Corporate Branding

Your corporate image is the visual voice of your company and identifies the goods/services you offer while differentiating your from another. The corporate image anchors your company’s brand and becomes the single most visible manifestation of the company for your target market. For this reason, a well-designed brand and logo is an essential part of any company’s overall brand image and marketing strategy. We live in a global marketplace and a very visual society where having an effective logo design is key success.

brandYour brand’s logo and visual identity needs to accomplish several things; It must be memorable, unique, build credibility, create an emotional connection with your target audience, be scaleable, be clear in message, be defining of your value and poimise, and be motivating to your customer.

Branding however, goes beyond just a logo design. It’s developing the expectations of what your customers will experience with consistent visual representation which leaves a permanent impression in their minds. We help you achieve this via logo design, key color development, typeface definition, custom style-guide, slogan development and associated tag-lines to be applied to every marketing vehicle and help ensure that brand consistency is applied at every point in which you reach a customer. Our teams will see that this uniformity is implemented on your letterhead, website, business cards, print ads, TV ads, presentations, billboards, vehicle wraps, storefront design and signage to continually imprint your brand’s mark in the mind of consumers and business partners.

Sterling Media Northwest will look at your long-term goals and future possibilities to help define a brand image that will help carry your business into the future with increased customer awareness ad loyalty. Let our professional team build a “favorable frame of mind” and excellent top of mind awareness for your company brand, product or service. Harness the massive power of today’s media to help your prospective customers think of you first! We can help you capture the business that your competition wishes they had.

Does your company have a brand identity that is more than just a logo? While a logo is a good place to start, you should consider building your “visual position” to be something larger. Building a system for your brand allows you to meet the demands of different media, while still presenting a cohesive identity.

For example, web site design only allows a limited number of font choices, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a corporate typeface for printed marketing materials. In fact the more elements you can establish as your basic look and feel will mean that variations from that scheme won’t make your brand identity disintegrate.

  1. Logo or wordmark. A logo is a graphic symbol, whereas a wordmark or logotype is just the words of your company or product name set in a specific, fixed way. These elements should be professionally designed and set.
  2. Different logo “lockups”. While your logo should always be rendered consistently, you will need variations based on placement and usage. For example, you may need color and black and white variations, you may need versions for horizontal and square applications. But they all should have the same essential qualities.
  3. Key colors. A corporate color palette is usually defined by the colors in a logo. Often these are one or two colors only, although some are more complex.
  4. Additional color palette options. In addition to the colors in your logo, what other colors complement them? This can be loosely defined such as: bright and bold, pastel, or cool colors. Or, they may handpicked from a color swatch book. These additional colors are often what really brings together (or makes a disconnect) from one point of contact to the next.
  5. Corporate typefaces. Choose just a handful of fonts to be used whenever there is printed materials. Make sure these are available on all the computers that will create these documents.
  6. Standard typographic treatments. Your typographic identity should include ways of handling key types of text, perhaps a consistent way of styling headlines or pull-out text. Work to make these similar from one application to the next. It may be the way you write your URLS, or the way you capitalize your headlines.
  7. Consistent style for images. You don’t need to use the same photos over and over again, but all imagery should have a consistent look and feel. Maybe the photos are brightly lit and the subject is looking right into the camera. Or, the photos have a subtle color palette and the people never look at the camera but are engaged in their activity. Photos could be close-ups, soft focus, or crisply detailed. You don’t need to use photos! You can use line art, illustrations or just charts and graphs. Whatever you choose, use a consistent style in all materials, whether printed or online.
  8. Have a full library of graphic elements. These are all the small details that really build a branding system. It could be a background texture, a line style treatment, a use of white space or color blocks. These are the areas where do-it-yourself-ers start to suffer, and where a professional graphic designer can pull together a cohesive look for you.

When you have a comprehensive and broadly built graphic identity, it creates a foundation for a rock solid brand identity. The key is consistency. Your brand elements must consistently represent your brand promise as well as consumers’ perceptions and expectations for your brand. It is important to develop brand identity guidelines so your employees, vendors, ad agencies, business partners, and so on clearly understand how they can and cannot use your logo.

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The American Marketing Association (AMA) defines a brand as a “name, term, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of them intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from those of other sellers.

“A brand is a name, term, design or other feature that distinguishes one seller’s product from those of others. Brands are used in business, marketing and advertising Initially, livestock branding was adopted to differentiate one person’s cattle from another’s by means of a distinctive symbol burned into the animal’s skin with a hot branding iron. A modern example of a brand is Coca-Cola which belongs to the Coca-Cola Company.” ~ Wikipedia.

The physical branding of livestock as described above, is exactly the same impact your brand should have on your current and prospective customer’s mind. A properly executed brand campaign will leave an indelible mark in the mind of the consumers of your product or service that causes them to think of you first. In marketing-speak this allows you to have achieved the necessary T.O.M.A., or ‘top of mind awareness’ for current and future success. The Sterling Media Northwest team really enjoys and takes pride in helping define a new brand or re-branding a company with an outdated look and providing an updated and more effective look, feel and identity.

The battle for the consumer’s mind, there is a limited amount of space for brand recognition and thousands of brand impressions fighting for that limited space every day. Your company brand should help your current and prospective customers recognize you as the best and only option to provide solutions to their problem.

According to Marketing Expert, Laura Lake, “Your brand resides within the hearts and minds of customers, clients, and prospects. It is the sum total of their experiences and perceptions, some of which you can influence, and some that you cannot.”

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