Learn to build a brand identity by knowing the elements that define it
To create a brand with value that meets the expectations of any creator, it is essential to base each part of its construction process on concrete information related not only to the audiences you want to reach, but to your own objectives and the image you want to establish in the market.
An important part of that information has to do with the elements that make up a brand. Here we explain what each one of them consists of based on an identity-building model proposed by Alejandro Pascalis (@alejandro_pascalis), a graphic designer with 10 years of experience as a brand strategist. He has worked with clients such as American Eagle, Uber, Claro and American Express, among many others.
The first three elements relate to how brands relate to the public, and how the public interacts with them. They are product or service, experience and perception, and Alejandro explains them as follows:
Product / Service
The means by which the user is delivered an experience.
The interaction that the user has with a certain product or service.
The result of the combination of the product or service with the experience generated. This represents the essential element of a brand because it is the impression the user is left with. It is composed of emotions and ideas.
How do you manage that perception? Simple: by understanding the user so that you can give them an experience that solves a problem, that gives them value, or that they cannot access in any other way than through your product or service.
Often, perception has more to do with emotional and social factors than with technical specifications. Hence the importance of knowing the user and applying this knowledge to the core of your brand design. To do this, you must learn to control expectations, that is: never promise more than you can actually deliver.
You do not need to exceed expectations throughout the timeline of your product to measure the success or failure of your efforts to be perceived well. Instead, you need to maintain constant satisfaction throughout the experience, avoid evaluation peaks and lows and excel in one thing only against the competition: that peak will be what makes the difference.
Designing and positioning elements
The last two elements of the construction model proposed by Alejandro Pascalis are the name and logo. It is common to believe that the whole brand depends on these last two points, but both depend on the success of the three points explained above. Below we tell you what they consist of:
A linguistic element that represents, by association, the perception that a user has of a product or service based on his or her experience. Alejandro shares some of the starting points for naming a brand:
- Characteristics of the product or service, that is, when the name says exactly what the brand is about:
- Metaphors or words that relate to one of the implicit values of your brand:
- Superlatives, i.e. words that refer to the characteristics of the product, and also amplify them:
This element does not represent the brand directly, but calls the user's mind to the name, which, in turn, will appeal to the perception associated with the experience. Before creating symbols, it is important to understand what types of symbols exist, so Alejandro highlights the following classification:
- Graphic materials: logos, imagotypes, monograms, flags and shields.
- Commercial image: Visual appearance of a product (graphics and shape of packaging, shape of product, uniforms, shapes of buildings or vehicles)
- Spokespeople or representatives: They are the figures that represent the brand (celebrities, founders, characters).
- Words: linguistic forms associated with the brand (abbreviations, slogans, jingles or taglines)
- Sounds: anthems, music, or specific sounds that relate to the brand identity
If you want to learn more about how to build a successful and impactful brand, sign up for Alejandro Pascalis’ course, Introduction to Brand Strategy.