What's the Visual Position for Your Brand?

October 28, 2009 | Branding

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Have you staked out your brand position? Have you defined it visually?

Brand positions are often created in words, though people experience brands primarily visually. BUT a brand’s packaging, advertising and overall presence in the world starts with visual symbolism, not words… 80% of what we learn about the world comes to us visually…yet most brands do not have a visual position that brings the written positioning and story to life.

That quote is from Branding Strategy Insider’s Blog post about Neuroscience and Brand Connections. And I really like the term “visual position.”

Moving from words to graphics

Here are Visible Logic we work on a lot of projects that are branding systems: logo + web site + printed materials and graphics. They all work together as a cohesive system. We like to start this process with a research phase that usually ends with a written brand statement. This statement helps our clients to understand the personality of their brand and how they fit into the landscape of others in their field.

From there, we quickly move into making these branding position statements into a visual look and feel for a brand. We often use the term brand identity (to show that’s it’s larger than just a logo), but I like the term visual positioning!

Some key elements to your visual position could be:

  • color. A dominant color or two pulled from your logo and supplemented with others.
  • imagery. Generally, logos do not have photographic elements, but a specific photo technique can be way to add visual interest and create a unique look for materials
  • conceptual. Not every visual position has to be defined by hard graphics. It could be a general feel such uplifting, calm, or energetic

Greater richness, more appeal

The great thing about visual positioning is that you don’t need to redesign your logo. You can build off of it to design a brand identity with broader applications.

Instead of thinking about rubber stamping your logo onto everything as the main way to build your distinct look and feel, consider how creating a montage gives greater richness to your identity. When you introduce additional elements you allow each of them to add to the story of your brand. A texture might add warmth, or a typographic style might show precision. All of these different elements build a more complete picture of your brand personality.

And the end result of the designed pieces will be much better defined, much more memorable brand.

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