Part 3 of our Designing for Signs series involves Brand Consistency. Read on to learn more:
Brand consistency is often said to be one of the most important keys to a successful business. Having a consistent message builds consistent perceptions of a company which in turn builds trust and authority. Trust builds loyalty and that’s exactly what every business needs: loyal customers who then become vocal advocates for the company. In addition to trust and loyalty, brand consistency also builds relevancy. If your brand is seen as an authority in your niche or business area, people will look to you for answers. Afterall, who doesn’t want to position themselves as relevant and authoritative in their industry?
Brand consistency is critical to the success of your business.
Simply put, your brand is what your prospective customers think about your business, know about your business, and understand about your business. Different aspects of your business’ branding such as your business logo, color combination, music theme, etc. reflect your goals and influence the perception of your audiences. A great brand takes time and effort to build. You know it when you see one or even hear one. You simply recognize the brand through their messaging and music theme. That’s exactly what a brand’s consistency is all about, being immediately recognizable in the digital as well as the real world. In this article, we’ll discuss why it is important to keep your brand’s message consistent.
4 ways to keep your brand consistent.
Develop a style guide and stick to it.
In previous articles in this series, we discussed how to choose your brands colors and fonts. These are important aspects to your branding and they should be chosen with care. Once chosen, you need to stick to them. Many companies develop something called a “Style Guide”. This includes your brand’s logo design, typography, colors and other aspects of the printed or digital world.
Consistency is vital to your visual identity. Even before they can read, children are able to recognize certain brands like McDonald’s or Toys R Us simply from the lettering style, colors, and logos. That type of consistency is what you are striving for. The second a customer sees a sign or image with your lettering, logo, and fonts they will immediately remember who you are, what you do and also how the business makes them feel. If you want some inspiration and examples of style guides, check out this super comprehensive article by Mary Stribely on the Canva website called “50 meticulous style guides every startup should see before launching”.
Create consistency across your content
When your audience gets accustomed to your brand, you then have the chance to establish authority and become an expert in your industry. Consistency is crucial for determining your brand authority. So, it makes sense that not only do your styles have to be consistent, but your content needs to be consistent as well. If people are looking at your brand’s content, whether for entertainment or for information, they are going to come to expect consistency in what they get. If you tend to sprinkle in humor, then keep doing that. If you tend to be serious and somber, keep doing that. Decide how you want to interact with the world and how you want your customers to view you and then stick with that message.
Let the public into your business culture
Your brand does more to your business than giving it a name. Your brand is how your customers identify you and trust you. They often associate themselves with a “brand” instead of a “company or product.” When customers feel they know a brand, they connect with it emotionally. This is where the importance of business culture comes into play. We all know that today’s top brands like Google, Apple and Microsoft have spent a great deal of time, effort and money on developing and marketing their business cultures. People want to feel connected and to do that they need to see behind the scenes. Creating a section on your website or in print media that highlights your company and the team behind it is always a good way to build trust in your audience. People want to work with people, not companies.
Align your Digital Presence
A company’s brand guidelines are a set of rules that define how a brand must use the brand assets such as logo, color theme, font, messaging, etc. to showcase the brand on different platforms such as social media, search engine, offline banners, posters, brochures, etc.
So, if you want to maintain brand consistency, make sure you create your brand guidelines first. But you also need to determine what channels you share these assets on. For instance, are you advertising on Facebook and Twitter? Is that consistent with your following? If your clientele is busy millennial types who commute daily do you have a digital LED sign in a prominent downtown area? Do you share content on local blogs and news outlets? These kinds of decisions are important and you’ll need to develop guidelines for where you share your content to build trust.
Align your Real World Presence
It’s important to show that your company exists in the real world and interacts with the real world and isn’t just a mirage. Local businesses know the value behind going to parades, donating to charities or backing a little League Team. Not only do you get to help your community, but you let the community know that you care and are here for more than just business. These actions should be shared through the proper social media channels to let people know what you are up to. Also, inviting the public in by offering a tour of your company or factory, holding an open house, or having a wine and cheese type event is another way to bring the public into your culture.
Custom signs and graphics with consistent branding
If you’re struggling to find a signs and graphics partner who understands your brand inside and out, we’re here to help. At New York City Signs and Awnings, we provide you with superior-quality signs and graphics while maintaining the consistency of your brand.