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What really is Branding Design?

I was thinking of writing a bit about branding design today. Before we jump into the whole thing, let’s clear the air by dismissing common misunderstandings about branding.

Branding Design is not

  • Logo Design

  • Identity Design

  • Marketing

  • Business Building

What is a Brand? It’s a collective reputation generated by any business or a person. For laymen on the other end, it's how we feel towards a business entity or a person. And Branding Design is all about creating and controlling the above said “feeling”.

To make this even simpler to understand, we will quickly take a walk alongside the chain of branding process.

Stage 1_ Business Goals:  A business is formed. The owner comes up with a potential idea for a product/service. They define their business goals.

Stage 2_Values:  Brand Values & Philosophies are set based on the business goal. These values should be communicated to the audience effectively.

Stage 3_ Brand Identity & Atmospherics. How to communicate the values to the customer? By creating an identity for the brand! From the Logo to the colors, From Typography to the Tone of communication— a system is built. Using various design collaterals like websites, adverts, visiting cards, stationary, etc (aka Brand Atmospherics), the identity is shared with the consumers to build a long-lasting impression.

Stage 4_Reputation: These collaterals will play a crucial role in building a reputation in the consumer's mind.

Makes sense?

Okay, I am putting the whole thing into a circle. Circles make everything better!

Time for a real case. Uber! Before coming up with their optimal brand design, Uber went through a lot of changes. We are not gonna talk about that here though. I am going to skip a few chapters from the Uber Story to make the process easy for you to understand.

Stage 1: Travis Cordell Kalanick comes up with a potential business plan for ride-hailing. He sets his goal to expand the business with branches in courier, food, and freight.

Stage 2: Based on these goals, a brand story is built. What do people want from a company like this? Trust, Ease of Access, Inclusivity, and Convenience! There, they became the brand’s values.

Stage 3: To convey that the company has these values that people care about, they had to build an identity that will communicate them. First step- Brand name! Uber says it all. Then came a simple, adaptable, and timeless logotype. Black & White color palette and candid imagery set the visual tone. They even set how the brand should sound— assistive, caring, and always available.

Stage 4: Uber eventually made people believe that they stand by their values. This brought in Uber’s current reputation. A good reputation helped in achieving its Business Goals!

So the whole point here is- we cannot pin down the term branding to some of its imperative operations alone. But, it's a holistic locution that includes the entire process of converting a business goal from paper to reality.

That's it for today.

<End of BrainDump>


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