“A picture is worth a thousand words” has never been more accurate than in the world of businesses where every entrepreneur thinks about how they can use an image to elevate their business visually. Creating a professional visual image of the brand is the key to success for any small business. It is something that can represent your vision and messages to the audience.
Visuals make a great impression on the audience, which increases their engagement with the business. Research has proved that content containing relevant imagery get more views than the content that doesn’t have imagery. Not just that, users are likely to share visual content on other platforms more than content that doesn’t contain imagery.
Brand imagery has always been a part of marketing, and the fact that it plays an important role in making a brand successful is undeniable. However, before we move on with the discussion, let’s explore a little about what brand imagery actually means.
What is brand imagery?
Brand imagery is the visual appearance of your brand’s core message. It is the visual appeal of your brand identity. The images that you use for brand imagery can appear in many forms—from websites to Facebook feeds to billboards or print ads.
To put in simple words, brand imagery provides you with an opportunity to communicate with your customers visually. Images used in branding is more than simple visuals—it is something that expresses emotions and feelings. It helps a company to build trust and confidence of the customers in the brand.
Show your customers who you are and why should they trust you—and if they choose to make a purchase, show them how your product can make their lives simpler and better.
Brand imagery, brand image and logos
Where the two things are quite different from each other, they are often perceived to be the same. Brand imagery and brand image are two different aspects of the brand. Disentangling the confusion: brand imagery can be described as the visual representation of your brand identity while brand image refers to how your brand is perceived on the outside and the reputation it has in the world. Brand imagery can be used to shape the brand image. However, it can be impacted by various marketing tactics, your values, your actions, and how you choose to communicate with your audience.
On the other hand, a logo design can be considered as an important part of brand imagery. A logo is a symbol which represents your business and is the most essential in building a brand. It is an image which helps in enhancing brand recognition. It is designed as an emblem, which is simple and can be used in making a brand identity.
Elements of successful brand imagery
To understand brand imagery in building relationships with the customers, you need to think of it from the perspective of your customers. What do you feel when you see some of the famous logos on a regular basis? Each of these logos may inspire a particular emotion in you. This emotion you feel is related to the visual appeal of the logo as well as the experience you had with the brand in the past. You need to recognize that it takes effort to create an effective logo design or image as it needs to be details and sophisticated to convey a clear meaning. Logos, brand imagery, and visuals may seem to be simple, but they contain more than what you might think. Here are described below are some elements that can make successful brand imagery.
You need to know your objectives before you move on to add details in the image. Make an outline of your objectives—the values, and the message you need to express through the image. Define the purpose of the visual and set a clear goal for your marketing team.
Colours are the most important factor of an image. It is considered as a significant visual component of the image and can be used to evoke emotions. Colours play an essential role in conveying a message to the audience—be it through children books illustration, or brand images.
Think of some of the greatest brands of the world such as Nike, Google, Honda, Apple and more. All these logos have one thing in common, i.e. is a straightforward shapes ad outlines for their brand imagery. Marketing works best when shapes, colours and other elements work together to create simple yet appealing brand imagery.
Most geometric shapes used in making an image are associated with a universal meaning. They are not affected by race, language or culture. On combining with colours, shapes can add to the importance of the brand perceived by the audience and provoke an emotional response of the audience.
Creating brand imagery for your company
Being in business means you have a brand which you need to market and make an impact on the audience. You need images which are essential to put your brand together and make an outline describing your goals, but you need to determine how to create brand imagery for your company.
Well, it doesn’t need a rocket scientist to the job; it just requires strategic thinking. For starters, your image should replicate your company’s personality and your industry, along with your customer’s expectations. Along with that, you need to make sure that the image is able to describe your products and services to the audience.
#1. Think of customers
What do your customers expect from your company and services? If you can understand your customer’s need and expectations, you can source better visuals for your audience. Understand your audience and look out for your competitors to make your brand stand out in the market.
To better understand it, take the example of Mercedes and Dodge. Both companies are trying to sell the same product to two different audiences. In the ad, Mercedes often has a silver colour and is shot in urban environments. It uses Sans-serif fonts in the ad. The colour and setting of the ad evoke luxury, technology and confidence. Conversely, in dodge ads, their cars are often in red with a racetrack setting containing heavy Sans-Serif fonts, which depicts the idea of fast, strong, and powerful cars.
#2. Appeal through design
Design is important to convey the message to the audience. Take the Mercedes and dodge example again. Where both the brands are selling a similar product, they are selling it to a different audience. This was possible through the setting, colours and other elements of design used in the image.
To be successful at making brand imagery, you need to make careful selections while choosing colours, composition, typeface, content and style of work to create a mood. You need to learn the colour psychology and the basics of typography so you can deliver a clear message through the image. For example, metallic colours depict luxury and sophistication while dark colours with heavy fonts can give modern or futuristic vibes.
#3. Understand your audience
Knowing what your audience makes it easier to understand what they need. It is easier to choose design elements required in creating an image. Think about it, a part of your audience may respond positively to your logo design with a clean background having few elements while the other may respond to trendy GIFs. You need to make sure that you test your strategy to understand what your audience requires. You can use Instagram to post pictures and see which one gets the most response and engagement.
#4. Stick with your style
It is apparent that you don’t need respective or identical pictures for your brand. However, you need to make sure that all your images should look similar, or rather feel similar—whether through a similar typeface, colour palette or style of the image.
Take the example of the images present on Coke’s Instagram. They aren’t identical, but they all have the same feel. Once you have figured out the way to deliver your message, you need to make sure that you stick to it. Be creative, but don’t stray.
#5. Use photography and illustrations
Photography is the most common style of brand images, but today, companies are adopting illustrations for their branding. It is true when it comes to seeing is believing, but who doesn’t love to see the illustrated form of the brand instead of looking at another stock image? You need to be creative with the style you choose to create brand imagery.
Successful brand images help in making a perfect first impression on the audience. Customers most likely buy your products because of the values behind them. It takes a great deal of strategising, time and effort in developing brand imagery, which can influence the audience and cultivate loyal consumers. To be successful, you simply need to understand your audience and work on your brand image to enhance customer engagement. It may not be easy, but the results are simply rewarding for the company.
About the Author!
Zeeshan Hussain Bhatti is a blogger by passion and Digital strategist & Tech Geek by profession and currently working with Children Books Illustration a global illustration design agency. With having a tech background and experience in IT development services, Zeeshan is eager towards exploring the modern-day tech landscape. With having interest in technology, Bhatti writes about leading edge technologies, Artificial Intelligence, Logo Designing and much more.