“We need a new brand. Let’s refine some lines on our logo, make it more modern, and pick some deeper colors.”

If you’ve ever received the designation “designer” or “media person” or even “youngest person in the room,” you’ve probably had a conversation with somebody older than you in your organization about your brand. Typically, when people talk about their brand, they are talking about their logo. Although these two words are related to one another, they are not the same.

LOGO ≠ BRAND

I found this chart from my “Corporate and Brand Identity on the Web” class at UFL taught by Emily Ramsey that might be helpful here:

  • Logo – Mark or icon that identifies a business
  • Brand Visuals – All visual elements of the brand
  • Brand – Perceived Emotional Corporate Image

 A brand is not simply a logo. A true brand both prescribes and describes everything about an organization including visuals, tone, experience, and values
...in other words, your brand is their perception.

You can’t brand something. You earn your brand…and hopefully, you earn a good brand. A good brand is built around what you are already doing well and the things you hope to become. You want to strike the right balance between the inspiration and authenticity. Building a brand means building a perception. 

Perception is built through a combination of relationships and marketing. 

Mini Case Study: Chipotle

Marketing Branding Print Branding
Chipotle is a great example to use in helping to understand a brand.

  • Logo – They utilize a few different logos, but none are very different from each other.
  • Brand Visuals – Chipotle takes their maroon and brown logo and places it in different types of other visual elements. They often put it on a clean white background or use it in conjunction with a craft-paper background. They also use hand-drawn elements.  Their tone is usually playful. Apparently, they value having fun and being a little silly. They don’t mind poking fun at themselves or being informal in the normally-formal advertising world. Their experience is built on excellent service, convenient apps, and a clean environment.
  • Brand  With creative and clever visuals, they are a forward thinking company. Another thing reinforced by their brand visuals is their view concerning social responsibility, making a particular point to highlight conservation efforts, meat quality, and meat sources.

Do You Have A Brand?

Most organizations have a brand whether or not they realize it. Those who are proud of their brand have likely spent days, months, or even years hashing who they are and who they want to become. Those who might be looking to re-brand might be the victim of frequent leadership turnover, a weak mission statement, a poor strategy, or are unable to break out of old organizational habits. 

So, do you have a logo or a brand?