You know how we brand designers always say that your brand is more than your logo? When we say that, we are talking about the deep stuff that makes up the foundation of your brand. But when it does come to the design of your brand, there is also more to that than just the logo too. Your brand design is made up of your logo, fonts, colors, patterns, icons, and other elements. These elements are what define your brand style and what set the tone for all of your branded material. Having an incomplete brand design is like wearing a fancy dress with no shoes. Brand elements are essential in completing the look and feel of your brand.
What are brand elements?
Like everything in branding and design, the exact definition can be unclear to someone who is not familiar with branding. Brand elements are defined as the fonts, colors, graphics, patterns, icons, and other elements that accompany your brand and extend the design to other areas of your business. Your logo will be what you use most often when representing your brand, but brand elements will help define a cohesive style for your brand and business. Establishing specific fonts, colors, and patterns to use for your business will ensure that you are always using the same elements when creating new items for your brand.
Why do you need them?
Brand elements are essential to creating that cohesive look for your business. Your brand can feel incomplete and inconsistent if you don't have these elements clearly defined for your brand. When I complete a branding project, I leave my client with a brand manual that defines each of these elements and how they can be used for their brand. This way they know, without a doubt, how to use their brand consistently and can establish a well-known look and feel for their business. Brand elements are all about creating brand recognition for your brand. Your logo can't stand alone with a full brand style to back it up. Most of the time when you are showcasing work, creating marketing graphics, or designing an email, you will use your brand elements more than just the logo itself. These elements paired together create the look for your brand.
How can they be used to extend your brand?
There are many ways that you can use your brand elements to extend your brand. When designing for my clients, I use their brand elements when designing collateral items, website graphics, and email templates. Brand elements can also be used in any marketing materials or social media images. The patterns, fonts, and colors should be used any time that you are creating a new graphic for your band. In addition, if you have a specific icon or graphic that can become synonymous with your brand. It all goes back to creating that brand recognition. If someone sees a simple graphic of yours on social media, you want them to instantly know it's your brand without being told. The end goal is to have that cohesive look that becomes known as your brand.
Brand elements are a key part of my branding process and the part that I feel really completes the brand. Even if we start with the logo, I don't feel like I've truly delivered a brand to my client unless I give them the whole package. Establishing elements like specific fonts, colors, patterns, and icons for your brand will give you that complete package too and help ensure that your brand is represented consistently in everything that you do.
Do you have these elements defined for your brand? Are you using them consistently to establish a clear brand style?
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