When the time comes to start finalizing the details of your new business, you’ll realize just how many elements are involved when you’re creating a brand. It’s important to have a basic understanding of a few common branding terms, especially when you work with a graphic designer, marketing strategist, or other branding experts to improve your business and to avoid common branding mistakes.
Common Business Terms
Mission: Share the why behind your business and what you hope to accomplish if you’re looking for tips on how to craft the perfect mission statement that will make a lasting impact, check out this great article from Entrepreneur to get started.
Vision: This will include your long term goals for your company and what direction you’d like to go with it in the future. It’s important to have a strong vision so you can use it to help make upcoming business decisions that will help you reach your long term goals.
Core Values: You will determine what your brand stands for and what expectations you have for anyone working with you. The core values will help guide your brand’s actions and show that your brand is working to make a positive change in the world.
Brand Image: Refers to the customer’s perception of your brand and what they expect from you. For example, Target’s customers expect a top-quality shopping experience while paying less at checkout. They wouldn’t be happy if the prices suddenly skyrocketed or if the store was always a mess and the employees were unfriendly and not available to help.
Brand Strategy – The plan of how your brand will inform people about your new products and services and how you are going to execute the strategy you create.
Marketing Collateral – All the material a company uses for marketing purposes, including templates, brochures, business cards, case studios, email signatures, style guides, etc.
Typography – A visual component of the written word – Includes the fonts that you’ll use as part of your brand.
Serif Font – An extra stroke or curve that is added at the ends of the vertical and horizontal strokes of a letter.
Sans-Serif Font – Doesn’t include any extra strokes at the end of letters. Best for short sections of text and when the text will appear in small spaces.
Color Palette – This includes all of the colors you’ll use in your brand’s style guide. You’ll use your chosen color palette in every aspect of your business from your website, printed materials, and email signatures. It’s important to make sure the colors work harmoniously together, and a graphic designer will be able to help create a well-balanced palette that you’ll love.
Logo – It’s a recognizable and memorable symbol or mark that identifies your company. A logo will usually include your business name or initials, so it’s easy to recognize. Check out the top logo trends of 2020 to give you some inspiration if you’re getting ready to have your logo designed.
BrandMark – A symbol or mark that represents your company. For example Apple’s brandmark is a white apple. When people see it they know exactly what brand it stands for without seeing their company name.
Style Guide: A comprehensive set of design standards related to your brand. They will be used by all employees, contractors, and freelance workers to make sure everyone follows the same guidelines. Your style guide will include your brand’s logo, color scheme, fonts, business card templates, etc. It’s important to the integrity of your business to create uniformity in your branding, so it’s easy for customers to spot anything that represents your business.
Rebranding – As your business grows, you may find that you may expand your product offerings or choose to go in a completely different direction. This will require a branding change such as a new logo, color, palette, or entirely new style guide, depending on what will be different moving forward. It’s important to be strategic when you rebrand to make sure that you don’t lose the brand awareness you’ve worked so hard to build.
Every successful business implements a brand strategy and has a style guide that includes the elements that I’ve shared with you today. I hope these branding terms will help make the process of creating your own brand go more smoothly, moving forward.