Brand loyalty found in my café latte…
I usually start my day by grabbing a latte at a local coffeehouse. One morning I was chatting with the barista and she said she always knew I was coming because she could smell my perfume before she saw me (luckily she loved the fragrance I wore!) Since that day, our chats became more personalised and I got to know more of the staff. My visits soon evolved into them placing my order as soon as they caught a whiff of my perfume. Suddenly I became more than a random customer, I became a person whom they called by name. We built a relationship and a loyalty.

Off to my office, with latte in hand, I started thinking about a new logo I was designing. Like the coffeehouse, who created my coffee, I realized my job was to create more than a logo. My job was to create an image for my clients that would help them build relationships, credibility and customer loyalty – essentially building a brand – starting with a logo.

Many clients believe that once the logo is designed their brand is complete. However, like my latte experience, brand is so much more than a logo.

A logo, alone, can’t do all the work

Many expect their logo, usually a simple image, to do all the work. They want their logo to convey their corporate story, philosophy, products and services, as well as support their entire corporate culture. Unfortunately, a logo alone, can’t do all that.

Think of your logo as the initial component of your brand. While the style, colour, font and imagery are critical to the creation of a successful logo, this is only the beginning. Developing key messaging to define what you have to offer your audience is essential. Your brand must accurately convey your business through various elements, in combination with your logo.

Does your logo have a tagline? Does it need a tagline? How do you create brand awareness, loyalty and stand out from the competition? These are questions that need to be addressed when developing your brand strategy.

Also consider these three simple questions:

What emotions do you want to create with your brand?

If you’re a tax accounting firm, you probably want to create feelings of trust and confidence, while subtly displaying an ability to bring calm to a stressful situation. On the other end of the spectrum, if you own a sporting goods company you may want to project a sense of energy, excitement and adventure. So it’s important to understand what feeling you want your clients, investors, (and even employees) to experience when they interact with your company and its brand.

How do you want to be remembered?

First impressions are critical and typically shape future interactions (or halt them). How do you want clients (and potential clients) to remember you and your company? Are you caring, competent and offer a valuable product or service? Are you engaging, energetic and enthusiastic? The manner in which you want to be remembered must be defined and incorporated into your entire brand story.

How can you develop your brand beyond the logo?

Remember it’s not just your logo, it’s your entire brand story that must be woven into every aspect of your business. For instance, let’s say you run a law firm that not only brings a high level of expertise to each case – you also bring a caring and committed attitude to your clients.  Your website must immediately emulate this philosophy. From the website to your corporate office, your brand experience must be supported in such elements as the ease of opening your office doors to being welcomed by a pleasant receptionist. Even the chairs, magazines and art displayed in your lobby must reflect and support your brand. Comfortable and relaxed but polished and professional.

Logo placement, stationery and electronic collateral are the obvious brand components but it is really important to understand that every single interaction that someone has with your company must support your brand and corporate culture.

By developing a strong brand you are creating an experience for your audience and a corporate culture that supports your business. So like the latte I purchase every morning, brand is more than the logo on the coffee cup, brand was built into every interaction I have with the coffeehouse. In this case, my interactions built brand loyalty and a strong, long-term relationship.

Let us help you build your brand.