Skip to 0 minutes and 1 secondThis presentation tries to answer the question, why does a brand need an identity?

Skip to 0 minutes and 9 secondsHere's an ancient answer from Aristotle-- "The soul never thinks without an image." In order to think, we need some kind of visual version of an abstract subject or abstract topic. And more modern, Jean Baudrillard, the French sociologist, says, "To become an object of consumption, an object must first become a sign. Only as a sign can it be consumed." So a sign, a logo, an identity is essential to consumption.

Skip to 0 minutes and 42 secondsAnd if you remember our definition of brand-- so it's a set of ideas shaped by actions and usually recognised by a visual and verbal style. That visual and verbal style is what is known as a brand identity. Brands need a brand identity so that people can recognise them. Can you think of a brand that doesn't have a brand identity? It's almost impossible.

Skip to 1 minute and 10 secondsSo here's about the role in a bit more detail. So brand identity is a range of visual, verbal, sensory, and interactive expressions of a brand to do five things. And we'll talk about each of them with some examples. Communicating. Helping customers understand why the organisation exists and what benefit they get from it. So IKEA is a great example of that and so is fair trade.

Skip to 1 minute and 58 secondsSecond role is to differentiate, to stand out in a crowded, commoditised sector and beyond. First Direct, the bank in Britain, does that in a very bold way.

Skip to 2 minutes and 16 secondsInnocent Drinks do that in a much more colourful way.

Skip to 2 minutes and 24 secondsAnd tone of voice is very important. The way the words are written is very important for Innocent.

Skip to 2 minutes and 33 secondsThird, to resonate, to encourage belonging, to engender an emotional attachment, and to encourage cross-selling. Ferrari absolutely does this-- a simple combination of logo and the glossy use of colour.

Skip to 2 minutes and 56 secondsApple does it through a very simple colour scheme, with an image, style, tone of voice, always reinforcing the Apple story, but never overpowering you.

Skip to 3 minutes and 17 secondsFourth, to migrate, to enable an organisation of products to grow into different sectors more easily. Easy Jet, interesting example, started as an airline with its very clear brand identity, the typeface, the orange colour. It's been able to move into other services, too.

Skip to 3 minutes and 43 secondsAnd Virgin is probably the most famous example of that, from a record label, through an airline, into space travel.

Skip to 3 minutes and 54 secondsAnd then fifth, co-creating to enable active participation by customers in the product. AOL does that with a visual identity that depends on the images and the colours and the patterns behind the logo, images, colours, and patterns that can be created by customers.

Skip to 4 minutes and 22 secondsMacmillan, which is a UK cancer charity, very, very simple visual style with this very strong typeface, which is very easy for volunteers for Macmillan to adopt and use in local events all around the country.

Skip to 4 minutes and 44 secondsSo what makes good identities into great identities? Here are three examples-- Google, playing across all five of those roles; The Guardian, again, all five roles very successfully achieved; and finally, Nike, again hitting the mark on all five of those different roles.

Skip to 5 minutes and 30 secondsAnd here, in case you really want to dig, are the image sources behind this slide show.

Why does a brand need an identity?

Almost every brand has a distinctive style. Brands, in other words, are almost always designed – their look and feel is not accidental. The basic elements of this style or design are often called a ‘brand identity’. But why does a brand need a brand identity? This slideshow aims to explore these issues.

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The Secret Power of Brands

UEA (University of East Anglia)

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