What is Brand Identity?

Brand identity is the visual expression of your brand using different elements. This is your chance to affect how your audience sees YOUR brand.

You can do this using a color palette, typography, and other techniques. Having consistent colors and fonts, for example, shows your audience that your brand pays attention to the details!

01. Color Palette

Brands use color palettes in many ways. Colors can help evoke emotion or attitude, but they can also establish brand identity. Standardize color across ALL materials and products to create a distinct voice that speaks to your audience the loudest. Pick colors that not only complement each other but your brand too!

Are you focused on hospitality? Use warm tone colors! Is your brand tied to the beach? Use the colors of the sea!

Pro-Tip: use hex codes to keep your color palette sharp and consistent.

SSM Creative Collective’s color palette

02. Typography

Like color palettes, the fonts that your brand uses help establish brand identity. Typography is a highly visual way to communicate attitude, brand voice, and brand values. Is your brand fun, sophisticated, minimalist? You get the idea.

When pairing a few different fonts for your brand, mix and match Serif and Sans-Serif fonts. Doing so can make your headers absolutely pop! You can also throw in some script fonts to add that personal, human touch.

Pro-Tip: Use Serif fonts for print publications and Sans-Serif fonts for digital. This is because Serif fonts are easier to read in print and Sans-Serif is easier to read on a screen.

Examples of font types

03. Graphics

Logos may come to mind first, but brands use all kinds of graphics! Graphics communicate certain messages or attitudes towards your audience. There are a few different ways that you can use graphics to establish your brand.

  • Use speech bubbles to show that your brand values or specializes in communication.
  • Arrows suggest efficiency and production is important to your brand. I
  • Incorporate subjects or figures to visually represent the focus of your brand.

SSM Creative Collective is all about blending the old and the new, so we pull inspiration from there when creating our graphics.

04. Form/Shape

The form and shape of your content also communicate different things to your audience. So, what impressions are you trying to make? Use straight lines and straight-edged shapes to communicate formality or strength. This tells your audience that your work is solid, trustworthy, and reliable.

Incorporate softer lines and rounded shapes to communicate softness. Your brand is approachable and cares about building community and relationships.

Pro-Tip: Use both styles to communicate a more complex idea about your brand identity.

SSM Creative Collective’s logo

05. Voice

The most important element of a consistent and reliable brand is not visual at all – it’s your voice! Your brand’s tone tells your audience everything they need to know. This is the most personal of the elements of brand identity because it shows who YOU are to the audience.

Are you friendly and fun, or is a serious, business-like tone more important to you? Is your content funny or academic – finding that perfect blend is half the fun! Don’t forget that your audience will appreciate a consistent voice too.

How would YOU use these elements to develop and maintain brand identity?