We are living in very interesting times. Times where we are forced to reassess everything in our lives: our priorities, lifestyles, relationships, work, etc. I’m learning to keep what I need and get rid of things that are not that important to me.

There are things that I thought had purpose in my life and brought some degree of fulfillment, but in the light of this pandemic, have turned out to just be clutter, and it’s time to chuck them out.

Even the brands I’ve allowed into my life will be weighed and judged, and those found wanting, will be tossed out of my life.

Why should your brand be any different?

It will be tested and exposed for what it truly is.

If it’s a brand that’s been built with what I like to call ‘solid stuff’ it will not only stand, but come out stronger than before. If it is nothing more than a hollow shell with a thin layer of glossy paint, it will be exposed for what it is, and sadly many brands won’t survive the onslaught of the coming changes.

But what makes a brand strong and what is this ‘solid stuff’ I speak of?

Well, let’s first start with the age-old question: What is a brand? (Now, I’m very much aware there is much that has been written and said about this topic. This is my very humble and simple perception.)

A brand is so much more than a product name or logo mark. It’s a specific perception in the public’s minds concerning the qualities and attributes of a product or service.

David Ogilvy describes it as “the intangible sum of a product’s attributes”.

It’s everything people think they know about your product or service (whether factual or not), it’s the emotional response they have to it and most importantly the connection they feel towards it.

Your product (or service), name (brand name) or logo is tangible, it can be seen, and in some cases, touched.

Your band on the other hand, is a perception within someone’s mind, and that’s where things get interesting. Coming up with a brand name – easy – creating a brand logo – relatively easy enough – but creating a brand, a perception about your product/service offering in the public’s mind? This takes time, effort and hard work. That’s the solid stuff I’m talking about.

I’ve only been in the design and creative industry for 17 years (still a spring chicken), but it’s been long enough to realise not many people understand what it takes to build a solid, lasting brand.

This is my (humble) opinion on how you build with solid stuff.

Building a Brand is a lot like building a house:

Start with clear building plans – a good and clear strategy

    • Just like a building without building plans is doomed right from the start, so is a brand with no clear and sound strategy.

A good foundation – Brand DNA

    • Brand Purpose – Why should anyone care about what your brand has to offer?
    • Your Brand values – What does your brand stand for and believe?
    • Brand Attributes – What’s your brand’s attributes? (The tangible things that set you apart from your competitors)
    • What’s your brand personality (If it were a person, what would its characteristics be?)

Walls and roof – Your People and Leadership

    • Getting the right people is so important. Getting them trained and investing in them is essential. You can have the right strategy and good brand DNA but get the wrong people and everything will fall apart.
    • Understanding that the roof (leadership) can only function with help of the walls (the staff, employees) and that in turn the roof protects and covers the walls.

The plumbing and wiring – How your business is run!

Plastering and painting – Brand name and visiual identity.

    • Put in the time and effect to come up with a unique name and visual identity that sets you apart.
    • Have a good brand guideline and corporate identity manual. This will help ensure the brand always looks good in the public domain.

Have a good brand guideline and corporate identity manual. This will help ensure the brand always looks good in the public domain.

Furniture and finishesThe warm fuzzy feeling I get when I’m home.

When all this works together, you have a solid brand built with solid stuff.

Lastly, to build something solid you need the right builder to partner with. If you are serious about your brand, partnering with an agency that understands what it takes to build a lasting brand is key.

You don’t solve a house’s foundation problems, leaking roof or wiring or plumbing issues, with a paint job – no matter how good the painter is. These issues will keep surfacing time and time again. You need to work with someone who is able to identify these issues and work together to solve them.

We want to build great things with you. Get in touch with us to find out how we can work together.

Lephoi Maduna

Lephoi Maduna
Art Director
Logico Creative Solutions