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Logo vs. Brand Heuristic Instructions

Logo vs. Brand Heuristic Instructions

I guess most readers of this blog are already familiar with the fundamental difference between a brand’s visual identity and branding. To change the visual identity of a particular brand does not mean rebranding. Changing visual identity while leaving all other brand elements unchanged does not substantially change the brand. It changes one of a brand’s moments of truth but not the brand identity itself. To be more precise, it changes brand identity insofar as it becomes unbalanced since a part of it was changed without taking into account all other elements.

If we take a situation when brand identity really changes (leaving reasons for the change aside in this post), does this also necessitate a change of visual identity?

If rebranding is substantial, then all moments of truth should also be changed. Logo and slogan are two of many moments of truth. If rebranding is minor, you can probably leave the logo intact and sometimes even the slogan. The logo stands on top of the visual identity hierarchy and is, for that reason, most resistant to change, while slogans are next in line. So, only substantial rebranding necessitates a complete change of visual identity.

How do you know if rebranding is substantial?

Check the differences in your brand identity formula. If the differences are substantial, then you have just passed substantial rebranding.

Beware, though: check if the company that runs a brand lives these changes. If not, you must first secure internal procedures aligning internal brand perception with rebranded identity.

What?

Yes. Rebranding is an internal process, whereas repositioning is an external process. Logos, taglines, and so on are part of the external repositioning, part of moments of truth that emanate identity in physical reality like phenotype emanates genotype. The brand manager should first be sure that brand identity complies with the ever-changing needs of consumers or stakeholders, change identity if needed (rebranding), and, ultimately, change moments of truth (including visual identity) according to instructions derived from brand identity.

Not all moments of truth should be changed at the exact moment. One should always take care of those moments of truth that address internal stakeholders first. Internal stakeholders are those who shall execute a brand and should thus be the first and most familiar with it.

What is the Brand identity formula? What is rebranding? What are moments of truth? Consult Brandlife: Brand’s Mystery Unveiled eBook: Andrej Drapal, Maša Dolanc: Kindle Store.

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