Angel Oak Creative’s creative, here. Thought I’d try my hand at writing for a change to try to convince you guys how much visuals impact your brand identity, and thus, your brand’s reputation. We’ve worked on rebrands and refreshes that have pushed nonprofits forward and led to some big successes.
Let’s start with this: What even is branding?
When we explain what “branding” is to our clients we use this metaphor:
- Think of your company as a person. Your brand is who you are.
- Your logo is your “face” – the first impression about who you are. It is how others will identify and differentiate you from others.
- Your overall brand is your personality and your character. It’s all of the stories, opinions and preferences that you have as a company. It’s the vibe you give off and how others feel about you.
This is why brand structure is so important. No offense, nonprofits, but let’s be real, most of the time money is tight. Visuals and design are usually the first things to get cut, which can create negative external perceptions of your brand. I get it, I do. But a heavy lift to identify who you are as a company on the front end will pay off in the long run.
This isn’t only about looking pretty! Whether we like it or not, first impressions stick. Every person you interact with has the potential to impact your company, and we want to ensure you’re doing your best to draw them in. Your brand has the power to make you relatable, trustworthy and exciting to supporters as they interact with you over time.
Think about it from a support standpoint. If you need money, and I have money (this is all hypothetical – I really don’t have money), and I come into contact with your company and you look cheap, messy and unprofessional, I’ll definitely wonder if your organization is worth my investment.
You want supporters to understand your heart and your mission so clearly that they can support from a place of collaboration. It’s personal that way, and that’s how you keep consistent supporters. You share who you are with them and the successes that you’re having, which is all tied back to your brand. Team efforts draw people in and keep them hanging around.
There are a lot of companies out there competing for those consistent supporters. If you want to get noticed, you have to stand out. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely want you to look good, but more importantly, I want you to best convey who you are, and learn how to best leverage your identity as a company to grow and relate to others. Photos, visuals, collateral, language, logos, color, typography can all speak to who you are, and should all fit a uniform personality that goes back to your soul as a company. Several small pieces build up the entire voice of your brand, and it’s my job and Angel Oak’s goal to leverage those parts to make you shine.
So, three cheers for the rebrands and refreshes below that we’ve helped bring about and move forward with great success! The logos are only a small part of your brand, but they can sure influence the other components of it!
– Anna DeBoy, Creative Strategist