In a world that's becoming increasingly complicated, there's value in keeping things simple. When it comes to building a brand, it's natural to want to include everything. You've got a lot of information to communicate and you want to make sure it's all understood. With so much to say, how do you differentiate between the essential and the excessive? And more importantly, how do you build a brand that's both smart and simple?
It's best to start by reminding yourself that brands are designed to solve problems. They're designed to enhance your life by making it easier. Sometimes they provide solutions you've been searching for; often they provide solutions to problems you never knew you had. Ultimately, if a brand fails to solve a problem in your life, it could be doing a better job.
We've all heard the saying 'keep it simple, stupid', but how can a brand communicate so much by saying so little? We explore the top techniques you can use to build a brand that succeeds in its simplicity.
A good brand starts with an eye-catching logo. A great brand starts with an effective one. When it comes to brand recognition, your logo is your best asset. Your logo plays an essential role in communicating exactly what your business does. The most successful logos are clever with colour, they're smart with symbolism and most importantly: they're simple. Our favourite examples are CBS's eye icon - a logo that has changed very little since its creation in 1951; FedEx's logo, which features a hidden arrow; and NBC's iconic, colourful peacock.
When it comes to constructing a clever brand name, less is more. While it's tempting to write something lengthy, the best names use no more than one or two words. A look at some of the world's most successful brands says it all. Think Dunkin' Donuts, YouTube and MasterCard; three very different brands with short, memorable names.
Coupled with a clever brand name, your tagline should clearly communicate your key offering. A successful tagline is carefully constructed and it tells customers what makes you unique. The devil is in the detail; so, if you don't need a word, don't use it. Abstract brand names pair perfectly with descriptive taglines to fill gaps in information. Some of our favourite examples include Apple's "Think Different", Nike's "Just Do It" and Cancer Council's "Slip, Slop, Slap".
Once your customers are familiar with the look and feel of your brand, the next step is to create an authentic, enjoyable experience. And when it comes to creating the best experiences, simplicity always wins. Think about what you remember when you shop at an online store for the first time, or when you visit a new cafe for breakfast. Your initial decision is probably influenced by the brand's look and feel; the interesting name or the striking logo. Beyond that, what you'll remember is the experience. You may get a free cookie with your coffee or free shipping at checkout; these little things make a big difference. Plenty of research has been done over the years on the value of simple experiences. According to Siegel+Gale's Global Brand Simplicity Index, 63% of consumers are willing to pay more for a simpler experience, and 69% are more likely to refer a brand that provides a simpler experience. A small touch can go a long way in keeping your customers loyal.
It's easy for your customers to be distracted. They're often time poor and they live in a world of choice. So it's important to keep time top of mind.
Efficiency doesn't need to be complicated. Take Uber, for example. Uber allows customers to order, ride and pay for their trip with one easy-to-use app. You don't need your wallet; the ride comes to you; and you can track the car right to your door. Uber solves problems through efficiency, giving both its customers and drivers a simple, rewarding experience.
Building an uncomplicated brand can be a complicated task. That's where we come in.
At Being Brands, we're dedicated to creating smart, simple and savvy brands. Our creativity is often inspired by our own experiences as customers, and our team are experts at creating memorable moments that customers love. We're problem solvers and the brands we create are problem solvers too.