The Difference Between a Logo and A Brand

We often receive inquiries or DM’s from other business owners asking us to create a logo for them. When we send over our packages, occasionally we receive a “what if I only need a logo” response. Well, there’s a reason we don’t offer “logo only” packages – because a logo is only part of the brand. Let us break down the difference between a logo and a brand for you!

What is a brand?

The most simply put:

“Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.”Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon

A brand is how your audience views you. It’s the lasting impression they have of you and how they perceive you. And this can be whether it is what you intend for them to feel or not.

What is branding?

Branding is how you, as a company, choose to convey the emotions and brand you want your audience to feel. You do this by creating a brand identity that sparks a connection with your audience and enhances their client experience.

For more on brand elements and how to use them to create a brand identity, visit this detailed post here!

What part does the logo play in the brand?

The actual logo is only one part of the whole brand. Yes, it will be what is seen the most in relation to your business and is what will be shown on most deliverables. People will eventually identify your company with that logo, but it’s still only one part of the entire brand identity.

Take a look in the mirror and look at yourself in the eyes. That’s your logo right there, your eyes. The people who know you could probably identify you by your eyes, but what about the people who don’t? They need the other elements to have a connection with you because what are they going to do, know, or feel by just seeing your eyes? And to bring it back to branding: this means why will they spend their money on YOU just by seeing your logo?

Your eyebrows, nose, and lips are your other brand elements – your submark, square logos, and graphic elements. The more your customers see these “statue” elements, together or apart, the more they will identify your business as a whole, creating a memorable visual connection.

The expression on your face is your positioning statement, showing the emotion you want your customers to feel. The subtle redness in your cheeks is a part of the color palette adding depth and dimension. Your freckles are the textures and patterns we create that add more emotion to your graphics. These create interest in your deliverables and make you stand out amongst competitors.

So, when you have that whole face put together and your brand is ready to launch, all you need to do is open your mouth, talk, and be you! Let your “face” become a natural thing, embrace those elements, and use them in everyday practice. Just like you do with your own various facial expressions throughout the day! Solid brand elements naturally become a part of your business brand and in turn, effects how your audience sees AND feels about you.

In conclusion, the difference between a logo and a brand is that the logo is part of the brand as a whole.

Why is “just a logo” not good enough for a strong brand?

A logo is a visual icon whose purpose is to represent a company. The thing is, they don’t define your entire brand identity. Think of some of your favorite brands and why they are your favorite. Chances are, it’s not simply because you like their logo. It’s something about their branding as a whole, their story, their quippy verbiage (hint: brand voice!), or imagery that grabs your attention and more importantly, keeps it.

By not having other essential elements to make up a brand identity, you miss out on that client experience from the beginning. Imagine seeing the Urban Outfitters logo and you instantly fall in love with it. Then you see some of their clothes on Instagram and they are a little pricey but you check it out. You walk in to the store and it’s set up just like a Marshalls with some nice fluorescent lighting, metal hangers with plastic color-coded tags. Woah, woah… that’s a way different vibe than what that logo! And the products showed – ESPECIALLY at that price point, right?!

This is where the well-rooted, foundational brand comes in! Urban Outfitters has multiple variations of their logos that they carry throughout their website, printed materials, digital materials, and in-store. They have textural and color elements they use and consistent fonts. They use lighting and other interior design techniques to showcase the brand through multiple mediums in the store itself. So when you walk in, you feel like a hipster and want to feel cool in all of those clothes. And this applies to ANY store, any company, no matter the size.

When you can keep your ideal clients coming back by providing an incredible experience from beginning to end, you will be successful! They trust you, they feel they are in reliable hands, and they want to spend their money with you over your competitors. And that’s the difference between “just a logo” and a brand!

In summary:

  • Your brand is how your audience views you.
  • Branding is how you, as a company, choose to convey the emotions and brand you want your audience to feel.
  • Brand elements are the individual pieces that make up your brand identity. These are variations of logos, color palette, fonts, brand voice, and essential establishing copy. More on this here!
  • A logo is one of the many brand elements needed to create an entire brand identity. Alone, it is an icon representing a company. Most brands have at least three alternate versions of a logo.
  • Your brand identity is the big picture – all of these things coming together to create an emotional and aesthetic connection with your audience with a solid foundation of purpose.

How do you get there? The first step is to download our FREE brand checklist to see where your brand stands up. Take the quiz to find out what areas your company needs a boost and then let’s make it happen!

Are you ready to take your brand to the next level? Let’s chat!

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February 13, 2021