Identity: Visual, Verbal, Behavioural, Sensorial

Identity: Visual, Verbal, Behavioural, Sensorial​

What is it and why is it important?

Your identity is the expression of your positioning and personality through visual, verbal, behavioural and sensorial cues.

For your brand this is incredibly important as it assists people in remembering your brand and recalling what it stands for. We call this a mnemonic.

Purple is Cadbury. The shhhhh sound is Schweppes. There is a perfect pour for Guinness. “Would you like fries with that?” symbolises McDonald’s service proposition.  The triangular chip is Doritos.  

To make it easy for people to find you in the market with fragmented media and crowded with choice, it is important for you to represent your brand consistently whilst allowing for flexibility relevant to the environment. We call this “fix and flex”.

For your employer brand, employee engagement communications, customer value propositions and campaigns, there will be some level of association and alignment with the parent brand, and some room for flexibility so that its relevant to the audience and can be found amongst your portfolio as well as the market as a whole. Your portfolio strategy and brand architecture will help inform this. 

When developing your identity, there will be an audit of the category and competitors. Through this, we will identify category cues. This is so you can decide which ones you want to associate with to help people know what your brand is and does, and which ones you don’t so you can stand out or apart. For example, in the healthy eating category, there is a lot of green. Do you choose green to be associated with the healthy category or is there no way to be seen in the crowd and you’re offering a different angle on health, so you choose to use a different colour?

Semiotics is another consideration. Defined as the science of studying signs and symbols relevant to culture, it’s the additional meaning or mental associations beyond the immediate, physical existence that sparks people’s subconscious. Through creating your identity, verbal signs, visual signs and symbolic messages are embedded in all aspects of your identity, as well as across applications in your communications, packaging and collateral. It is worthwhile consulting a semiotician to ensure that those signs and messages are what you want to be communicated. This is particularly important in some cultures where there is a long history of signs and symbols brought into modern day living.

How we go about it

  1. Briefing and planning
  2. Category, competitor, brand identity audits
  3. Input any strategy (positioning and personality, customer value proposition, employer brand, portfolio strategy, brand architecture, organising idea)
  4. Develop the identity brief and platform
  5. Initial concepts, presenting 2-3 routes across visual, tone of voice, behavioural and sensorial identity
  6. Concept development of 1-2 routes across 5 key applications including initial copy lines
  7. Concept refinement of 1 route across 5 key applications including copy and headlines or sub-heads
  8. Concept finalisation to final artwork

Our experience in this area

Our managing director, Rachel Bevans, has prior experience on client-side with Continental Bouillons (Unilever), Glenfiddich Single Malt Whisky (global),; and consulting on Mars Seeds of Change, Cruzan Rum, Level Vodka and Ballantine’s Whisky (Dragon), United Business Media and De Montfort University (Radley Yeldar), Mars Dove Chocolate China (Flamingo).

Over the last nine years, we have provided strategic direction for identity based on the brand positioning for Sumo Salad, Larktale, Mineler, Australian Fitness Network, FitnessU and Transport NSW Cyber Security Advisory; The Mentally Healthy Workplace and ODPP (with Folk).  

How can we help you? 

Contact Us

Please contact us to discuss further what we can do for you. 

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