Looking at established companies throughout the years, you can see different evolutions of marketing brands and reaching out to the consumer in different ways. Many times when companies start out, they are focused on service and making the best product or service they can to bring in consumers. Other times they are in an entirely different industry such as IBM. They started out manufacturing mechanical time recorders and were called the International Time Recording Company (ITR). Eventually the logo and company evolved into what it is today. Through mergers, communication to their community and advertisements on many platforms IBM has changed.
When you talk about a brand, some people may think you’re talking about the logo. While that is part of it, the brand also pertains to many different things such as how people perceive your company and the promise of service when dealing with your company. Everything in a brand is linked to one another, the logomark affects the logotype which then affects the way a person sees the product. Take Coca-Cola for example, a child who has never seen Coca-Cola before goes to a store and sees it in their eye line where most sodas are. She sees the red color of the wrapper around the bottle, the color red usually attracts the eye as it tends to be the most vibrant and distinct color on a shelf next to greens, yellows and oranges. She goes closer and sees the classic font that is always on the bottle, she thinks it looks fun and decorative and buys it. She drinks it and she likes it, that’s all the first step to a good brand. The design of the logo paired with the right color of bright red in front of the brown soda to give the bottle a nice contrast and aesthetic are all a part of getting the initial buy. From there they see how they are perceived in the media, “the soda tastes great”, “it’s the only thing I drink”. Positive reception in the community brings way for commercials and ads in the paper about Coca-Cola. It’s so successful that it’s distributed everywhere and it’s used as a generic term for almost any soda.
After all that, the same girl who is now a woman goes to the store. She’s at the soda aisle and she sees a variety of different sodas, some old and a lot new. Through all of the bright packaging and new exciting flavors she sees a regular glass bottle with the words Coca-Cola printed in white on the front. No fancy displays with only other color being a red top. It’s a simple design and one that goes back to the beginning of the company when it was just a glass bottle with the name on it. She picks Coca-Cola over the rest; because throughout the years of things coming and going and mistakes along the way, the Coca-Cola brand has always been reliable with same taste it always had. That is what a brand encompasses: reliability, comfort, communication when things go wrong (New Coke). They evolved with their audience, but were able to keep what made them successful.
In the end a brand is what you make of it. It can be just a logo if you want it to be or it could be what your company stands for, from your logo all the way to how you use social media, and a brand can change with the times and evolve to stay current, but remember what got you to a position of success and center your brand redesign around that.