Ways to use corporate images to supercharge branding on the social Web

July 23rd, 2012 by | 1 Comment

Image by niseag03

Using visual communications is one of the best ways to define a brand’s identity and deliver its message to the public. With a single artwork, a photo, or even the choice of colors, companies can put into motion a lot of things that can help elevate their branding efforts on the social Web. When well-planned and done right, visual communications can help brands convey a message, elicit emotions, shape public opinion, and even get people to stand up and do something.

The following is a quick rundown of the most common visual components a brand can develop and use on their online and offline marketing tactics. Aside from establishing and enriching your company’s identity and online branding, you can also consistently wield these in any way you can in order to boost engagements and forge a solid relationship with your growing followers.


Branding Components

Even with the redesign last year,
Starbuck’s logo continuous to
exemplify the company’s dedication
to providing quality products to its consumers.

When it comes to branding, companies will need to allocate resources to develop the right visual components for them. The immediate goals here include solidifying your public image, properly positioning your brand in your industry to match your targeted demographic.

  • Logos
    Among the first things brands develop, logos are the primary symbols people will associate with the company. It will most likely appear on all marketing materials, on the brand’s Web sites, and all its social profiles. As such, it’s important to design a logo that’s unique, clean, and easy to remember.
  • Official Colors
    As part of their brand designs, most companies today have their own official colors. Some were chosen because they simply looked nice, while others were most likely picked for two reasons:

  • Coca-cola remains to be one of the most recognizable brands around the world.

    Font / Typography
    Using specific kinds of typefaces can help enrich a company’s branding. Like colors and logos, there are a lot of basic fonts types you can choose from, or you can even create your own. Each font face can bring about different kinds of aesthetic, charm and feel that can emphasize a brand identity.


Brand Ambassadors

Another thing businesses can do is get a brand ambassador. Aside from your static logo, icons and other designs, brands can definitely benefit from having brand ambassadors representing their company on marketing materials on both offline advertising platforms, and on the social Web.

“Adorable” isn’t exactly how you’d describe dough and other baking products…
…but the Pillsbury Doughboy makes it work.

Brand ambassadors can be celebrities or a bunch of regular Joes hired to represent the company as a spokesperson. They can be actual people or just hired actors playing a role. Or they can be fictitious mascot like anthromorphized objects (M&M’s, Spam, Pillsbury Doughboy, etc) or animals (Energizer Bunny, the Geico Gecko, etc).

In any case, these brand ambassadors can represent the brand or at least be the instrument that showcases the products. As you may know, a face with its distinct features and expressions can help provide an equally distinct personality for the brand, helping people remember brands better, perceive particular

Two great examples of campaigns that successfully made use of brand ambassadors are Old Spice and BlendTec.

  • Tom Dickson is BlendTec’s founder and has become a bit of an Internet celebrity through the brand’s social media marketing campaign Will it Blend. His relaxed, fun-loving uncle/young grampa image helped humanize an otherwise boring brand and product, and created a lot of buzz for the company. Not only did it show how powerful their blenders are, the campaign also expanded the target audience that normally would’ve only consisted of homemakers and companies.
  • Old Spice hired former football player Isiah Mustafa to play a hilariously deadpan spokesperson that bordered on the absurd and excessively macho. The company aimed for the campaign to primarily target housewives that actually did the purchasing of toiletries at home, and grab the attention of the male population with its random kind humor. This helped boost the company’s sale, propel Mustafa’s career, and inspired a ton of parodies online.

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