branding branding

Successful business branding in print and online

August 11, 2015

If you’re going to spend the money to brand your business – and yes, you should spend the money to brand your business – it seems logical that you could then use that branding across different media platforms, right?

Right! However there are some caveats to consider. When done well, cross-platform branding can make your business look and perform well. Done inappropriately, it can cripple your business potential.

Let’s start at the beginning. Your business brand, according to Entrepreneur, is your promise to your customer. It conveys what can be expected and how your business is different than others. It isn’t just a logo or a color scheme. It is your business “voice,” from the tone of written communication to visual images.

Here are five tips to successfully translating your print brand to an online brand.

Be consistent, but not the same.

A successful brand can get across the same message without literally getting across the same message. Bottom line: What works in print doesn’t always work online. You may have a killer brochure, but it works because people hold it in their hands. They flip it. They fold it. Your website can convey the same visual feel of a brochure, but optimize that content for website delivery. Not only optimize it for web delivery, but optimize it for mobile web delivery. That leads us to the next tip.

Never, ever, ever use a PDF or Word document to communicate anything important about your business.

If you think a customer will want to download a document in order to read text about your business services, you will quickly lose potential customers. Forcing users to download files in order to gather information negates the purpose of a website. Make it easy for them (and search engines) to find the information they need and put the text on the website itself.

Be mindful of load times.

Print media are a great way to load up customers with beautiful imagery, text styling and design elements. Websites are no different, only the beautiful imagery is optimized for quick loading, text styling is streamlined and design elements are used to complement content, not be the content.

Don’t let your brand kill your brand.

UX Magazine describes how many corporate branding guides are incredibly specific and narrow. The brand standards are taken so literally that the online realm sacrifices user experience for the exact colors – and only the exact colors – dictated for print use. A strongly horizontal logo won’t work on many social media, and if you attempt to use that horizontal logo then it may not be legible. Remember our definition of branding from Entrepreneur: It is your promise to your customer. Does that mean you’re promising they will only see dark blue and yellow, or does that mean when they see graphic elements presented with your business style that they will associate that with your business? Hopefully you answered the latter.

Develop your brand with interaction in mind.

If you don’t already have a business brand, get started on one knowing that it will be used across different technologies and platforms. A truly successful brand is one that lets customers know who you are without explicitly saying it. This is done through colors, font, design elements and word usage. When developing a business logo, be sure it is flexible enough to work in different dimensions. You’ll want a logo that will look as good on letterhead as it does in the tiny square of a Twitter profile. You’ll want a color family that can consistently convey your brand regardless of what else is around it, such as other business logos on a brochure or the blue and gray layout on Facebook feeds.

Branding is no simple task. It requires a lot of forethought and strategy. The branding experts at Cube Creative Design have years of experience crafting professional brands. Contact us today to learn more.

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