Right now, your business is in a crowd of competitors. Some are smaller, some larger, but all are making a lot of noise in their efforts to sell. You could ignore them if you wanted to, but the problem is that you also want to be heard. How do you not only break out of the crowd so that you can be seen, but make your voice heard over all the clamor? You need a megaphone, a banner that will draw attention to your message, your product, your service. Today we want to talk about some ways that you can set yourself apart from the competition by concentrating on some strategies for visual and physical presence.
The Memory of Marketing
Signs.com published a fascinating study recently in which 156 Americans were asked to draw 10 logos belonging to major brands currently operating in the U.S. and worldwide. They were given no other references but the names, among these Apple, Starbucks, and Burger King.
The results were tabulated from least to most realistic for each logo, with attention given to whether or not they had the right composition of elements, the right colors and placement, and the correct name, if any. The results are interesting but not surprising: Most remembered colors correctly, also the general shapes and how they were positioned relative to one another, and any recognizable characters. A factor of note is that the participants were between 20 and 70 years old, and some remembered older versions of the logos, like Adidas’ trefoil. From this we can make some powerful inferences of how we perceive and recall a business’ visual representation of itself, and plan to use them for great effect.
The Color of Attention
When it comes to color, one has to consider human psychology as well as demographics. Orange, for example. What does that evoke to you? Orange is bright, bold, and friendly- it’s also a juicy fruit of the same name. Would the logos of Crush and Fanta’s orange sodas be as effective if they used a different color?
Yellow is optimistic but glaring, useful for objects like children’s toys or safety signs. Red is complex, reminding us of fire and danger, but also romance. Red is classic, red is passionate, red is an appetite stimulant used to advantage by countless restaurants. Blue is calm, loyal, and professional, with links to the military and police. Sometimes color psychology is very subtle; for instance, did you know that surgical scrubs are green because it is the color found to be easiest on the eye? Or that holding cells are often painted pink for its subduing effect?
Speaking Their Language
Your branding should be suited to your audience’s demographics, needs, and tastes. Companies that miss the mark here are often lampooned across media channels, missing out on sales, with the clients they were seeking turned off and existing clients feeling ignored or alienated.
Never make that mistake. Make sure that your values are placed front and center, and that they are presented in a way that the customer can clearly perceive and relate to them. Believe it or not, a logo can make some pretty complex statements in a simple design. Is it any accident that the Ikea logo is blue and yellow, the colors of the Swedish flag and a callback to the aesthetic sensibility of their wares? Intellectual, environmentally-conscious, and predominately young, Starbucks fans find it easy to resonate with the siren’s flowing green lines, open arms, and Mona Lisa smile.
What’s My Name?
Your branding should be suited to your name. Most companies use their names in their visual branding, but you can and should go deeper. Apple is an obvious example, using an image of the fruit that makes them instantly recognizable, name or no name. The apple has been depicted with Isaac Newton, in rainbow, in blue, in silver, and now black, but it has always been an apple. Domino’s uses a domino tile, tilted, with two dots on the bottom half and one on the top. The first incarnation was red and white, but each permutation since then has been red, white, and blue. Burger King has its business name placed snugly in a bun. The point is, no matter what you sell, you can make your market know who you are and what you do even if the name falls off your sign. Which, with cutting-edge digital signage, it never will.
Something to Hold on To
An often-overlooked but effective part of marketing is to make your brand 3d. Give your clients something to hold in their hands- basically, make it real. Branded merchandise is an excellent way to make your brand “sticky,” which is exactly what it sounds like. Being sticky refers to your customers being stuck to your brand, whether it’s because you’ve cornered the market, it’s difficult to switch services, or because you gave them their favorite pen that they used until it dried up, the tote bag they take to the farmers’ market every weekend, and the glass they got from the pub where they met their best friend. Digital HD Advertising’s clients can’t get enough of our tall, sleek pint glasses that put company logos in people’s hands and in front of their eyes. You can make your brand something that your market is always happy to see.
Digital advertising is the perfect way to get your brand in front of people’s eyes, bring it to life with expert design, and make it interactive by going beyond the virtual and into the physical world. Purposeful marketing that is well-targeted and shareable earns an excellent return on investment, and keeps wasted time and funds down. The user who associates your brand with having their problem solved, positive interactions, and consistent values will be the client who comes back again and again. Let’s take your marketing to the next level with memorable imagery and merchandise that will earn a greater following through positive association and effective presence.