This is part 6 in a 6 part series on the process of designing a brand from the ground up. This is the process that 6foot4 uses. We like it but feel free to agree or disagree and tell us about it in the comments. These articles are for Designers and Clients alike. Both groups could benefit from a little more education and discussion. If you are just joining this discussion you should start at the beginning to get some context.
Just when you thought all the hard work was done there is even more to do. A successful launch of a new brand identity needs to be carefully orchestrated and well supported. Start with an internal launch. This gives employees and management some time to familiarize themselves with the new identity and what the brand stands for. It is so very important that you are capable of communicating the essence of the brand internally before you present it publicly. Take some time to build a new context around who and what your brand is.
Standards and Guidelines
For a new brand identity to have longevity it needs to remain consistent and adhere to specific guidelines. This includes proper ways to use the logo and what not to do, information on color pallet, typography and a whole lot more. These guidelines are prepared in a document by the Designer and should be distributed to everyone. Even if an employee is never going to have the opportunity to use the logo on anything they should be aware at some level that these things are important and that consistency in brand identity is important.
Baby steps is the key here. Launch the new identity to key stakeholders. You don't want them be the last to know. They are an important piece to any business and including them in the launch builds that relationship and helps to get buy in on the new identity. These people are also usually very vocal in their support of a business and you want them to fully understand the brand before they go spreading info that is not consistent with the new identity.
Let it loose... but keep a close watch
As I've always said your brand lives in the perceptions of others. You have absolutely no control over what people think of you personally but you can make a good first impression. Sometimes you say something stupid and you need to apologize. The same goes for any brand. You've done the hard work to make a good first impression through this process and hopefully the brand resonates with people. The brand will go where people take it at this point but as it grows you'll need to stay on top of making clarifications when the message gets misconstrued or misunderstood. This is an never ending process and requires making unswerving commitments to the brand essence and principles back in the early phases of design. When done with authenticity and strategic planning a brand identity should last at least 10 years before you may need to make some any major course corrections.
This concludes the six part series about designing a new brand identity. I hope it has been helpful. There is obviously so much that just can't be written. If you are starting a new business or want to breath new life into an existing one, contact me, and we'll talk.