Brand meaning: Research the brand identity

Stuart Chapman
The Big Picture

A visual identity distils the values and personality of a brand into a single logo but researching it is a challenge, requiring people to verbalise implicit communications. Stuart Chapman of The Big Picture suggests three research principles are necessary: context, avoiding side-by-side comparisons and first impressions.

Look at the biggest brands in the world and you'll find a common thread running through them: a strong brand visual identity (BVI). Whether it is a symbol, such as Nike's Swoosh, a wordmark like Coca-Cola, a monogram like IBM, or an alternative graphic device, each has a simple, bold mark. Undoubtedly, there are many other factors that have led to these brands' success. But when you consider that most of these companies' market value is tied up in an intangible cloud marked 'brand value', rather than their physical assets such as factories or stock, it's hard not to think of strong BVIs as significant contributors.