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Top 8 Branding Elements that Every Successful Company Has

Branding elements come in all shapes and sizes; however, these top eight components lie at the core of every successful company identity.

12 min read

Branding elements come in all shapes and sizes. As the cornerstones of every successful company representation out there, they are building bricks (sometimes tangible, sometimes not) that come together to shape a visual, auditory, and olfactory brand identity.

Ironically, despite being crucial to the company's thrive, they often stay underestimated and overlooked. Recent studies show that most startups, small companies, and young entrepreneurs believe that elements of branding are just simple graphics. In addition, more than half of them confuse branding with a website while others rely everything on just a single logo because, in their opinion, it is one of the key elements of branding, and that is all they need to succeed.

However, as practice shows, that is not enough. Logotype, whatever intricate and clever, cannot alone nurture and reinforce brand identity throughout the company's lifecycle. The deal is there are much more ways to experience the brand and build a company's presence in the digital and the real world than that.

Creating a strong brand that sees through the competition, carves a niche for itself, and occupies a strong position in the market, either local or global, demands the company to master branding design elements. Nowadays, every professional branding and design agency develops a whole range of corporate branding elements because they, more than anyone else, are aware of the importance of branding elements in marketing and all other spheres and sectors.

Let us dive into this subject a bit deeper. This guide will define the top eight branding elements used by successful companies as well as display some exceptional brand elements examples.

Branding Elements Definition

According to surveys, almost everyone can recognize branding when they see it; however, when it comes to defining elements of branding or types of brand elements, most respondents experience difficulties. So, what is what? Let us start with the essentials and give brand elements definition.

What Is Brand Element?

Brand element is an instance that identifies and differentiates the company from the competition. It is developed in a way that allows it to be

  • meaningful (to represent values and philosophy of the company),
  • memorable (to leave an indelible and permanent imprint in customers' minds),
  • adaptable (to meet current requirements, demands, and expectations of the target audience),
  • transferrable (to bring value and stick to the identity across various sections, fields, niches, cultures, and products),
  • and protectable (to be legal).

As you can see, some of the branded elements are tangible while others are not. This diversity helps to improve the company's presence through various perspectives. Let us consider each one closely.

Layout of Identity Elements | image by Karolina Shnurova

Brand Purpose and Vision

Everything starts with the brand's purpose and vision. These two fundamental components define the very existence of the company. Why are you here? What do you want to achieve?

Technically, brand purpose determines the meaning of the work and the company's existence, whereas brand vision defines the company's image and what impact it should make in the future.

Some companies believe that these two boils down to generating money and showing yourself. However, when it comes to big names and successful startups, brand purpose and vision are centered on making the world a better place and helping customers solve their issues faster, cheaper, and more effortless.

Brand Mission and Values

Although brand vision, purpose, and mission are often used interchangeably, they are different brand elements that play their corresponding roles.

According to marketing terminology, the brand vision describes what the company should look like in the future, whereas the brand mission states what the company does and for whom.

Brand mission clarifies the commitment that a firm makes to achieve its purpose. It is closely connected to brand values since they lie at the core of corporate identity and navigate the way a brand behaves in the market. As a set of beliefs that the company stands for, they also guide the brand story, actions, behaviors, and decision-making process.

Brand Mission and Values | image by Polina Zimmerman

Brand Name

The brand name is one of the main pillars of the brand's visual elements. It is also considered to be the most influential and memorable one. Not only does it represent the company at the first acquaintance with the audience, but most importantly, it leaves an imprint in clients' minds and creates a link between the company's identity essentials (vision, values, and mission) and target audience. Therefore, it plays a crucial role in a brand's perception during the entire company's life.

The great brand names owe such qualities as:

  • Originality;
  • Authenticity;
  • Meaningfulness;
  • Memorability;
  • Catchiness.
Microsoft by Mert Cünnük

Brand Logotype

According to studies done by Renderforest in 2021, 75% of respondents agree that the logotype is the most recognizable element of visual identity. Therefore, it is no surprise that it occupies the top position among its fellow corporate branding elements and strategies.

At its core, the logotype is just a graphical component or image. However, it is increasingly intricate and sophisticated because it represents the personality of the company, encompasses the brand identity, and with all that, stays recognizable, understandable, and memorable.

As a rule, it is everywhere: on a website, digital emails, social media pages, advertising, stationery, merchandise, etc.

Qualities of a good logo are:

  • Simplicity;
  • Relevance;
  • Memorability;
  • Timelessness;
  • Versatility.
Apple Store Concept by OBRIY.architects

Brand Message

There are numerous elements of branding in marketing. However, the brand message is one of the most influential. It is a way to convey the company’s ideas, vision, and purpose to the target audience. It is a sort of communication pattern that builds strong relationships with people.

Developed at the outset and sometimes at the intermediate stages during the company's lifecycle, the brand message lies at the brand's core, sets the direction to move forward, and provides other corporate branding elements with the design guidance.

Just Do It by Pacshot Studio

Brand Voice

Brand identity elements are not always visible; sometimes, they are perceptible through other senses or deliverable through other means of communication. One of such elements of brand identity is brand voice.

Brand voice is a company's personality when connecting with the target audience through chats or print media. It is increasingly important in the era of social media and the obsession with user experiences based on personal assistants.

The brand voice aims to help the company be great at storytelling and revealing the brand in a distinctive, unique, and authentic way that strengthens the brand image and identity. It also makes the brand come to life by skillfully representing the company's characteristic traits and evoking the necessary gamut of emotion.

Last but not least, brand language is also a part of brand voice and tone. Big names often create a unique branded vocabulary. This makes them not only stand out from the competition and shape the company the way they want but, most importantly, grasp a golden opportunity to become a part of the culture or become a synonym of field or niche.

Brand Color Palette

Do you know that almost 90% of customers agree that color is the most influential factor in their decision-making process? According to marketing studies, that is not all; color alone increases a brand's recognition by 80%.

Whatever mainstreams are, an oldie but goodie brand color palette can make or break your company's presence and existence in the market, simply because it is one of those components of a brand identity that most affects consumers' purchase behavior.

Developing an effective brand color palette is a true challenge. However, when it is well-done, it helps the company stand out from the competition, bring home the right message, convey the brand's values, and leave a long-lasting impression.

Brand Colors

Brand Graphics

Graphics (images, illustrations, icons, mascots, etc.) are components of a brand that portray the brand's values and vision and, at the same time, command attention, produce a positive impression, and help customers feel a part of the company. They also align with the brand's philosophy and vision.

Brand graphics do such vital things:

  • They increase recognition of the company.
  • They create a uniform look.
  • They amplify the consistency through various distribution channels.
  • They appeal to the ideal customer.
  • They help to widen the audience by making the message shareable.
  • They enhance and reinforce storytelling.

Like logotype, brand graphics can be seen everywhere: they are part of digital presence (website, email newsletter, social media profile, etc.) and real-world presence (flyers, brochures, advertisement, merchandise, etc.)

Branded graphics on merchandise

Importance of Brand Elements

All components of brand identity are strategic. Whether it is a brand mission, logo, or packaging, it is crucial for every business regardless of niche, age, audience, and scale. Even though it is not obligatory to develop all brand identity components (your company can survive with the top eight that we have discussed lately), still all of them come of colossal importance for business.

Branding Elements Examples

1. Adobe

Adobe is one of the most famous product identity examples in the digital World. This American multinational computer software company has carved the whole niche for itself, generating a staggering revenue of 12.86 billion in 2020.

Much like Apple, the company falls into the Creator brand archetype group. This means that the team is all about innovation and creativity. They are the first to introduce a new technology or provide a unique combination of benefits inside one product. Their marketing strategy is based on the premise that they should empower customers to express their creativity through various mediums and channels.

Note these crucial elements of the brand:

  • The company has an unmistakable logotype and slogan that meet its mission and vision.
  • The brand team has developed a whole range of icons, so to say a vocabulary, to connect with the target audience on their terms.
  • Their advertisements celebrate innovation and creativity.
  • They promote freedom of creativity in all their products.
  • They have a vast portfolio of products perfectly aligned with the brand’s vision.
  • All their products are made with the same goal in mind.
  • They constantly experiment with their products and features to push their creative side forward.

2. Google

You can hardly find a person in the world who has never heard about Google. They have even coined the term "Google it." Not only do Google's aficionados use it on a daily basis but also musicians in their songs and actors in movies.

Indeed, this multinational technology company that first and foremost specializes in providing the most accurate search across the internet took the web by storm several decades ago. Nowadays, it is one of the most successful brands with $258 billion in revenue. Among the brand elements examples, it occupies the leading position.

Unlike Adobe, Google is a representative of the Sage brand archetype group. This means its mission is to seek and share knowledge, truth, and wisdom with others. As a result, it is widely associated with a trusted source of information and a solid foundation for people to develop their expertise and broaden their experience. It is safe to say that more than 20 years ago, Google opened the path to knowledge for people across five continents.

Note these vital brand identity elements:

  • They have an iconic logotype and color scheme.
  • They provide a consistent user experience across platforms.
  • They have coined a phrase to deliver their brand message more efficiently.
  • They nurture their customers with all sorts of projects starting with Google doodles and ending with Santa tracker.
  • They constantly improve the credibility and trustworthiness of a brand.

3. Dollar Shave Club

We have mentioned this unique company in our previous guide, and we could not help but bring it up here because as a small startup that reached for the stars in 2016, it has one of the most inspiring examples of brand elements.

Using the paradigm of the Jester archetype, the team was managed to launch the business and compete with such famous names as Gillette. People widely associate the brand with good times and memories thanks to their intelligent campaigns and taking a witty angle on traditional products. They constantly use the right amount of humor to connect with the target audience.

Note these essential elements of a brand identity:

  • They have an iconic logo.
  • They have a powerful brand message.
  • They pursue consistency in their online presence through distribution channels.
  • They constantly nurture their consumers with original and sometimes humorous advertisements that fit their brand archetype.

4. Nike

"Just do it" – I bet you heard this catchy phrase once or twice in your life. Nike is our next case in point since it has mastered a core identity of a brand examples.

This major American producer of athletic shoes, apparel, and sports equipment can give a whole bunch of lessons to startups on how to win the World in several years and successfully rule it for decades.

As a proud representative of the Hero archetype group, it delivers innovative products and experiences to inspire athletes all around the World. Their mission is to make the world a better place. And they are doing an excellent job. As proof of that, Nike is a current symbol of sport.

Note these vital corporate elements of the brand:

  • They have an iconic logo that even has its name, "swoosh."
  • They have an iconic tagline that taps into their customers' ambitions.
  • Their corporate identity sticks to their vision and mission.
  • They have a well-established brand tone and voice.
  • They constantly collaborate with famous athletes and sponsor sports events, increasing their credibility and trustworthiness.
  • They populate visual identity components through all their merchandise.
Nike | Image by Deybson Mallony

5. Disney

Not only do companies that sell their products from store shelves have outstanding brand identity elements, but also entertainment and media conglomerates who operate in the multimedia world. Disney provides us with an incredible example of brand identity elements.

The company is the Magician brand archetype whose aim is to provide transformative experiences that turn ordinary into extraordinary. Much like Adobe (the Creator brand archetype), they maximize imagination and creativity, promoting these qualities through their products.

Disney and its products, including merchandise, animated movies, and theme parks, are all about sparkling magic into people's ordinary lives.

Note these vital brand identity components:

  • They have an iconic logotype, font, icon, and mascot.
  • They constantly take consumers on a transformative journey, thereby promoting and supporting their brand vision, purpose, and mission.
  • They offer a holistic, memorable, and attractive brand experience across all distribution channels.
  • They nurture their consumers with branded merchandise and brand graphics, including illustrations, mascots, and icons.

Conclusion

In 2022, consumers experience companies through various mediums: websites, social media, digital emails, in-store, etc. Creating a bold name and eye-catching logotype is not enough to earn a place under the Sun. Whatever sector you are in, whatever target audience you serve, and whatever goal you have, you will need all help that you can get from brand identity components.

Along with just identifying the company on the market, they offer numerous benefits. For instance, they inspire trust, drum up interest, cement relationships with consumers, fight the competition, generate money and prolong the life of your beloved idea. Today we have listed the top eight elements of a brand. However, there are much more of them in marketing.

For instance, we have not mentioned the Archetype element that plays a crucial role in building brand strategies. As a generic, idealized model, it is a Northern star for companies during their decision-making process. Defined by Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung, it describes 12 different personalities with typical behavioral patterns, values, and motivations applied to the branding. It helps companies create brand pieces and strategies that connect with the target audience on the emotional level, thereby amplifying the overall effect.

Brand identity elements are diverse. Each one improves the brand's presence from its perspective. Therefore, all of them are increasingly important for the business to thrive.