Brand? branding? or brand identity?

Arek Dvornechuck
4 min readFeb 6, 2017


There are many misconceptions about when to use the words brand, branding & brand identity. Often, I can hear people using them as interchangeable synonyms everyday. However, they don’t mean the same.

What is a brand?

A brand is often perceived as the logo or identity. But really, it’s much more than that. Brand is a definition of an emotional relationship between customers and the business.

A brand is a person’s gut feeling about a company.

Every day we discover new products and new businesses. Competition creates infinite choices and companies look for ways to connect emotionally with customers, become irreplaceable and create lifelong relationships.

What is a brand? — Brand is a relationship.

A strong brand stands out in a densely crowded marketplace. People fall in love with brands, trust them, and believe in their superiority. Take Apple as an example. There are brand fanatics out there who will buy their products even if it’s not any better or cheaper than the competition. How a brand is perceived affects its success.

Brand is a promise to customers. Delivering on a promise will keep customers happy and continue to build confidence in the brand.

What is brand identity?

Brand identity is tangible and appeals to the senses. Brand identity is what you can see. It fuels recognition, amplifies differentiation, and makes big ideas and meaning accessible.

You see it , touch it, hold it, hear it, watch it move.

The goal of a brand identity designer is to find artifacts that tell your story and engage people with who you are in a familiar and meaningful way. That means ensuring every time your artifacts show up, they are consistent in their appearance, use, size, scope, color, feel, etc.

What is Brent Identity? — Brand Identity is what we can see.

Consistency allows your audience to build a memory structure around who you are and what value you have to offer. This memory structure becomes the brand identity of your organization.

Generally speaking, brand identity takes disparate elements and unifies them
into whole systems.

Therefore, the best identity programs embody and advance the company’s brand by supporting desired perceptions. After all, design plays an essential role in creating and building brands. In fact, design differentiates and embodies the intangibles — emotion, context, and essence — that matter most to consumers.

With that being said, brand identity is what we designers actually do. We do not design a brand, but what we design is brand identity. A designer’s job is to create a desired perception by using any means available in terms of visual language.

What is branding?

So if brand is a relationship and brand identity is a design then you might already figured out that branding is the process.

Branding is much more than the visual components.

It is a disciplined process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product, company or service in the consumers’ mind. And is done so mainly through advertising campaigns with a consistent theme. With the consistent use of the brand identity and the brand strategy underlying it.

What is Branding? — Branding is a process.

Branding is about seizing every opportunity to express why people should choose one brand over another. Companies leverage branding as a desire to lead, outpace the competition, and give employees the best tools to reach customers. In other words. It’s communication of characteristics, values, and attributes that clarify what this particular brand is and is not.

To sum up

What is brand? — it’s a relationship between customers and the business.
What is brand identity? — it’s what we can see, it’s the design of the brand.
What is branding? — it’s a process of building awareness and extent loyalty.

With that being said, let’s not skip on the basics and use these words properly. Once you start using them in context, you will remember
its meaning, and you can always refer to this article.

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