Don’t you love it when someone recognizes your logo? Their eyes light up, they look up from your business card and say “I know you!” It’s a great feeling because it means a very important aspect of your marketing is working. Recognition of your company’s “visual system” is an important first step to shortening the entire purchasing cycle.
Your company’s visual system encompasses many separate components: Logo, font, color palette, images, and even white space. Each of these elements must work together harmoniously to instantly identify you to the world.
But know this: your logo and the rest of your visual system are not your brand.
Your brand exists elsewhere. Your brand, in fact, probably does not exist where you think it might. You don’t have it. Your brand is not what you say it is; your brand is what consumers say it is. Whatever people say about you and your travel practice is what your brand is. The center of gravity exists somewhere beyond your desk.
Do you know the Planet 9 theory? The public’s effect on your brand is more than theoretical, but no less dramatic.
Certainly you can influence and shape your brand. That, in fact, is the goal of marketing. But your reputation in the communities you have chosen is your brand. Remember, too, that we all have a brand. You don’t have to own the travel company you work for to have a brand. As an individual travel planner, your clients have opinions about who you are and how good you are at what you do.
A brand is a promise of quality. A brand is a shortcut for what you stand for as a travel practitioner. So as we discuss the most visible aspect of your brand this week, think beyond appearances to promises. It’s important to have a great looking visual system.
It’s more important to keep your promises.