Why most entrepreneurs cannot see the value in visual identity?
As the owner of the company, you sit comfortably in your office chair, look at the monitor screen and see your company's results. There are revenues, fixed costs, variable costs, profits, short and long-term statistics. Every month, your marketing manager provides you with the results of his advertising campaigns - conversion, CPI, KPI, leads and other incomprehensible for most ordinary people things. What does this mean? It shows how entrepreneurs like to have their results shown in black and white and how their investments turn into profits. What does the case look like when creating a company image?
Measuring an improvement or change of image is not as simple (if you can even say that analytics is simple) as in the case of a single campaign, where we have input and output data and can control and analyze the whole process.
How can you measure how did the rebranding carried out at Company X a year ago turn into profits? One could say that one can compare the profits from the previous year with the current ones. However, it should be remembered that such measurement only makes sense if the entrepreneur has stagnated for a year, did not carry out any additional campaigns, and the market situation has not changed.
Rebranding itself is also often associated with conducting an advertising campaign to inform customers about the change, which means that the process of its implementation is part of marketing. This is also another factor that makes it difficult to measure the effectiveness of the rebranding, because on what basis can we determine whether the increased number of clients is a fact of the advertising campaign itself or a change of image? How about both?
Neither will make it easier to conduct a survey or an interview. Finding the right questions to ask and selecting the target audience is not easy. Now, let’s consider whether a regular customer who is used to the current brand image will be enthusiastic about the change? Probably not, because assimilating new information for such lazy creatures as us – humans – simply requires effort. That is why we often have to deal with a hate and misunderstanding when changing the visual identity of large brands. After some time people get used to the new image and forget about the old one.
So – since the largest companies like Apple, Porto, Google, Uber, Blabla Car, Lufthansa, Pepsi and others are working on their image, isn’t it worth doing it also in smaller companies? Apart from the very aspect of measuring the effectiveness of introducing the new visual identity, it is an undeniable fact that customers trust more in brands that present themselves professionally, i.e., coherently, according to their archetype, aesthetically and distinctively. Additionally, having organized identification, entrepreneurs and marketing managers have the tools to make their brand materials look this way.
Returning to measuring the effectiveness of introducing a new image, theoretically it is easier when you change product packaging. We can carry out research in the category of product decision-making by the customer who sees it for the first time (to exclude preferences for something that he has already tried) and suggest him the choice based on the packaging itself. If the majority of the surveyed group chooses a new one, it is likely to have a positive impact on customer decision making. Unfortunately, small companies cannot usually afford such tests, because apart from the test itself, a prototype of the packaging has to be created — graphics and physical packaging, and sometimes even several variants.
It is completely understandable to me that entrepreneurs who cannot see the difference in packaging aesthetics or do not feel how the packaging and even the whole visual identity can influence decision making, decide to use semiprofessional designers or amateurs — “if there is no difference, then why should I pay more”. — they might ask.
For as long as I can remember I have always struggled with the problem of presenting hard data on how the implementation of the new visual identity affected sales.
In my work, I usually provide examples of large brands or provide anecdotal evidence that tells how brands have changed after the introduction of the new identification, and for those who can see the difference – I just show the image before and after. Alternatively, I can always use the research of others according to which e.g:
- the colors increase brand recognition by 80% (according to Forbes research)
- 94% of users leave the website if its graphics are poor (according to Red Website Design research)
- 10 seconds – that’s how long it takes on average for a person to form an initial opinion about the brand based on the logo itself
- consistent branding increases the company’s revenues by 23% (according to Fit Small Business research)
- 77% of B2B marketing leaders say that branding is key to growth (according to Circle Research)
Can therefore good visual identification affect the real profits of the brand? Definitely! Some brands base their products only on good design. Can I prove that change will have a positive impact on any company? Not at all, it’s impossible and no selfrespecting designer can promise that. And yet it’s worth it and I believe that I deliver the best possible value to the brands that are on the market.