All successful brands have one core element in common, consistency. Would we all have memorized the Nike slogan (“Just do it.”) if their marketing team used a new slogan for every product? Would we be able to see a yellow “M” and instantly think of McDonalds if the color changed every week? Brand recognition is difficult to achieve. However, once it is acquired, that brand can then work its way into the consumer’s evoked set. This essentially means that your brand is then stuck in their head, for quick recollection when needed, which is exactly where we want it.
Let’s be real, no matter how many times he changes his name, we will always call him P. Diddy. He can go back and forth with Puff Daddy and Diddy, but when we talk about him, we say P. Diddy. The same goes for your business. If you want consumers to recognize your brand, your brand should stick to the same name. Even brands as big as P. Diddy, have difficulty in being able to continue brand recognition with name inconsistency.
Here is where things get complicated–there is a huge difference in updating your logo, and changing your logo. The marketing world is aware of the constant need to evolve, and believes companies should have the opportunity to evolve too, however, the distinction between evolving and full-on changing your logo is the difference between aiding brand recognition and inhibiting it. We’ve all looked at old Coca-Cola logos and thought to ourselves how cool it is that their brand logo has evolved, but we’ve never not been able to recognize that logo as Coca-Cola. With the red accents and cursive writing, there was never a time Coca-Cola was unrecognizable, yet we can see that the company has grown. If your company has plans to update your logo, make sure the core elements that make your logo recognizable are still intact.
A key element that makes your brand unique is the color palette. While updating your logo, the color scheme should not be altered, by any means. Your colors are what first catch the consumer’s eye, and it would not be beneficial to change that. Certain colors evoke certain emotions in consumers, so when choosing your company color, make sure that it resonates with your company’s values. For instance, the color blue is known to elicit feelings of trust, safety, and invitation. HMG Creative’s primary color is blue. Coincidence? I think not.
Your online vernacular, the type of content you post, and your media outlet should all remain consistent in order to keep your audience engaged. If you have multiple people posting through your company’s social media accounts, your audience should not be able to distinguish between their voices. Your company should have its own unique online vernacular, to which employees should align. When posting to social media, it is perfectly acceptable to post a wide variety of content (polls, pictures, promotions, shares, etc.). However, the nature of this content should remain the same. Going along with the tone of voice, the type of content you produce should be directed toward your target audience, and consistently attract them. In a time of a media fragmentation, it is important to be aware of where you are posting. If you post one promotion on Facebook, and then put it on Twitter the following week, consumers will experience great difficulty trying to keep up.
As a company, the core values you exhibit should always remain consistent. These values give your consumers a sense of trust and reliability. Conversely, if they frequently change, consumers will feel uneasy and apprehensive to trust your company. It is hard to trust a politician who keeps changing their policies, and the same is true for businesses. Consistency in what you represent is crucial in maintaining a loyal audience.
With the goal of brand recognition, the most important thing to remember is consistency. A consistent brand is more likely to be imprinted into consumers’ minds and more likely to join their evoked set. As a company, it is important to evolve, but without sacrificing the equity that you’ve worked to build.