Brand strategy before logo design

Why Brand Strategy is critical if you’re thinking about a logo (re)design

Brand strategy fills in the pieces of visual identity.

Everyone wants an impactful logo, even us. When we were launching Rise, we couldn’t wait to dig into the process of building an empowering and uplifting brand. What we did before we put ink to paper though was to develop our brand strategy, something a lot of small businesses skip to save money and time.

How does strategy work connect to brand creative design?

You might say that a brand strategy fills in the missing pieces of a visual identity. You want your outward appearance to reflect your vision and mission of making an impact on your ideal audience. You can’t fully paint that picture without all the pieces that a brand strategy fills in like values and attributes. These things translate to colour, depth, design, font, layout and all the things that you use to outwardly communicate.

What happens when you don’t develop a brand strategy first?

A designer is an artist, and usually has lots of creative ideas to offer. So the conversation goes something like this:

“Can you design a logo for our new gardening service?”

“Yes, I’d love to. What do you think you want it to look like?”


“Well, we like the colour green and we want it to be modern. We like the way the Apple logo looks.”

“Ok, great. I’ll get started on a green apple.”

You can see how the design process can deliver results that are not exactly what you want.

Is there an easy way to write a brand strategy?

All brand strategies usually have the same elements outlining your brand – the why, the what, the how and what makes you different (ie. we are a garden centre that grows special, organic apple trees). If you don’t have the budget for a deep dive into research with your stakeholders and the existing market, the simplest thing to do is answer those simple questions. These become the guiding star for everything you do in your business, not just the way the brand looks.

How does that help design?

From answering those simple questions, you build your brand persona which is voice, tone and story. These are all the things that help YOU write the design brief for your visual identity.

What’s a design brief?

Writing a clear design brief will get you the visual identity (logo and graphic environment) that you want. The design brief takes your brand strategy and research and maps it out for the designer in a format that they will understand. It gives them direction and clarity on exactly what you’re looking for – even if it IS a green apple.

Uplifting branding is what we do at Rise – from strategy to storytelling. Get in touch to find out more about how we can help you with brand strategy and visual identity design!

Get in touch with us here.

Photo credit: Ruvim Noga Photography, 2018.

By Sarah Kiriliuk

  • September 8, 2020
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