Succeeding in business has always been a challenge, but in today’s saturated market, visual branding is no longer a mere asset: it’s a necessity. With businesses vying for attention in the physical world and online, it’s vital to find innovative ways to stand out, captivate new audiences, establish brand loyalty, and leave a lasting impression.
Visual branding through custom art may have once been considered a luxury available only to the largest and most affluent companies, but in an increasingly competitive market, it’s become an important part of every business’s overall strategy. The good news? Between professional art consultants and increasingly affordable printing technologies, finding great art for your business has never been easier.
Regardless of whether your commercial space is a hotel, corporate office, residence, or retail store, visual branding is the key to unlocking creativity, uniqueness, and exclusivity. Are you interested in fostering a warm and inviting atmosphere, creating a stunning visual identity, and cultivating a sense of community amongst employees and customers? Visual branding is your secret weapon to coming out on top. Read on to learn more about the power of art and how it can take your business to the next level.
The ‘why’ behind visual branding
You already understand that a strong visual brand is a top way to distinguish yourself from the competition, but did you know that its impact has even greater implications? Smart businesses leaders understand that visual branding is:
- An opportunity to create a memorable experience. With the convenience of online shopping further saturating the marketplace, brick and mortar storefronts need to do more to provide their customers with an immersive and distinctive experience.
- A unique visual experience that will engage customers and employees and stimulate their senses. A thoughtfully curated visual brand has the power to connect on a subconscious level, encouraging customers to linger and buy while fostering a better environment for employees—and positively affecting their productivity and loyalty to your company.
- A way to establish emotional connections. Visual branding encourages exploration and contemplation, which endears customers to your brand and invites them to linger.
- A more robust way to reflect brand identity: Every business has a unique mission, vision, and values. But without effective communication, your brand won’t stand out and be successful in the marketplace.
- An unrivaled way to tell your brand’s story. Especially in this modern day and age, you need more than words to effectively tell a story. In fact, the most successful brands consistently rely on eye-catching art to communicate and connect on a deeper, subconscious level. The bottom line? When you select work and/or artists who align with your company’s values, you establish a cohesive narrative that keeps customers coming back time and time again.
- An inspired way to spark creativity and innovation. When it comes to creating inspiring workplaces that stimulate the imagination and boost productivity, nothing compares to visual branding. In fact, studies show that employees often cite art as playing a major role in their workplace success. Curious about how to support the people that help you succeed? Investing in art is crucial.
- A way to support local artists and the community at large. It’s actually more than just a nice thing to do: when businesses collaborate with artists, they actively contribute to the cultural fabric of the community. And that translates to authenticity and establishing a legacy.
Visual branding attracts the right customers to your business and keeps them coming back.
How art impacts visual branding
It doesn’t matter whether or not you have a deep appreciation for the arts: the reality is that aesthetics have a huge impact on all of us, influencing how we interact with our environment and swaying the decisions we make. And no matter what your business, be it a Fortune 500 company or a third-generation general store, investing in visual branding is a powerful way to establish emotional connections that make your space worth revisiting.
Think about what your company stands for and the image you want to project. Do you want to be associated with comfort and familiarity? Or are you a high-end destination that needs to project a sense of luxury and class? Smart visual branding has the power to transform your services and goods into a covetable experience, something that customers prioritize—and something that dictates where they’ll spend their money.
Enhance your brand’s aesthetics
Take a moment to visualize some of your favorite companies. What attracts you to them? Surely some visuals immediately spring to mind. Do they feel timeless and chic, or perhaps buzzy and trendy? So much of how you perceive these brands was established through visual branding, and these associations required thoughtful consideration and curation.
Top companies think about more than simply what they bring to the table: they think about how to be of service, and that means understanding what the customer wants and how you can satisfy that need in your own unique way. Curating a distinct visual brand is an extension of this service and allows you to connect with your customers in a more profound way. Would someone that regularly shops at Lulu Lemon pick up a pair of yoga pants at a discount store? There’s a good chance that, unless something profound has changed, the answer is probably no. And we promise you that, 9 times out of 10, it’s not because of a difference in quality: it’s because of visual branding and the desirability that’s generated.
Strong visual branding means consistency
A business owner’s number one priority is to build credibility with customers, and consistency through visual branding is a critical part of that. It allows people to identify your brand regardless of whether they notice your store on the street or come across your products on social media. If your brand is lacking in uniformity, you’re missing multiple opportunities to connect with your customers—there’s a good chance that they’re unaware that they’re looking at the same product, person or service, which means you’re starting from scratch.
So when you’re considering your visual brand, what are some ways to make it memorable?
- Create a logo. An eye-catching logo is a powerhouse when it comes to visual branding. Just think of some of your favorite products: surely you can picture their logo, as well. Just be sure that you’re smart about its application: consistency is key, and details like placement, layout, and even color are important.
- Select a great font. The art that you select for your visual brand is just one piece of the puzzle: the font that accompanies your marketing materials and packaging might be just as important. It can help define your business’s personality, reflect the tone of your brand, and connect with the appropriate audience.
- Think about your color palette. Colors aren’t just beautiful: they’re psychologically powerful. With the power to influence moods and communicate symbolically, selecting primary (the hues found in the main logo) and secondary (used for background and design elements) palettes is an important way to reinforce your visual branding.
- Connect the dots. With very few exceptions, strong visual branding will have a common thread that unites all of the individual elements. Even when selecting artwork from different mediums, like photographs and paintings, make sure that the art is in dialogue. It might be a color palette, a specific theme, or even something more esoteric like “a sense of movement”.
- Keep it up. Once you’ve established how you want your visual brand to resonate, keep those elements consistent, regardless of whether they’re online or in-store.
Consistency in your visual branding is key.
Measure the impact of visual branding
Is curating art and establishing a visual brand really worth it? The answer is almost always yes, but it can offer business owners a sense of confidence and comfort to be able to quantify how. Measuring the impact of art on your visual branding can offer important insights about what’s working and what’s not, and better yet, it’s a unique opportunity to connect directly with your customers. Are you in conversations with a local artist and trying to select 3 fresh works for your store? Post a selection on your social media channels and ask people to chime in.
You can even ask customers to fill out brand perception surveys, making sure that questions about your visual branding are also represented. What does your logo make them feel? Why are they interested in feeling a connection with your company? Engagement metrics and market positioning are, of course, also qualifiable ways to understand if your visual branding strategy is working. Are you the top dog? Then congratulations, that’s amazing—now you just have to think about how you’ll maintain that position.
From establishing a great idea to investing in superior products and services, you’ve worked hard to create a distinctive business. And visual branding—alongside great art—are your secret weapon to differentiating yourself and creating profound, genuine relationships with your loyal customers. Do you want someone to notice that it’s your store from down the street? Or do you hope that they’ll pause and back up when they doom scroll, if only because they recognized that the post was yours and want to check out your content? Consistent, superior visual branding is the key to success—you just need to get started.