A corporate identity or corporate picture is the way in which a business, company or organization presents itself to the general public. The corporate identity usually consists of visual cues including signage, visual design, branding, public relations and so forth. A corporate logo usually represents the brand of the company and helps consumers to associate the company with certain values, objectives and practices. For example, McDonald’s uses its iconic golden arches to attract customers, whereas GMC’s image as a staid automaker exudes dignity.
In essence, a corporate culture is a set of values and actions that a company takes to maintain its reputation and market share. These are communicated through the brand images, trademark names, slogans, public information, marketing strategies, and so on. In order to promote a positive image and create a positive marketplace perception, it is essential to engage in a long-term strategy that includes an integrated approach involving branding value, corporate identity, visual presentation and other corporate actions.
Visual corporate identity elements are those elements of a business card, letterhead, brochure, website, poster or any other printed medium that are visually designed. These visual corporate identity elements have a specific purpose in enhancing the overall look of the business. For example, the size and color of a business card back can have a tremendous impact on the perceived professionalism of the business. Similarly, the shape of a logo or the color of the corporate font can have a considerable impact on a company’s reputation. These visual corporate identity elements should be researched carefully in order to reap maximum benefits for your business.
The corporate font used for the text is critical because the font size has a direct impact on the perception of the message conveyed by the brand. An oversized corporate font may convey a strong, hard-sell message. Conversely, a tiny, faint typeface can communicate a softer, more professional tone. Research has shown that a company’s logo can significantly impact customer perceptions of the brand through the subconscious use of the logo on the business card, on the corporate signage and on the business cards. This is why your corporate identity must be consistent throughout all your marketing efforts.
Creating a long-term association with external stakeholders requires maintaining strong and supportive relationships with your key customers. Good corporate identity communication strategies include regular feedback and communication with your key customers to ensure that their needs and expectations are considered and that your brand value is enhanced. The value of your corporate communications strategy extends beyond the tangible benefits it provides to customers and external stakeholders. It also creates a valued and respected relationship with your employees, your suppliers and your other business partners.
The design of your corporate identity communicates important corporate messages to the external stakeholders. The design is therefore crucial to building a solid corporate image. Although the design process can be highly technical, it’s important for project managers to rely on a team of talented professionals to provide input into the design strategy early in the process. This allows them to make initial design decisions that focus on the overall look and feel of the final product. As the process goes on, the relationship between the company and external stakeholders will strengthen. This ultimately leads to a more productive and cost-effective overall marketing strategy.