Branding is the act of actively shaping your brand. This can apply to consumer products or services advertised to the general public. The bottom line is this: all branding tells a story. Your brand informs the general public on how they should feel about you and your business. And individuals attach their assumptions to everything from your logo to your color scheme and aesthetics.
This is nothing new. We’ve all heard the hard truth that appearances matter, especially when it comes to first impressions. So why are dentists late to the marketing game, relying instead on traditional methods—such as word of mouth and proximity to patients—to bring in patients?
The importance of brand identity cannot be understated, especially for dentists. Here are three tips for establishing yours and helping your dental practice thrive.
1. Establish a Color Palette
Our first tip for creating a trusted, recognizable, and attractive brand identity is establishing a color palette. Elle & Co. shares this: “Color is one of the most noticeable, tangible components of a brand. It plays a large role in how a brand is perceived, it helps with recognizability and memorability, and it has the potential to attract the right kind of customers, clients, and blog readers.” This is especially true in crowded markets like dentistry. You want to stand out from the crowd while also selecting colors that evoke certain emotions. So how do you decide?
First, let’s explore the psychology of color. Color psychology is the study of how a color palette affects an individual’s perception and overall behavior. A recent study confirmed that most people make up their minds about a brand within 90 seconds of viewing it for the first time. Around 62–90 percent of this decision is based upon the colors alone. How you choose to use color also affects an individual’s ability to recognize your brand, reinforcing it by up to 80 percent. Let’s break down a handful of color choices.
Black signifies power, authority, and elegance. It is associated with intelligence but can also point towards sneaky, villainous behavior. It is a serious color that evokes strong emotions in an individual. Black is commonly used in more sophisticated brands and those seeking to establish credibility, simplicity, and an industrious or modern feel. It is a common choice for car brands, furniture companies, and manufacturers.
Yellow often correlates with feelings of positivity, happiness, and warmth. It is attention-grabbing but can also represent caution. Yellow might also be perceived as spontaneous, unstable, or even childish, especially to men or professionals. This is why yellow isn’t a common color choice amongst tech, medical, or business-related organizations. Adult clothing often steers clear of yellow, too, instead opting for more serious colors.
Red is the color of fire and blood and is often associated with anger, power, aggression, and danger. However, it can also be used to represent passion, love, intensity, and adventure. Red is an emotionally intense color, bright and attention-grabbing. Red can also stimulate an individual’s appetite and is a common choice amongst food brands, restaurants, and more. This makes it a common choice for fast food establishments, gas stations, and grocery stores.
Green is the number one color for environmental, sustainable, and eco-friendly products. It is associated with growth, life, and healing. Green is seen as a balanced color and is closely related to money and banking. It is worth noting that darker greens are more closely associated with wealth accumulation, while lighter greens signify harmony, inexperience, and freshness.
Blue can be perceived as trustworthy, loyal, and dependable. It is a common choice amongst financial institutions, sports teams, and social media for its association with stability. It is also commonly chosen for products and services that serve the environment. Blue is the preferred color for men, and they tend to gravitate towards products with blue logos more than any other color.
Purple is seen as a luxurious color. It is closely associated with elegance, nobility, and extravagance. It is also associated with mystery, fantasy, and medieval-related products, shows, or stories, making it a popular choice amongst creative individuals and storytellers. It is also said to evoke feelings of nostalgia, childhood, or simpler times.
It is important to select a color palette that embodies the emotions you want your consumer to feel. Start by creating a buyer persona, which includes identifying your target audience, age, location, interests, and needs. From there, you can break it down into subcategories and better understand your goals and how to reach them through your choice of color.
2. Create the Perfect Logo
The second tip on your path towards creating a stellar brand identity is to craft the perfect logo. A logo is the combination of text and imagery that identifies your brand, communicates your company name, and creates an easily recognizable symbol. It is helpful to think of your logo as your first impression. Therefore, you must take into consideration the look, feel, quality, and message that it portrays. A good logo establishes credibility and trustworthiness and is arguably the most important visual element for a consumer brand, good, or service. Here are some tips for creating your perfect logo.
Invest in Quality
In this day and age, almost anyone can create a basic logo or design using computer-based programs. However, it takes skill to make the right logo. When selecting a graphic designer, know what you want and be selective. Choose an individual who understands your brand, messaging, product, service, industry market, and purpose. Also, consider their example work, style, look, feel, and capabilities. Crafting the perfect logo can be a lengthy process, so you want to ensure you’ve chosen the right designer who is committed to your vision.
Consider the Typography
When we think about logos, we usually focus on the visual element. What we fail to realize is that typography matters just as much. Typography is the style and appearance of printed matter. In other words, it is your font choice. And individuals associate a word’s look with how it should make them feel. There is a subconscious, emotional connection to the font, and it is essential to select one that establishes trust while promoting interest and intrigue.
There are many styles from which to choose: serif, sans serif, cursive, script, bold, modern, and more. Consider your brand’s message and desired feel and how each font plays into that formula. Additionally, the importance of your font choice extends not only to your logo but your labels, website, and any other brand-related typography.
3. Stay on Brand
Finally, stay on brand. Once you establish a clear look and feel, you should be consistent. From labels to your website, consumer goods, and even employees, maintaining a cohesive brand contributes to a consistent, trustworthy good or service, builds your client base, and is a stepping stone to future success. You should be proud of your brand and include your logo and color scheme on everything you create. This not only allows for instant brand recognition but helps to set you apart from the competition, share information about your identity and company DNA, and drive referrals as well.
It is also essential to understand your audience and where they spend the majority of their free time. That will allow for better-targeted marketing techniques. According to Marketing Drive, “90% of people buy from brands they follow on social media.” It is essential to be present on any and all social platforms where your target audience lives and works in this modern world. Again, strive for consistency, as consumers will develop higher levels of engagement, gain more trust, and more easily recognize your brand.
In our modern world, establishing a clear brand identity is key to success. At the foundation, develop a clear brand identity, including a color palette, logo, and font choice. From there, consider your company values and desired direction as you grow and expand, hiring employees that share in your goals and represent your brand’s look and feel. These are the pillars to success in branding.