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The Difference Between Branding, Brand Identity, and a Logo

Margaret Hyde Photography Business Card Design

What is branding? Well, it’s a logo, right? Then what about brand identity? Most of us think those three things are interchangeable, but in reality, each term is its own distinct concept that, when done well, work together to define a company and its values. Knowing the differences between these terms and how they’re related can help strengthen your understanding of your company, and ultimately, the success of your business.


Branding is the marketing practice of creating a name, symbol or design that identifies and differentiates a product from other products. Whereas brand identity is the visible elements of a brand that together identify and distinguish the brand in the consumer’s mind. Finally, a logo is the graphic symbol that represents a person, company or organization.


Branding tells the story of your company’s uniqueness. Your values. Your “why.” It’s a manifestation of your gut feeling about your company. “But isn’t my website my brand?” Well, kind of, yes. Think of your website as a vehicle to help promote information about what you want to communicate about your brand. “What about the logo?” Your logo, too, is branding. Your logo is the strategy of your brand. A symbolic representation of your brand, and it should be visually everywhere you want your brand to be.


Identity helps build your brand by expressing values visually. Values can be communicated with approved fonts, color palettes, and even layouts used in a visual output. How do you know when the brand identity works? When you can visibly recognize the brand without noticing the logo, that’s how. Like watching a commercial half way through, and already knowing the brand before even seeing the logo. Or seeing a new product somewhere and saying to yourself “oh, that is such and such’s new whatever” before scanning the company’s logo. That is brand identity, folks.


Logo Design (the visual symbol of the brand)
Stationery (business card, letterhead, envelope, etc.)
Marketing Collateral (website design, email blasts, posters, flyers, mailers, brochures, point of sale displays, etc.)
Products & Product Packaging
Signage (interior and exterior signs on display)
Literally any other visual used to represent your company


Logos, logos, logos. In the words of Fleetwood Mac, they “wanna be with you everywhere.” But what is a logo exactly? It’s the visual symbol that identifies a company. The goal of a logo is to be timeless (so that it won’t look old-fashioned in a couple of years). You want it to be recognizable (people should be able to remember it even at a quick glance). Lastly, you want it to be flexible (it should be identifiable whether viewed as a tiny icon on a smartphone screen, oversized on a giant billboard, and everything in between).


The relationship between customers and your business is your brand. Brand identity is the tangible composition of the brand. And the logo is simply the symbolic representation of the company. It all boils down to how you want to promote your brand and what you want your audience to feel when you do. That, my friends, sums it up. If you’re interested in creating a show-stopping brand or revamping your existing one, call 323-848-4465 or send us a message online and let’s get to work!

About the Author of This Post

Christopher Dalbey is an actor and screenwriter who likes to hear the funny side of the story first. You can follow his odd-yssey on Instagram, and see full clips of his work on


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