What is a visual identity system—and do we need one?

To be successful, it’s vital that people know that your company or organization exists, and will and remember it’s name and core business at the right time. An effective way of achieving this is to develop a visual identity system.

A corporate visual identity system serves as the focal point of a communication design system—it provides visibility and “recognizability”. It’s a way to represent the brand through components such as names, logos, typefaces and colours, and is often the only way that a large portion of the public will identify your organization and its offerings.

The goals of many visual identity systems are to:

  • communicate more powerfully
  • look cohesive throughout all departments and/or sub-brands
  • appear contemporary and relevant
  • save time and resources by streamlining the design process of communication materials
  • bring focus and understanding to the organization’s offerings

A new visual identity system could establish a fresh and new visual personality, reflecting how you would like to best present yourself to your community. The stronger and more credible your visual identity, the less susceptible your organization is to being defined and undermined by outside influences.

A strong visual identity system can subconsciously shape peoples’ feelings about your organization. From the moment people interact with it, their feelings are subconsciously reinforced. Often, these feelings last a lifetime.

Visual identity systems include such elements as:

  • a logo or word mark
  • logo lockups (variations on placement and usage)
  • corporate colour palettes
  • consistent typefaces
  • image styles and graphic elements

The development process begins by defining a vision of what you want your identity to represent and then choose the right elements to build that brand with. A system conveys your organization’s personality and values—and it extends into every marketing medium and tactic.

Progressive organizations capture this personality and visual direction in a Guidelines Document, which describes an identity system in depth and outlines rules so an image is always presented in a consistent manner. All of these pieces jointly create the unified image which ensures that the first impression of your organization and its products or services, is always a good one.

Is it time to create a new visual identity system for your organization, or to update an existing one? Contact Bateman Design Group today for a no-obligation consultation. TELL US what you have in mind or give us a call at (705) 728-3569.





© 2015, Bateman Design Group. All rights reserved. This article may not be reproduced or distributed, in whole or in part, without prior written permission of Bateman Design Group.

Bateman Design Group is a boutique creative agency in Barrie offering graphic design, marketing strategy, website development services and custom content management systems since 2003. We are available to work independently or as a freelance part of your marketing team.




About Julie Bateman

Julie Bateman is a professional graphic designer and the founder of Bateman Design Group, a boutique creative agency in Barrie, Ontario. Julie has over 15 years of design and business experience, and has taught courses in Digital Photography, Design Fundamentals and Advertising at Georgian College. Samples of her work have been published in both ‘Basic Logos’ by Index Books, and ‘Graphically Speaking: A Visual Lexicon for Achieving Better Designer-Client Communication’ by Lisa Buchanan. Julie also recently earned her Google Analytics Platform Principles certificate from Google.
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