What is a brand? Is that a logo? Is my identity my brand? There are lots of different opinions about this. You may have seen people use identity, brand, and logo interchangeably (we’re not here to judge, but we don’t agree with that). From our experience, companies can get lost in the combination of these three terms.

Brand identity. Brand logo. Brand identity design. Brand image.

Shoot…we’re confused.

Today we want to bring clarity to these terms because we believe that who you are is the most foundational question in marketing. Nothing else will matter if that question isn’t answered first. We can’t forget who we are and what makes us different. Once, we discover that, then we can set goals and market.

Let’s dive into some definitions first and then we’ll go into our brand and offer you some application. Sound good?

What is a brand?

A brand is the public’s perception of a company. The public communicates, engages, or disengages based on that perception. A few weeks ago we talked about branding and asked you –  what are you known for? The answer to that question is your brand.

What is identity?

Identity is who you are, what you do, and how you do it. Successful marketing happens when your identity and your brand align.

What is a logo?

Logo and brand unfortunately get grouped together a lot. When that happens, it diminishes the power a of brand. Your logo is only a part of your brand. It communicates your brand through a visual piece, which is often demonstrated in a symbol or icon. Think about your personal name (Jill, Mike, Susan, Bob). Your name identifies you, and for many people, the meaning of a name is very significant. Just as your name is not your full identity, a logo is not a brand.

“A brand used to be something else. It used to be a logo or a design or a wrapper. Today, that’s a shadow of the brand, something that might mark the brand’s existence.” – Seth Godin, define: Brand, Seth’s Blog

Are you lost in the shadow of your brand? You are more than your logo. Discover who you are and what makes you different. Then live out your identity and watch your brand develop over time.

Woah. That was a lot. Are you still tracking? Hang in there. Here’s an example:

Waypoint Brand:

A marketing agency that inspires fun and creativity in marketing and advertising.

Waypoint Identity:

Bringing a fun and new creative marketing direction to our clients.

Lost in the shadow of your brand

Is it an arrow or a tree?

Yes…An arrow signifying our passion for a new direction. A tree showing our love for the outdoors. AND a mouse cursor because we are a marketing agency.

Make sense? Now you try it!


Did you try it? You probably didn’t because you’re just trying to finish this article. That’s okay. We still appreciate you. BUT we want you to keep this as a tool that you can use later.

You may have noticed that we didn’t talk about voice. We’ll dive into that topic another time.

Here are some more questions to think about before you click that back arrow or red x.

  • Describe what you do in one or two sentences.
  • Name 1 or 2 companies in your industry that inspire you.
  • What makes you different than the competition?
  • Who is currently interested in your brand?
  • How are you perceived by the public?
  • What’s the meaning or background behind your logo?
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