The term branding refers to the process of equipping the products and services with brand power, to create a line of demarcation between company’s product and other products in the market. In this context, the terms brand identity and brand image are quite commonly juxtaposed. However, they are different. While a brand identity is how the brand owner defines his brand, brand image determines how the ultimate consumer perceives the brand.
In other words, the brand identity can be the logo, slogan or tagline, style and tone whereas brand image can be the basic impression, belief of the existing and potential customer regarding the brand. The article presented to you explains the difference between brand identity and brand image.
Content: Brand Identity Vs Brand Image
|Basis for Comparison||Brand Identity||Brand Image|
|Meaning||Brand identity is nothing but the way the company wants the target audience to perceive the brand.||Brand image refers to the way that the customers actually perceive the brand.|
|Includes||Visible elements of a brand.||Both visual elements and brand associations.|
|Indicates||Firm's reality||Perception of consumers|
|Depends on||How the company presents itself?||What are the customers experiences with the brand?|
|Focuses on||Looking back||Looking ahead|
Definition of Brand Identity
Brand identity, as the name suggests, is the way company presents itself to the customers and wants it to be perceived by the folks. In other words, it is the company’s face, which reflects the values, personality and ideas of the company. It comprises of features, attributes, quality, performance, services and support facilities that it possesses.
Brand Identity is a result of the collective effort of the organisation and its management to create an eminent product with distinct characteristics. It determines the way organisation wants it to be recognized by the target audience in the market.
For this purpose, the branding and marketing strategies and techniques help a lot to the organization in communicating the identity to the folks. It entails brand vision, positioning, personality, relationships, etc. It is all about the intellectual and operational connections with the brand, to provide a familiarity and differentiation to the brand.
Definition of Brand Image
We define the term ‘brand image’ as the perception of the customers (existing and prospective) about the brand. It encompasses the collection of beliefs, ideas and impression held by the customers, formed from various sources, about the brand. In finer terms, it explains the way customer think of a brand and the feeling it portrays when the consumer hears its name.
Brand image is not a one-day affair, rather it is developed over time, either through promotional campaigns or direct customer interaction with the concerned brand. It is anything and everything that influences a customer’s perception of the brand.
The customers create a connection with the brand, as per their experiences and interaction with the products offered by that brand. On the basis of these connections, an image is developed which can be positive or negative depending on the current market position of the brand.
Key Differences Between Brand Identity and Brand Image
The difference between brand identity and brand image is discussed below in points:
- Brand identity is a total of all the brand components created by the company with the aim of depicting a correct image of the company in the eyes of the consumer. On the other hand, the brand image represents the complete impression about the product or brand in the mind of the consumer considering all the sources.
- While the creation of brand identity requires the active participation of the company, brand image is a passive thing, that is created by real experience by consuming it.
- Brand identity covers all the visible elements of the brand like its logo, name, colour, design symbol and so forth. As against, a brand image encompasses both visual elements such as its logo, tagline, colour, design and brand associations like quality, reliability etc.
- Brand identity represents firm’s reality, i.e. its vision, mission, core values and objectives, whereas brand image shows the perception of the consumer about the brand.
- Brand identity depends on how the company presents itself in front of its target constituencies? On the contrary, brand image is based on the customer’s interaction and experiences with the brand.
- Brand identity is all about looking back, with the aim of improving it. In contrast, brand image concentrates on looking forward to bettering the consumer experiences with the brand.
In a nutshell, brand identity is nothing but the way in which a brand portrays itself to the target audience. On the contrary, brand image is the way existing, and prospective customers perceive a particular brand and connect with it.