The brand as a communication tool

The brand as a communication tool

When we speak of brand identity, we are referring to the set of distinctive components of a brand. If we want to express it in technical terms, we can say that by brand identity we mean the totality of codes that, consistent with strategic objectives, have the task of making the issuer recognizable and building a different memory.

What does it mean?

It means that the identity of a company, in addition to considering values, resources and people, is also given by a visual apparatus that includes the conception and realization of seven fundamental elements useful for the composition of what in communication is called a brand. These seven elements are:

  1. Concept
  2. Name
  3. Payoff
  4. Logotype
  5. Colours 
  6. Symbol
  7. Typeface

While each of these seven elements has its own evocative autonomy, they must be considered in a coherent and complementary manner, one in relation to the other.Because we must remember that the objective of creating a brand is to define a unique and distinctive identity in relation to the rest of the market. And, in order to develop a brand that is truly unique, we must follow a few simple guidelines.The brand, in fact, is an integral part of a company's brand identity, that is, of the marketing concept that requires a company's identity to be solid and clear, so that the target audience can easily recognise it and align it with the brand image, that is, what the consumer recognises of the brand.

Types of trademarks:
  • Monogram: Some examples? IBM, MTV, BBC. The monogram mark is nothing more than a particular typographical assemblage of one or more initial letters of one or more names.
  • Word mark: Coca-cola, Kenwood, Braun. This is a trademark based on a logotype, i.e. only on a particular spelling of the name, without the addition of figurative elements. The lettering is essential to better characterize this type of trademark, because it is the lettering that supports the logotype in the visual characterisation of the trade mark, favoring its memorability.
  • Figurative logotype: Barilla, Chicco, Samsung. It is one of the possible evolutions of the word mark, which is inscribed in a geometric shape.
  • Figurative mark: Puma, Eni, Apple. Logotype + stylised and recognisable graphic symbol give rise to the figurative mark. In this case, it is the pictogram that makes the difference: the stylised symbol explicitly represents a universally recognisable subject, e.g. the Puma brand has registered the pictogram of the puma; Apple, on the other hand, the pictogram of the apple.
  • Abstract mark: Mercedes-Benz and Nike. The abstract trade mark consists of the integration of a logotype and an abstract symbol (not referable to any recognised object). They are therefore fictional symbols.
  • Illustrated trademark: Mulino Bianco, Hermès, MPS. The illustrated trademark consists of the use of a logotype combined with a complex figurative element, such as an illustration or photograph. Typically allegorical, it is widely used to identify consumer products, in order to attribute through the packaging - where the mark is applied - a greater communicational appeal.

The brand is basically a corporate communication tool

Why? Because a brand has an infinite number of applications in corporate communication. From letterhead to business card. From a newspaper to a key ring. From a pen to a six-meter poster. It must render well in each of these cases. That is why a brand must be immediate and easy to understand. A well-crafted brand must not be confusing or smoky and must not blend in with other brands. The brand must be simple. Both graphically and textually. Simple in the use of shapes and colors, so that it is recognisable even if reproduced on very small surfaces. It must have a good rendering when reproduced three-dimensionally, as can happen in the production of gadgets or decorative elements for shops, fairs, etc.

The registration of a trademark (legal aspects)

According to Article 7 of the Industrial Property Code, all signs that can be represented graphically, words, including personal names, but also drawings, letters, numbers and even sounds in the form of musical notes written on a staff can be registered as trademarks. The shape of the product itself can be registered as a trademark as long as it has its own distinctive character in the eyes of the consumer. Chromatic combinations and shades can also be registered and be part of a distinctive trademark, but not the colors themselves, of course, as they cannot be adopted by a single company for a single trademark, but the color tones, as well as their shades and the various combinations, can also be registered and be part of the distinctive trademark.  Although Article 7 does not explicitly mention it, advertising slogans may also constitute a trademark, e.g. Mondo Convenienza has registered its slogan 'Our strength is the price' as a trademark, which has even been registered as a piece of music.

A trademark is subject to control by the Ministry of Economic Development, which is why after its conception and realization your trademark will (sooner or later) have to be registered. You can take care of the registration paperwork yourself or rely on the communication agency that developed your trademark. We at Tonidigrigio always offer this service to our customers and Sara usually takes care of it. To learn more about this topic we leave you her video, you can find it here!


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