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Designing Brand Identity: An Essential Guide for the Whole Branding Team 3rd Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 57 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0470401422
ISBN-10: 0470401427
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Product Description

Who are you?

Who needs to know?

Why should they care?

How will they find out?

In a densely crowded marketplace, corporations, organizations, and even individuals look for ways to differentiate themselves. That is the job of branding.

Whether your goal is to express a new brand or to revitalize an existing one, here is a proven, universal five-phase process for creating and implementing effective brand identity. From research and analysis through brand strategy, design development through application design, and identity standards through launch and governance, Designing Brand Identity is an essential reference for the entire process.

Enriched by new case studies showcasing successful world-class brands from Herman Miller and General Electric to the Obama '08 election campaign, this Third Edition offers new insights into emerging trends such as sustainability and social networks.

Alina Wheeler applies her strategic imagination and process management skills to revitalize brands for Fortune 100 companies, entrepreneurial ventures, and nonprofits.

Twelve Traits of the Best Brand Identity Firms

The choice for any client can be daunting. More than ever, there is a panoply of highly capable firms that specialize in brand identity. Which ones should companies trust to revitalize their brand? Whether the firms are global brand consultancies, multidisciplinary design offices, design boutiques, or specialists in areas such as packaging or interactivity, these core competencies hold true.

1. Strategic imagination. An ability to understand and align business goals with creative strategy and expression is critical.

2. Process focus. A disciplined process is used to foster collaboration, build trust, and ensure responsible decision-making and results.

3. Design excellence. Reducing a complex, meaningful idea to its visual essence requires skill, patience, and unending discipline, whether the endpoint is a symbol, a look and feel, or an integrated brand identity system.

4. Irrefutable logic. Creating a new system or brand architecture requires an ability to communicate a compelling case for change to any decision-maker, from the CEO to the director of marketing to a division head.

5. Alchemy. An ability to synthesize vast amounts of information and reduce it to a big idea. Also, an ability to cut through the clutter and see the “gold” in a marketing audit.

6. Empathy and insight. An ability to be collaborative and understand the perspectives of all stakeholders, to suspend judgment and transcend politics.

7. Flexibility and humor. An ability to keep an eye on the big picture despite constraints and challenges. A sense of humor always helps.

8. Mindfulness and curiosity. An awareness of what is going on in the wider world and insight into best practices and the branding landscape.

9. Tenacity. Boundless energy and the perseverance of a marathon runner are required to develop and refine key messages, new names, taglines, and branding guidelines.

10. Organization. Phase by phase, email by email, presentation by presentation, file by file, tracking and documentation are key.

11. Focus. First and foremost, the process must stay focused on the customer and their experience.

12. Passion. Passion fuels excellence and inspires brand engagement.

Review

"Returning with a third edition is the branding bible that is widely regarded as the absolute best, most comprehensive, most successful, and most effective book to use as a reference when creating a brand and brand identity, Designing Brand Identity. Very thorough and to the point, Wheeler's guide takes one through the process of developing, implementing, disseminating, and maintaining a brand identity for a company, organization, or group and give them an edge in the marketplace." (San Francisco Book Review, January 25, 2010)

"We will be reading the book together as a company, and you should stoop and buy one now." (matchstic.com, August 25, 2009)

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 3 edition (August 31, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470401427
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470401422
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 0.9 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #453,185 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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By Marty Neumeier on September 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Writers have The Elements of Style. Managers have The Effective Executive. Chairpeople have Robert's Rules of Order. And now brand-builders have Designing Brand Identity. If you have (or would like to have) responsibility for managing, measuring, critiquing, or designing a brand, you've found your bible. And if you already own the first or second edition, you'll want to upgrade to the third. What I find most remarkable is that, aside from the thorough and relevant content, the design of the book is everything you'd expect from a top brand designer--and so seldom get. A classic.
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Format: Hardcover
This book saved me hours of time. It lays out a step-by-step process that would've taken a lot more time figuring out on my own if I didn't have this as a resource. If you're trying to convince people in your company to put more resources into branding, this book gives you what you need to make a strong case.

I found the format easy to use because it integrates instruction, example, text, pictures, and charts. Case study section is more text intensive than the others but still manageable. Has the stuff you need to get the job done -- starts with the big picture and goes down through the executional details.
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Format: Hardcover
What I love most? Designing Brand Identity is smart. I know I can pick it up anytime, open it anywhere and I'll be inspired. Principle based with miles of details. I'm a lefty and a righty... analytical and creative... I'm blown away by the value packed between the green pages. Dynamic processes, clean intelligent layout and visuals. Thank you!!!! Your work will help me in everything I do as a front-line makeover specialist.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Although I have extensive experience in trademark and intellectual property law, I lack a formal education in branding and its language; I turned to this book to fill in the gaps and help me understand how to lead a branding and visual identity campaign.

As stated, this book is very close to outstanding, but not necessarily outstanding. At 4/5 stars, I clearly very highly recommend it. However, my criticism stems from the book's failure to clearly define its terms. I understand that branding is, largely by definition, a more artful business tool, but there is a whole branding lexicon that is not well explained in the book. As you work your way through the book, you'll encounter repeated uses of the word, so you come to build your own definition, but I would have found it useful if terms would have been clearly defined at the outset, rather than mush-ily and circularly defined.

Despite this limitation, the book does a wonderful job of demonstrating the numerous layers of brand identity, and the processes associated with leading a branding campaign, be it key messages, visual identity or name. Wonderfully laid out steps with good examples. Keep in mind, however, this is more of a survey book, not necessarily a textbook intended to be comprehensive in itself. So while it brilliantly lays out the processes, you'll need to use other resources to fill out any gaps you might have.

Additionally, perhaps as you'd expect from a leading branding book, this book is beautifully laid out and shows a great appreciation for information design. Its a visual feast for the eyes that you'll enjoy perusing.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
First of all: this book has the greatest page layout i have ever seen! It's a pleasure to read. Every comment on the side of the page makes you have the A-ha moment. Every diagram summarizes just the strictly necessary without skipping on details. It's very visual, structured, yet so creative and textbook-ish like. The perfect balance between core fundamentals and illustrative examples. I could not stop reading it. Loving it more and more. Every time I read it there is something new.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an amazing book. Alina had the ability to gather some great cases to illustrate the rich masterfully methodology presented in the book. As a professor of branding in Brazil, I believe this book is a great reference for professionals and students of branding in the world, for dealing with the subject in a simple and fascinating way.
Congratulations Alina! You did a wonderful job.
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I really liked the way the book is laid out, not cluttered with lots of graphic examples and side notes. The downside of the book is that, although it provides some great examples, notes and guidelines, it doesn't go into very much detail on any given part of the brand design process, even leaving out key definitions to parts that aren't self explanatory. Despite the fact that it doesn't provide this detail, it is laid out in a way that will give you ideas or reminders as you go about designing your brand identity. If anything it's a nice book to look at.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great book. Clear, well illustrated, informative, well laid out, and no filler. After an intro to marketing type course, this book will give you the framework for thinking about and implementing a brand marketing strategy. I emphasize framework. This is not a how-to-do book, but more of a how to think about your marketing as it relates to branding. Strongly recommended, and a great price for such a high quality offering.
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