Designing Brand Identity: An Essential Guide for the Whole Branding Team, 4th Edition Fourth Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 375 ratings
ISBN-13: 978-1118099209
ISBN-10: 9781118099209
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Editorial Reviews Review

Ten Imperatives for Branding Success

Brands represent an organization's most valuable asset--influencing customers, prospects, investors, and employees. Why do some brand initiatives just expire midstream after an initial investment of capital and resources? Whether you are a consumer brand, a nonprofit, or a mid-size service business, here are some tips to increase the chances of positive outcomes for your initiative.

  1. Ensure that your leadership team endorses the brand initiative and process. There must be a strong mandate from the top. If the commitment to revitalize the brand is tepid, it will fizzle in the middle. Do you have a plan and a disciplined process that is easy to understand?
  2. Establish clear goals and an endpoint. Why are we doing this? How will things be different at the initiative's end? Will we have new guidelines to make it easier to communicate consistently about our brand to our customers and employees? Will we clearly articulate who we are and what we stand for? Will our website will work on mobile devices?
  3. Establish clear responsibilities. Acknowledge that your investment will require staff time, not just writing checks. It's a collaborative process. Identify an internal person to be the direct contact for the branding firm--a "make it happen" person with superior organization skills.
  4. Use a disciplined process with realistic benchmarks. Agree on what the brand stands for before any creative work is done. Use a tool like the brand brief to ensure that key decision makers agree on your brand's essence, its competitive advantage, your target market, and your value proposition.
  5. Stay customer centric. The best brand decisions can only be made with the customer's needs and experiences in mind. See the world through the eyes of your customers.
  6. Commit to a small decision group at the beginning of the process. Never bring in decision-makers in the middle of the process. Key decisions makers must be present throughout the process and at all key decision points.
  7. Determine your readiness to make a commitment? Is your company ready to invest the time, capital, and human resources to revitalize your brand? Readiness is a critical success factor.
  8. Determine how you will measure success. Consider benefits like employee engagement, and a more efficient, cost-effective marketing toolbox. Communicate that it's everyone's job to protect and grow the brand asset.
  9. Launch internally first, then externally to key stakeholders. Remember to communicate why you made these changes and what they mean. Thoughtfully consider your list of stakeholders as you plan your launch. Make sure that all of your vendors have access to the new guidelines.
  10. Demonstrate—don't declare—why customers should choose you over others. Seize every opportunity to communicate your value, and to radically differentiate your brand from others. Identify touchpoints where your can build trust, attract new customers, create buzz, and inspire customer loyalty.


"The fourth edition of "Designing Brand Identity" is a truly comprehensive resource of definitions, explanations, insights, and examples of what it means to do outstanding brand identity work. Alina's new book is a must-have for anyone that is interested in brand identity development." (, 3/5/13)

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ 1118099206
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ John Wiley and Sons; Fourth Edition (November 6, 2012)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 326 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 9781118099209
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1118099209
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 2.96 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 8.5 x 0.9 x 10.8 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 375 ratings

About the author

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Alina Wheeler engages enterprises in a dynamic process to build their brands and embrace best practices. Wheeler inspires the whole branding team to seize every opportunity to design compelling customer experiences at every touchpoint. Designing Brand Identity, now in its fifth edition, is the first book to deconstruct the branding process into a universal, five-phase methodology. Her signature mantra is "Who are you? Who needs to know? Why should they care? How will they find out?" Designing Brand Identity demystifies branding and gives practitioners a roadmap to create sustainable and successful brands. It is published in 7 languages, and is used by clients and their branding and design firms to educate their staffs.

Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
375 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on June 21, 2017
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Top reviews from other countries

N. Richardson
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding resource for branding professionals
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 3, 2013
31 people found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars Best book on designing (and ultimately developing) a brand - recommend for comms/marketing practitioners
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 24, 2013
19 people found this helpful
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Mr H.
3.0 out of 5 stars not amazing.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 23, 2016
5.0 out of 5 stars buy it!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 8, 2016
C. Butt
5.0 out of 5 stars Strongly reccomend
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 22, 2014