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What is digital branding and why is it important?
Welcome to 2023, where most people spend more time scrolling than they look up at the world – So, it’s no surprise that a greater number of businesses are moving towards a dominant online marketing model rather than a ‘real world’ strategy.
With today’s society losing interest in billboards and choosing ad-free TV and streaming, how are businesses supposed to get their word out there? One of the answers is… Becoming digital first!
In particular, digital branding. What is this you ask? To put it simply, this method of branding makes your company as digital-friendly as possible. It’s more important, now than ever, that brands look aesthetically simpler by stripping back the visual elements to basics – providing a clear and direct message whilst still promoting a strong brand identity. What’s more, it also ensures assets are suited to new and existing digital platforms, e.g. to look visually appealing on an app icon.
The shift to digital first branding
Back in 2020, the digital marketing industry was estimated to be worth a whopping USD$350 billion and is suggested to reach around USD$786 billion by the year 2026! At this time in 2020, the world was jolted online during the pandemic and humanity realised how much we rely on our electronic devices – for everything from ordering food to accessing workout videos from home.
When the internet kicked off ‘creatively’ in the 1990s logos wouldn’t fit screens, colours were off balance, the font options were minimal, and pages were way too wordy – But people were still so excited about the internet phenomenon and didn’t know how enhanced it could look 20 years later.
How did the digital era evolve? With consumers wanting to access a business instantly online, reputation management and customer experience were (and still are) one of the driving factors towards the digital branding shift.
Think about it – if you come across a new company online that you want to purchase from do you check out their reviews, website quality, engagement, and content? These considerations highlight whether the brand looks reliable and worth spending money on. Hence, being digital first ensures you don’t miss out on leads!
Digital branding from iconic companies
Even the most well-known businesses in the world have taken major steps towards streamlined digital branding!
Here are three of our favourite examples of digital rebranding from household names:
Logo is a registered trademark of Dunkin’
When Dunkin’ Donuts opened in 1948, the brand was built around its mission to bring the freshest doughnuts and coffee quicker than its competitors in Massachusetts, US. Fast forward to 2019, Dunkin’ has taken the world by storm and branched out to a variety of food and beverage options.
Over the 70 years, Dunkin Donuts had become such a common name (and phrase) that they were ready to remove the word ‘Donuts’ altogether – in its demise, the famous pink apostrophe appeared! This successful rebrand made it not only easier for merchandise and packaging, but also majorly impactful for its digital presence to be re-sized smaller on icons, websites, and more.
Logo is a registered trademark of Co-operative Group Limited
Since 1844, The Co-operative has been a household staple, offering everything from the weekly food shop to insurance packages. Shockingly, in 2010 the business almost saw its downfall but after management re-structuring, The Co-operative powered on.
To partner with the restructure, the company also made the smart move for a digital rebrand. Since most people referred to the company as the shortened ‘Co-op’ anyway, it completely made sense! The colour change not only makes it more digital-friendly, but the lighter blue also looks more relaxed and commercial.
Logo is a registered trademark of Starbucks
Starbucks – So recognisable it doesn’t need to include its name in the logo anymore! As online icons decreased in size, so did logos, which meant the text and famous siren lost their impact. The rebrand meant the logo could be replicated and resized easily online – plus, the removal of ‘coffee’ represented the company’s extended menus.
Notice the colour change to all green? This smart tweak was done cleverly to represent Starbucks’ environmentally friendly goals!
Future Trends in digital branding
- Virtual and augmented reality: With videos and animation becoming more sought-after than the still image, could it be that businesses switch to moving logos and branding? Giving the consumer an interactive, digital experience.
- Brands will have to make their online presence compatible with voice and visual search, as more technology users rely on tools like Alexa and Siri.
- Meta will be linked to pretty much everything digital-related and take over the online world.
- VR Avatars will represent businesses online rather than human customer service.
How to stay ahead of the rapidly evolving digital landscape
- Make sure your content is branded to create a long-term impact
- Invest in a strong SEO strategy
- Create unique video marketing
- Design personalised experiences for your customers and clients
- Be transparent and authentic
What are your thoughts on digital branding? We’d love to hear!
If you’re ready to take your branding and marketing to the next level, our Fenti experts are on hand to create a digital plan…