05.02.2017 / How to use brand identity to create a brand image?

What is Brand Identity?

Alina Wheeler defines that brand identity is tangible and appeals to the senses. You can see it, touch it, hold it, hear it, watch it move. Brand identity fuels recognition, amplifies differentiation, and makes big ideas and meaning accessible. Brand identity takes disparate elements and unifies them into whole systems in her book “Designing Brand Indentity: An Essential Guide for th Whole Branding Team.”  

Graphic Designer, Andrew Sabatier cretated the Anatomy of Brand Identity:



What is a Brand Image?

According to “In Search of Brand Image: a Foundation Analysis,” written by Dawn Dobni, University of Houston, a definiton of a brand image was not stable over 35 years.

Table 1 shows all definitions of a brand image from the last three decades. This collection was grouped by focuses. Resources of this table are press, journals, and books.

A brand image is the consumer’s understanding and evaluation of the product. (Friedman and Lessig 1987).


What are the Differences Between Brand Identity and a Brand Image?


What is the Relationship between Brand Identity and a Brand Image?

The synergy of brand identity and a brand image creates brand strategy. Brand strategy makes sure that customers correspond to brand identity.



How does a Brand Image Affect Sales?

It is a well-known fact that customers compare self-image with a product image. If there is a match, most luckily, a person will buy a product. This is the reason why companies do their best in order to create a product for a very narrow market segment and create a connection between a brand image and personal image.

Figure 1 describes this model.

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Brand Identity Prism:

Professor Jean-Noel Kapferer represents brand identity as six prism:


  1. Physics – it is a combination of physical aspects that a customer feels, when comapny’s brand is mentioned. This is a basis of the brand.
  2. Relationship – it identifies the way of relationship the company stands for.
  3. Reflexion – it creates image of a typical comapny’s user.
  4. Personality – it is a charecter of the brand. It can be differentiated with a writing style, a brand ambassador, colours, and design.
  5. Culture – values of the brand.
  6. Self-image – it is a reflection of a target group. Brand gives an oppotunity to people to associate themselves with lifestyle that they want.


Brand Identity Models:


David A. Aaker, a professor of marketing in University of California, has invented a brand identity planning model. It aims to help companies in brand identity process. David A. Aaker advises to consider a brand as a product, a person, an organization, and a symbol. It makes strategists to see a brand from different perspectives.



How to utilize visual elements to support brand identity?

Key visual elements for supporting brand identity are:

  • Memorable logo
  • Attractive colours
  • Supporting graphics
  • Typography

Non-visual elements:

  • Clear purpose and positoning. Why does company exist? What are competetive advantage and target market?
  • Market research. It helps to understand business environment and estimate chanses of winning the competion.
  • Likable brand personality. It is essential for a company to have an idea of how brand will look like, if it is a person.





  1. The Seven Key Element of Brand Identity Design by Jarom McDonald.
  2. Aakers Brand Indetity Model by Ali Hadi.
  3. 6 Reasons Your Brand Needs a Brand Identity Model by David Aaker.
  4. The Influence of Brand Image on Sales by Malikul Adil.
  5. What is the Difference between Marketing, Sales, and Branding? By Sean Duffy.
  6. In Search of Brand Image: a Foundation Analysis by Dawn Dobni.
  7. Brand Identity Designer by Andrew Sabatier.
  8. Kapferer Brand Indetity Prism by Marmara University.
  9. Designing Brand Indentity: An Essential Guide for th Whole Branding Team by Alina Wheeler.
  10. Branding by Matti Helelä