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What is a Brand?

The term “brand” gets thrown around pretty loosely. The first thing most people think of when they hear the term “brand” is a logo. Now. As a graphic designer myself, I would have to agree that this is a very important piece of the puzzle. After all, this is the very first impression people will have of your restaurant, before they even take their first bite!

However, friends, I am here to tell you that it goes deeper. A brand is a composite of all the things that define your restaurant as a whole. Your logo and other visual branding elements are just part of the big picture! Your brand is your restaurant’s DNA, personality, and what makes your restaurant unforgettable to your customers. A few other brand touch points could include your menus, your advertising content, customer interactions, signage, your food niche, interior finishes, and atmosphere. All of these pieces, if not consistent or strategically planned, could be casting an unprofessional light on your entire business.

First Steps to Defining Your Brand

Before you even begin to think about having a logo designed, you need to do some self-discovery and define your restaurant’s brand.  Some areas to dive into are your

♦ your vision

♦ who your dream customer is

♦ your values

♦ your voice

♦ and restaurant personality

Having these defined will help you navigate every decision you make in your business and how you want the world to relate to it. Download my free brand clarity workbook below to help you get started on this journey. It is filled with questions and prompts to help you sort all of this out.

Aligning Your Personality and Your Logo

Once you have your brand foundation defined, your next goal is to make sure everything your customers see, hear, touch and taste aligns with your brand. Let’s talk about how we can match your visual branding elements to your brand personality. Similar to how people often dress according to who they are as a person, your visual branding elements should reflect your restaurant’s personality.

I have created 2 very simple logotypes for the same restaurant name. They both have the exact same wording, but convey 2 different messages. Let’s say “Rocks & Ripples” is a fine dining restaurant and bar known for its gorgeous patio dining, overlooking a lake and mountains in the distance. Which of these options feels better suited?

Definitely option A, right? The elegant script, airy spacing, and light weight fonts all contribute to the upscale personality. People will assume just by seeing this design, they can expect to have an elegant experience.

 Without knowing any context, there is nothing wrong with Option B. It just doesn’t fit “Rocks & Ripples” personality. The heavy font, angled alignment, and distressed texture may suggest that customers could expect a more casual, lively environment and somewhere that you could meet your friends for drinks and get an amazing burger.

 Can you see how having a misaligned (or even poorly designed) logo can hurt your business? Your logo alone, can have the power to turn away your dream customer if it is not appealing to them. You won’t even get a chance to wow them with your delicious food! Great branding design that is consistent and aligned with your restaurant’s personality will breed loyalty and familiarity in your dream customers. They will recognize your logo, your branding color scheme, and your style out in the wild. In the visual world we live in today, it is VITAL to your business’s bottom line, that your graphics grab your dream customers’ attention.

 Now is the time to invest in a professional. Your logo and everything visual that represents your business, are the first impressions your customers will have of you. No more piecing together marketing materials, that don’t do your business justice. It’s time to know the best version of your restaurant that it can be. I encourage you to take some time to think through the questions in the workbook (download below) and dig deep into your business’s DNA. Your restaurant deserves to SHINE in its individual personality and become the unforgettable dining staple in your community!

 Exciting things are on the horizon for you, my friend!

Ready to Stand Out From the Crowd?