Brainstorm with Branding Metaphors

Five Metaphors For Crafting Your Brand’s Story

If you’re in the process of DIY’ing your brand, or rebranding your existing business, chances are… you already have an idea of how you’d like your brand to look.

As a marketing and branding agency, we have discovered that many of our clients don’t have any idea of the visual direction for their brand. When it comes to crafting the visual story with photos, videos, or even just a starting point for where to go… Blanks!

This is totally understandable, as not everyone can put on a strategic designer hat and have a high converting, relational story that fully represents all areas of their creative business. As you read through this, start jotting down your ideas, and playing with your brand story.

These branding metaphors are helpful, even for our team, to gain clarity on how a small to medium sized business owner perceives their brand in the present, and where they hope to expand into.

Here are five branding metaphors that you can use to visualize your brand.

Before you start visualizing, know your purpose

Before we begin this visualization exercise, you need to be crystal clear on:

  • You Brand Purpose, Vision and Values
  • Your Ideal Client
  • Your Competition
  • Your Offering (and how it stands out from your competitors)
  • Your Brand Personality

Only once you feel comfortable with your answers to these five points, can you start thinking about the visual direction for your brand. Remember, that although visuals play a big role in your branding, they don’t benefit you if they disconnect with your brand purpose and who your ideal client is. Make sure to spend some time to really nail down these bullet points before answering the next questions. 

Let’s get started with these five branding metaphors!

Before you start answering these questions, remember that there is no right or wrong answer. Most people know what they want their brand to look like, but they don’t know how to express it or visualize it in their heads.

We’re going to challenge you by asking you to step outside of the design world with colour palettes, fonts, and logos, and bring you back to what you feel most comfortable with: your every day life. So, don’t overthink the answer to these. Try to listen to your gut and your heart because the answer lies within you.

1. If your brand were a mood, what would it be?

Is your brand funky and happy? Does your brand make you feel like a kid’s laughter on a carousel? Or maybe you’re more sophisticated and discreet?

Write down what moods come to mind and try to make it come alive as much as possible.

2. If your brand were a colour, what would it be?

For the purpose of this exercise, let’s forget everything about colour theory. Let go of what you think your brand colour should look like, or what it should make you feel. Focus on the first colour that comes to your mind when you think about your brand.

Once you think of the first colour that comes to mind, we challenge you to try to explain why you associate this colour with your brand too.

3. If your brand were a song, what would it be?

Oooh, this is SUCH a great question! The answer to this question gives the most powerful visualization of your brand. And we love reading the answer to this question from our clients because that’s the moment when we can clearly see what the final result for their brand will look like!

We understand it’s also one of the hardest questions, so take some time to think about it.

What jam would be playing when you were talking about your brand?

4. If your brand were an animal, what would it be?

Of course, we identify with a Unicorn – so yes, this animal could be real or fictional. Unicorns align to the sparkle and whimsy, while standing out as a unique character. This is how we feel about Unicorn Marketing Co., marketing is magical… and playful, fun, exciting, and we’re here to make this experience easier.

Which animal do you feel suits your brand the most and why?

And finally…

5. If you could dress up your brand, what would it wear?

Let’s imagine now that your brand is a person and play dress up! What kind of clothes would it wear? What brands would these clothes be?

Once you have answered this, think about whether this style would appeal to your Ideal Client. If not, then how can you improve on this and make it more aligned with your creative business.

We’d love to hear your answers!

So there you have it! These five branding metaphors are ready help you visualize your brand and bring it to life!

If you’ve answered all of these, you should already have way more clarity for your visual brand direction than before. But if you need some extra help here, try to come up with more metaphors like these to help you out!

For example:

  • If your brand were a book, what would it be?
  • If your brand were a movie, what would it be?
  • If your brand were a dish, what would it be?
  • If your brand were a city, what would it be?
  • If your brand were a flower, what would it be?

Which question helped you visualise your brand the most?

The mood? Animal? Song? Whichever one it was, we’d love to hear all about it!

Thanks for reading!

We are friggin’ stoked about brand identity, strategy, and storytelling here at Unicorn Marketing Co.

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