Muscle Up! 4 Tips for a Strong, Cohesive Brand

Having a strong look and feel visually, on paper, and in the digital space doesn’t mean that you have to redesign your logo every year. For some companies, it means time for a refresh or updated look, and for others it means strengthening the components of their brand to make it stronger and more cohesive.

I suppose as a graphic designer, that’s easy for me to say – right? After getting questions about what it takes to put more power behind a brand, I decided to write a blog about it. Everything from what I consider a “brand” to be, what makes a brand powerful, and where you can start.

What is a Brand?

Several years ago Jerry McLaughlin wrote a blog for Forbes about branding. In the article he said, “I think ‘brand’ is one of those words that is widely used but unevenly understood.” and I couldn’t agree more. We all have an idea or vision of what branding means; it’s the label or image that distinguishes one company, product, or service, from others. You’re not wrong. But when it comes to the impression and reputation of your company, graphic design and digital presence really take it to the next level.

What Makes Strong Branding?

In our world at MAS Media, we consider branding to be the tangible and intangible representation of who you are and what you do. When we look at “a brand” we’re looking at all the facets – your logo, color palette, font choice, icons, imagery, digital and print design, signage, style and voice of writing … all the pieces that tell your customers and potential buyers your story.

The strongest brands have powerful colors, consistent visual elements, strong imagery… the things you can see and can create. But these visual aspects are the most powerful when they collaborate with the elements of branding we feel. The emotion, message, and impressions you give – the “judging a book by it’s cover” instinct.

One of the most important ways you can strengthen your brand, though, is making in cohesive and consistent. And like I mentioned earlier – for some companies, updating their look and logo means a redesign, and for some it means an update or facelift. I’ll use Starbucks as an example. Starbucks first opened in the early 1970’s. Did you know their brand color was brown? Yes, brown as the coffee you get there. But over time, they’ve enhanced and updated their original logo and branding to keep it updated and modern. Check this out:

But what did Starbucks do right? They were consistent. When Starbucks updates its branding – they don’t just change the cups and leave the website and social media pages outdated. They take their branding and visual elements and the consistency of them and weave them into every aspect of their business.

4 Tips for Bolstering Your Brand

If you’re not sure where to start, I totally understand. To make it a little less scary, use these four tips to dig in and begin assessing the strength of your brand, and how cohesive it is.

1. Start with Your Logo

What does your logo say about you? Is it the name of your business in a nice color or font? Does it have imagery that helps your audience understand what you do? Does it combine colors and icons in a way that give people a sense of who you are? If you look at your logo and roll your eyes with disgust, it might be time for something more fresh and updated – something you can resonate with. Heck, Bremer Bank just did… you can too. Or, if you look at your logo and think “there’s some good aspects of this” but feel some dusting off could give it new life, then take a step forward. Having a visual representation of your brand that everyone in your business can get behind is important.

2. Website = Digital Impression

More often than you might think, we start working with businesses who have a certain logo, brand, or feel in their building or place of business, but it’s completely different than what is shown on their website. Research found that over 90% of consumers will search for a company online before calling or visiting the store or business to make a purchase. NINETY PERCENT! There’s some serious opportunity to make an outstanding first impression with your website … don’t let an inconsistent or outdated brand confuse or turn-off your buyers.

3. Update Print Materials

Yes – we live in the “digital age”, but I’m sure we can all agree there are just some print materials that never fail. I’m talking point-of-sale materials, business cards, and depending on who your audience is – brochures, folders, and letter head. If your print materials don’t match the look and feel – or even use an old set of colors, fonts, logos, and imagery … time to take a step toward more consistent branding.

4. Social Media Matters

I’m sure I’m not the first one to tell you that social media is a big deal for businesses. Whether you’re using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest (ok, that list could go on and on) … the profile you have is like your social media business card. Make sure you’re using voice and messaging that is consistent with your brand standards and a look that is unified with your website and all other materials. If someone finds you on social media first, you want to make sure they’re confident it’s the same business they find online or in-person.


If this blog got your wheels turning about an updated brand or refreshed marketing strategy, let’s talk!

Start A Conversation

82 thoughts on “Muscle Up! 4 Tips for a Strong, Cohesive Brand”

  1. Pingback: viagra 25mg cost

  2. Pingback: cialis walmart

  3. Pingback: cialis de 40 mg

  4. Pingback: viagra 25mg price

  5. It’s remarkable designed for me to possess a Web-site, which is effective made for my expertise. thanks admin

  6. I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here.
    The sketch is tasteful, your authored subject matter
    stylish. nonetheless, you command get bought an shakiness over that you wish
    be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come further formerly again as exactly
    the same nearly very often inside case you shield this increase.

  7. Hello There. I discovered your weblog using msn. This is a really
    neatly written article. I’ll make sure to bookmark it and come back
    to read more of your useful information. Thanks for the post.

    I will definitely return.

  8. This design is spectacular! You definitely know how to keep a reader
    amused. Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved to start my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Fantastic job.

    I really loved what you had to say, and more than that, how you presented
    it. Too cool!

  9. Hello just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know a few of the pictures aren’t loading properly.

    I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried
    it in two different web browsers and both show the same results.

  10. Excellent post. I was checking constantly this weblog and I am impressed!
    Extremely useful info particularly the last phase :
    ) I deal with such information a lot. I used to be seeking this particular info for a very long time.
    Thanks and best of luck.

  11. I’m really enjoying the design and layout of your website.
    It’s a very easy on the eyes which makes it much
    more pleasant for me to come here and visit more often. Did you
    hire out a developer to create your theme? Exceptional work!

  12. It is the best time to make some plans for the future and it is time to be happy.
    I’ve learn this post and if I may just I wish to counsel you few fascinating issues or tips.

    Perhaps you can write next articles regarding this article.
    I wish to learn even more things about it!

  13. Hi, I do think your site could be having internet browser compatibility problems.
    Whenever I take a look at your blog in Safari,
    it looks fine however, if opening in IE, it’s got some
    overlapping issues. I just wanted to provide you with a quick heads up!
    Apart from that, fantastic blog!

  14. Hello terrific website! Does running a blog similar to this require a great deal of
    work? I’ve no understanding of computer programming but I was hoping to start my own blog soon. Anyway, if you
    have any suggestions or tips for new blog owners
    please share. I understand this is off topic however I simply
    had to ask. Thanks a lot!

  15. My coder is trying to convince me to move to .net from PHP.

    I have always disliked the idea because of the costs.
    But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using Movable-type on a variety
    of websites for about a year and am concerned about switching to another platform.
    I have heard great things about Is there a way I can import all my wordpress posts into it?
    Any help would be really appreciated!

  16. I do not even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was
    good. I don’t know who you are but definitely you’re going to a
    famous blogger if you are not already 😉 Cheers!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.