Three Must-Haves for a Strong Branding Strategy

TriVision, a D.C. branding agency, outlines what makes a brand successful.

Branding is about design.

Yes, while this may be true, it’s only part of the branding mix. Images help people associate products, services, and causes more quickly. Humans have been branding since we discovered how to walk upright. Figures on walls were symbols of a story. The same idea is still present in a modern branding strategy. Strong brands have color palettes, shapes, lines, and various icons (i.e. animals, fruits, trees, etc.) which helps their target audience distinguish them from their competitors.

Branding is about People.

Branding is as much about interpersonal human interactions as it is about visuals and advertisements. In the past, organizations could only get feedback from customers via mail, phone calls, surveys, and other traditional forms of data collection. Today, with the surge of social media and other trending digital technologies, organizations can amplify their messages to the masses while simultaneously interacting with their audiences at an interpersonal level. Brands who communicate with their audience by listening, engaging, and taking action, strengthen and enhance the brand perception of their organization.

Branding is about Trust.

When people feel that a brand listens to their needs, that’s when they begin to trust them. Organizations must preserve trust in their brands at all costs. Otherwise, what’s the point of having a brand if people don’t trust what you do? Businesses have lost sales, non-profits have lost loyal donors and volunteers, and public figures have had their names ruined all because people lost trust. All it takes is consistency in quality and service, and a constant push to meet customer expectations.

Branding Case Study:


All the points listed above are essential for creating a strong brand. To illustrate how TriVision incorporated these three points in branding campaigns we have implemented for our clients in the past, here is the brand revamp we launched for the United States Export-Import Bank of the United States.

The Export-Import Bank faced a challenge.  How could it merge its traditional conservative traditions with a fresh and contemporary aesthetic that would encourage potential investors?  To achieve this goal, EXIM Bank collaborated with TriVision on the strategy and visual design of a new brand.

During the research process, TriVision conducted interviews with customers, employees, and the executive board of EXIM Bank to generate standout, multi-perspective concepts for the new logo. Based on those findings, we then modified the concepts and presented multiple designs to focus groups for further refinement.

Once the new corporate identity and messaging was established,  TriVision developed the design template for EXIM’s marketing materials, such as flyers and brochures (including Small Business, Policy, and International) and also provided a brand style guide on how to properly use the brand. This style guide was the main tool in implementing the new brand, and covered every topic from the initial use of the logo placement to the percentage value used for the tagline.

The impact of the revamped EXIM brand was very positive. Employees, stakeholders and business affiliates fully embraced the new brand, which has been used on their website and across their marketing materials and signage in many trade shows and events, including the EXIM Annual Conference.


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