The casual outsider might refer to colors, logos or style as the brand. But these elements alone are not the brand. They merely point to what the brand is or what it wants to be. These superficial elements are no more brand than your clothing, your name, or your passport is you. They might hint at who you are, but do they really capture your personality? Your history? Your full potential?
So in many ways, branding is first a philosophical pursuit, a spiritual journey, a conceptual strategic discussion… before it comes down to the tangible nuts and bolts that we more commonly use to describe brand and communicate identity.
This is part of the reason that branding is so difficult. This is also the reason why branding is so important. The person who doesn’t know who they are is aloof, lost, searching… BUT the company who doesn’t know what they are is scattered, confusing, and ultimately, uncompetitive... and doomed to fail.
So yes, branding is very much an existential affair!