Branding is tied directly to one’s personal experience which is driven largely by emotions. You can trigger the desired responses in your target audiences with images, colors, shapes, numbers, and words. Depending on the visual cues you choose and how you arrange them, they can be powerful triggers that can spark excitement, fear, sadness, desire, and yes, even hate.

Your brand, in a nutshell, represents the culture of your target audience where they interact with your product or service. It’s the reason they’ve chosen to have a relationship with your company. And that relationship can only be sustained with clear communication.

Here are a few tips for making communication design work best for your brand:

Create a brand positioning statement. This serves as a guide for company staff, suppliers, and leadership when making decisions about campaigns and initiatives that need to align with the company mission and culture.

Develop visual identity standards. You only get one chance to make a good first impression with audiences that are new to your brand. What they see—your logo, color palette, advertising, social media posts—is their first encounter with your brand. These standards will help you maintain a consistent communication style that uniquely resonates with your audience.

Use images that reflect who your target audience is. Know your audience as much as you can and choose images of people, things, and places that represent their culture. This is key to triggering an emotional connection for your brand.

In closing, communication design is a pillar for your brand’s success. Be sure to always include it at the table where major decisions are being made that impact how your customers engage with your brand.