Creating a strong brand can help differentiate your app from other similar products. Without a clear value proposition your app will struggle to survive in the market of 8.93 million mobile apps. Afterall, people don’t choose Starbucks over other coffee shops because their coffee is significantly different.
The secret lies in branding.
In earlier articles, we have defined branding as the overall image that your mobile app creates through an identifying symbol, mark, logo, name, word, sentence, and in any other forms. In this article, we will explore some of the most important elements of mobile app branding:
App name & style
The name of the app plays an integral role in setting the style and concept of your app. You need to ensure that your app name, slogan and style appeal to your target audience in a way that makes them feel that the app is specifically designed for them, in alignment with their values and is keeping their needs in mind.
Your app name should also be short and memorable, reflective of the app functions and brand values, and differentiable from your competitors.
Additionally, ensure the distinguishability of the name on App Store and Google store, a domain name and landing page for your app, and if there are other brands in the market using the name.
It is important to put careful thought into your app name and style before the development process. As mentioned in previous articles, it can be costly to change the branding of your app during or after development.
App logo & icons
Your logo is more than aesthetics. It is a visual representation of your brand, meaning that it should be able to convey your brand values to your audience.
There are 5 basic types of logos:
- Wordmark: artistic presentation of the app name without images.
- Lettermark: creative presentation of the first letter of the app name.
- Symbol: a symbolic image that represents an element associated with the brand.
- Combination mark: a combination of a wordmark or lettermark with a symbol.
- Emblem: symbolized presentation of the wordmark or lettermark.
When it comes to mobile app branding, your icons are as important as your logo. Your icons are the visual representation of an action or concept in your app, and the app icon is how the user visualizes your app on different mobile platforms.
With technical dimensions and restrictions of the system where icons are displayed, they typically have a simpler design, in addition to not being as scalable as logos.
Developing a colour palette for your brand is essential to achieve visual consistency throughout your brand. Your colour palette should include 4-6 colours, including both light and dark, dominant and accent.
There are different composition types of colour palettes:
- Monochromatic: using colours within the same hue with varying shades, tints or tones.
- Analogous: using colours adjacent to each other on the colour wheel.
- Complementary: using colours from the opposite side of the colour wheel.
While monochromatic is easier to create, if done poorly, it can make your brand appear boring or washed out. Monochromatic colour palettes are great for creating a relaxed and pleasing brand, but when it comes to bringing energy, helping your brand stands out and to achieve a better visual balance, a complementary colour palette does a way better job.
Most importantly, your brand colours matter because they evoke certain emotions of the audience, and you want to ensure the emotions generated are aligned with what your app wants to achieve. Understanding the colour psychology will help you develop a colour palette that significantly enhances your brand.
For example, consider implementing a complementary colour palette for a fitness app, and include colours such as orange, which is associated with the emotions of happiness and enthusiasm.
What would people find if they search up the name of your app, or “best app to _(insert what your app does)?” Hopefully, they’ll find your Landing Page! Your landing page is one of your most important digital presence. It should clearly convey the benefits and functions of your app, and leads your audience to download your app.
App Store Optimization increases the chances of your app getting organic downloads through users searching on the App Store. Assigning the right keywords for your app is an important step to achieve App Store Optimization. To do this, carefully analyze your app marketing positioning and target audience to find out which keywords are most frequently used by your target audience and most relevant to your brand.
Treat branding as a long term investment. If done successfully, your brand power can make your app worth way more than its content. Even if you don’t aim to be the next Starbucks in the app market, you should always strive to achieve a cohesive brand identity that leaves the right impression and builds trust with your audience.