Luxury Branding: Everything You Need For A Cohesive Brand


What does your brand say about your business before you do?

Luxury branding – is more than just the visual side of your brand. It has many important elements that will attract or detract people from your business. 

Your brand is often the first introduction someone has to your business.

So how can you create a captivating luxury brand that people desire?

A luxury brand that creates brand ambassadors for your business.

There are many components that go into luxury branding.

In this article, I’ll be covering what is cohesive luxury branding.

So that you can stand out and help your ideal customers easily identify you are the right brand for them.

But first…

What is a Modern Luxury Brand?

Before we can dive into building a cohesive luxury brand. Let’s get clarity around what “luxury” actually is. There are many meanings and perspectives of “what is luxury?”

Some common traits that most people would agree with make something luxurious are…

  • Quality craftsmanship.
  • Not marketed to everyone.
  • High-end or expensive.
  • Presumptuous.

When studying the traits of most luxury brands. What defines a brand as luxury is the “experience”.

Here’s Why.

Two or more brands could be offering or selling the same type of products. But one brand has a better experience than the other.

People who value a better experience are willing to invest more.

Thinking about consumer behavior and human psychology. Some people will place a higher value on some goods versus others.

Here are some examples of customers’ values based on price.

The bargain consumer – will focus on price over quality or getting their problem solved. Shoppers in this category are willing to invest the least amount of money. Some are even willing to deal with the risk or consequences of reduced quality for a cheaper price. This is not the target consumer of a luxury brand.

The mid-range consumer – are not interested in the cheapest option. They also don’t want the most expensive option either. They’re in the middle and are willing to invest a bit more if it makes sense.

The quality-focused consumer – perceives a higher price with higher quality. These types of consumers, often want to invest in a high-quality or a high-touch experience. They are focused on a future desired state. Anything low or mid-range would absolutely turn them off. The consumers in this category are most likely the type of consumers you’d want for your luxury brand. Followed by the mid-range consumer.

What is Luxury Branding?

Luxury branding is about creating the perception of a business.

There are intangible and tangible elements to luxury branding.

  • Intangible elements focus on your mission, vision, values, etc.
  • Tangible elements focus on your luxury brand identity.

In this article, I’ll be focusing on the brand identity aspects.

After defining your luxury brand strategy, the next area to explore is your brand identity.

Brand identity is the visual components of your brand. Such as your logo, typography, colors, etc.

These are the forward-facing elements that your customers will see.

Before I get into the specifics of luxury brand identity. Let’s examine some core elements of luxury branding.

A Solid Brand Foundation

One of the first areas that you want to cover for your luxury brand is your brand’s foundation. The foundation helps you to identify the way your brand shows up online, who it engages with, and the type of experience you want to create for your customers. 

Your luxury brand needs to be clear on the type of customers it serves. It also needs to have a clear brand vision and values. Your luxury brand should also be intentional about how you want to be positioned in the market. 

For example, what is your brand’s unique point of view? Do you serve only a particular market? Or do you solve a specific need in the market? Think about how you can incorporate your brand story into the marketing and positioning of your luxury brand’s influence in the market. 

Tiffany & Co does a great of this in how they communicate their brand positioning in advertising. Here you can see Tracee Ellis Ross showcasing their Tiffany T line.

Once you’ve clearly defined your positioning and who your luxury brand serves in the market. You can then move on to the other steps of developing your brand, which include your visual identity

Before you can develop your brand’s visual image, you need to be clear on who your customers are and the type of experience you want to create for your business. Then once you set a clear path and foundation for your brand, you can move on to develop your brand visual identity. 

Suggested reading: What Is Luxury Brand Strategy And Why You Need One

Well-Written Storytelling & Persuasive Copy

Now that you have a solid foundation. Part of having a well-centered brand is the website copy. Website copy essentially is the words that you are using to describe who you serve in the market. 

Your website copy also is a way for your customers to connect more with the personality of your brand. And your overall business values.

This is definitely not an area that you would want to bypass. It’s important to pay particular attention to how well-written your copy is for your brand. Your words should pull your customers into your business, articulating your brand and moving them closer to taking action.

Your website copy should also make your customers feel engaged and be easy for them to understand. For example, being clear about what it is you want your customers to know. Then clearly showcase the next steps that you want them to take on your website.

Well-written copy can be the catalyst to help your customers take the next step to completing a sale.

If you need additional help with creating your copy you can work with a professional copywriter that works with eCommerce brands. Or work with me here at The May Creative, I offer this option as an additional elevated add-on so that my clients have the well-written words they need to pull in more attention for their business.

Luxury eCommerce Guide

A Cohesive Luxury Brand Identity

Now that you have a solid brand of foundation and well-written copy, you can then focus on your visual identity. The visual identity of your brand is the visual side that actually attracts customers to your business. 

The development of your visual identity comes from your brand foundation. Because you are now very clear on who your ideal customers are, what your brand’s tone of voice is, and your brand’s position. You can then use those assets of your business to design the visual identity of your brand. 

What is included in the visual identity of your brand?

There are some standard elements that go into your visual identity. Think about all the ways your brand will show up online and offline. 

Here are some visual areas to consider for your brand:

  • Your website & digital presence
  • Online for social media
  • In any guides or marketing materials
  • When partnering or taking part in events
  • On your physical products

For the visual identity of your business, you should have.

As a luxury brand, your logo should be a sophisticated identifier that alerts people that this is your business. You may have seen other luxury brands have really simplified logos as their mark. The reason behind this is that simplified marks can withstand the test of time. 

While yes it’s fun to be trendy. But with trends, you’ll need to constantly shift to make sure that your brand is current with the times.

If you are constantly switching your business’s logo you’ll end up weakening your brand.

A Cohesive luxury brand Color Palette

Color plays a huge role in tugging and triggering the emotions of your customers. In fact, there is scientific data that dives into the psychology of how colors influence our emotions. Have you ever noticed that certain brands are always associated with certain colors?

For example, Apple is associated with silver or light grey. The psychology behind the color silver is calm, neutral, and balanced. 

While another brand like Target’s red is more aligned with bold and youthful. 

Depending on the type of customers you want to attract. Your brand’s colors should tap into the psychology of your buyers. Otherwise, if select the wrong colors you could repel your customers and not even know it.

Let me throw in another example, maybe you want to sell luxury skincare products that are more natural. Then the color green might be a great color to incorporate into your brand. As the color green is synonymous with health and growth. 

Refined & Legible Typography

There is even psychology around the type of typography you use for your brand. Typography plays an important role in your business as well. With that said, your brand will be shared on various business assets. You’ll want to ensure that it’s legible. 

Nothing can be more of a turnoff than if people can’t read the information about products. Have you ever seen a product that had hard-to-read fonts?

While sometimes script or handwritten styles may be beautiful. It should be used sparingly as it is not as legible to read.

Seriously, imagine if your doctor wrote lines and lines of text by hand for a website. People would instantly click off. 

Design Patterns or Elements

Another way to help your visuals to stand out is through patterns or textures. 

These additional design elements can help add some extra emphasis to your brand. Especially for social or print graphics. 

Like the other assets of your visual identity, these elements also need to flow with the vibe and direction of your brand.

Luxury Packaging

One of the most important areas to invest in for your visual branding is the packaging. 

Packaging is a bit more involved because you have to work with prototypes and heavy consumer research depending on your product line. 

But I always tell my clients that their products should be top-shelf worthy. Meaning that their customers should be happy to display their products on top of their counters, vanity, or within eyesight.

This is especially true for products that your customers will be using regularly. 

For example, maybe your product is a deodorant. This is a regularly used item so having packaging that also looks great is essential. 

Your branding also needs to take into account that your packaging will be used in other areas of your business. 

Think about every aspect of your packaging details such as:

  • The shipping box of your products
  • The tissue & sticker that you’ll use to wrap your products
  • Any thank you or note cards
  • Labels or bags
  • Any gift card packaging

We’ve all seen those dream unboxings on IG or YouTube where someone is so excited to receive their order that they want to unbox their products on camera. 

Imagine that being your brand and the feeling of excitement your customers will experience. W

As a business owner that is definitely #goals.

Imagery

We are definitely a more visual world, especially with digital media all around us. The images you use in your brand not only are there for aesthetic purposes. But they are also there to help tell a supporting story about your brand and its products. 

Great imagery sells as it positions the main character or in your case main product as the desire. The fashion industry does this all the time. They sell through images by telling a story. A purse is not simply a purse, it’s a statement piece that increases confidence.

Make sure that your imagery always ties back to the essence of your brand. You can also do experiments, for example, when you do a new limited edition release. Sometimes you can break away from your brand just a bit to show differentiation. 

Luxury Branding Mistakes

With luxury branding, you’ll want to avoid turning off affluent or high-end customers.

Watch this live video recording I did on Luxury Branding Mistakes That Turn Off High-end Customers.

Incorporate Your Luxury Branding Into Other Aspects Of Your Business

Now that you have a solid brand and the visuals to match. It’s now time to incorporate your brand into additional areas of your business. 

Your Shopify Website Experience

As an eCommerce consultancy that helps modern luxury brands craft elevated eCommerce experiences that increase product sales on Shopify & Klaviyo. One of those areas is going to be your eCommerce website.

Your website is the primary destination for your products and so having a cohesive brand will help you in many areas of running a successful online store.

Such as having an online store that your customers trust and feel is credible. Your brand will help speak to their desires and wants, helping them to feel more confident in your business. 

Your online shopping experience will strategically speak and guide your ideal customers to make more consistent purchases.

These are just some things that can come from combining well-intentioned luxury branding & a solid eCommerce website experience.

Your Email Marketing

I’m such an advocate for email marketing as it’s one of the best owned-marketing channels you can have within your business. Your email marketing experience can have that same cohesive brand experience when you have a solid brand. 

When customers are new to your brand it’s important that you introduce them to your business. Email marketing is a great way to do that. I highly recommend a tool such as Klaviyo to help you create a more omnichannel shopping experience. 

Where a customer signs up for your newsletter or purchases a product from you. They receive a personalized email with information about your brand or their products. 

Here is where you can use your branding to communicate the messaging of your brand and start to build a more meaningful relationship with your customers. 

Because you are in their inbox you are able to speak directly to them. Email gives you a higher opportunity of your customers not being distracted by other businesses on the IG feed or other photos or videos screaming for their attention.

Inspiring to check out more from your product line and become return shoppers who happily recommend your brand to others that they know.

For email marketing, I highly recommend developing a solid marketing strategy that will tie into your overall brand. The strategy or plan will help you measure if your efforts are working as intended. Depending on how far along in your business you are this strategy will be different based on your current & long-term business needs.

Want to learn more about Klaviyo for email marketing? Read through the suggested reading: Flodesk Vs Klaviyo: Which Is the Best For eCommerce?

When is the Right Time to Rebrand Your Luxury Brand?

Now, that you know what is needed for cohesive luxury branding. If you have a current brand, it may be time for you to look into rebranding.

A rebrand is a great way to update your existing branding to match the type of audience you want to attract.

Whether you are already attracting luxury customers or you want to move into the space of luxury. Having high-end elevated branding is necessary to inspire and build trust with quality customers.

Discover if you are ready for a fresh look by reading: When to Rebrand Your Luxury Brand?

Conclusion

Alright, to tie this all together. Luxury branding is important in ensuring that you are telling a consistent story that represents your brand. You may already have all these elements in place, bits, and pieces, or none at all. Whichever the case, revisit your brand to ensure it tells your brand story and once it does, you’ll be able to use this important business asset for other areas of your business, such as your website. 

Find out what elements you need to have for a successful luxury eCommerce experience that generates sustainable sales. By getting the complimentary guide below.

Luxury Branding: Everything You Need For A Cohesive Brand
k-tmc

I'm Karen, the Luxury Brand Strategist, and eCommerce Expert behind The May Creative, where I help modern luxury brands create sophisticated luxury branding & eCommerce experiences on Shopify. Learn more about elevating your business through The Luxury eCommerce Experience™, a high-end luxury strategy, design, and marketing engagement.

Karen

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