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Top 6 Rules of Brand Building for Indian Fashion Brands Customers receive the energy you put into creating something for them

By Mridul Sawhney

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The fashion industry in India has taken a very interesting turn, from older brands like Sabyasachi making a mark internationally to new pathbreakers like Saaksha & Kinni, each one of them with a strong visual tone have succeeded to make a special space in this overpopulated field.

Let's take a moment to understand what new brands & some existing old guys need to know about authentic brand building.

1. Authentic Imagery & Instagram Design

From your logo, fonts, colours, layouts to your final imagery, set a solid lexicon for your brand. Define who you are as a brand, every inch of it & let that be your bible for the years to come. Brands in India are becoming more aware & conscious about their Instagram imagery these days, great content is key but great 'Looking' content, a well thought out approach has become more important rather than using it for purely sales, as Instagram accounts have become the go-to pages to check a brand's value & work, it is essential to have a signature style in graphics for your Instagram accounts. Nothing is more powerful than well-designed imagery to reflect what your brand stands for.

2. Constantly Design an Experience & Innovative Ideas to Stay Relevant

Creative minds get inspired on a daily basis by almost everything around them, make sure to sift those ideas through your logical mind to take the final call. We live in a super-fast paced generation, to get people interested you need to constantly give them an enriching experience through every little piece of tangible or intangible collateral going out from your brand. It is all about the cause, the emotion, the mood & the connection you are able to form with your customer. Therefore, make sure to design your brand communication to treat all senses on digital platforms as well as print media.

3. Own Your Visual Identity & Increase Recall Value

Originality is the key to increasing recall value amongst your audience. Create your own honest visual language by tapping into the real-time source of inspiration. The Internet is great but by tapping into sources like Pinterest & Behance, like all others, there is no way your work will not be influenced by somebody else's creation. Go back to old-time methods, work your way through history, books, cultures, real-time people & be inspired through authentic channels to execute that into the iconic design.

4. Don't Blindly Follow Trends, Stay True to Your Vision

As they rightly say 'Only dead fish go with the flow'. Watch your competition closely, but if you start following your competition closely how will you ever succeed? So break away & stay true to your vision. Be fierce yet patient to see the results of any branding activity, it is an ongoing process & does not take shape overnight.

5. Design for the Impatient Customer, Make it Easy

Today's customer is impatient, fashion is faster than ever, with the variety available online, brands must make their products available in a few clicks. It also gives the brand endless possibilities to showcase their products & stay relevant. With ever growing busy lifestyles, taking out time for shopping has become impossible for any working individual, the online game has become as important as owning an Instagram account today.

6. Find Your Dream Team, Grow With Them

You can only go so far alone; it takes an army to build an iconic brand. Find the right people & help them grow as you do. Don't get people on board with the mindset of 'hiring' them, get them on board to 'collaborate'. The donkey work mindset needs to change in India, every individual demands respect & growth, once you give that to your employees there is nothing that can stop them from living, breathing & working for the brand.

Branding is the core of every brand, ultimately people will pay attention if you pay attention to little details. My ex-employer Nikasha rightly taught me something very important, she said 'Customers receive the energy you put into creating something for them'. It's time to stop being lazy & paying attention to authenticity & pure storytelling.

Mridul Sawhney

Creative Director & Founder, AM Branding Co

Mridul Sawhney, Visual communication designer from NIFT, Banglore. Founder of a luxury branding studio - AM Branding Co. on a mission to refine India visually. Worked with over 30 brands in India helping them build an iconic brand image offering a suite of art direction, photography, graphic design, styling & more.

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