||||  TIPS + TRICKS: DIFFERENTIATION VS. DISTINCTION  ||||
 

_BE DISTINCT, NOT JUST DIFFERENT

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As a branding agency, our aim is to create and build brand distinction for our clients. This means designing brands that captivate, resonate and move people. 

While many agencies focus on differentiation to achieve this, we focus instead on distinctiveness. The difference in meaning between these two terms may seem minor, yet the outcomes are anything but. 

DIFFERENT IS NOT ENOUGH

Everyone’s familiar with the concept of brand differentiation. By being different, brands offer consumers a reason to believe and a reason to buy. The thing is, differentiation is used to target a specific segment of the market. By its very nature, it’s an approach that means you’re attempting to capture the interest and loyalty of a subset of consumers. Differentiation alone means that you’re limiting your potential audience, and your bottom line. 

Rather than positioning your brand merely to be different, we position it to be distinctive. 

DISTINCTIVE BRANDS STAND ABOVE THE REST

Distinction speaks to the quality that gives a brand prominence within its broader category. There’s no limitation here. Distinctive brands aren’t just different; they’re distinguished from others. They’re the brands with their own voice and identity, the ones that are powerfully themselves. They’re memorable, remaining top-of-mind and benefiting from potent recall and recognition.

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Bottle swingtags expand the experience with tasting notes and house-created recipes.

Bottle swingtags expand the experience with tasting notes and house-created recipes.

A two-way label gives consumers a differing perspective when viewing and pouring.

A two-way label gives consumers a differing perspective when viewing and pouring.

Bold, unapologetic copy captures the spirit and ethos of Revolutionary-era sutlers.

Bold, unapologetic copy captures the spirit and ethos of Revolutionary-era sutlers.

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We worked closely with Sutler's Spirit Co. to help them develop a brand that blended audaciousness with subtlety – just like its historic namesakes. The packaging was inspired by the minimalist, inscrutable ceramic vessels used for housing gin during times past, and rebelling against the clear glass standards that fill the shelves. Check out more of this revolutionary era brand.

Brands that are merely different position themselves in relation to their competitors. No matter how different they strive to be, their identity is a response to other brands. Distinctive brands, on the other hand, are unique. They’re clearly defined, unusual and elevated in some way. They don’t stand apart: they stand above. 

DISTINCTIVE BRANDS ARE CONSISTENTLY UNIQUE

Creating a distinctive brand is about more than brand positioning: it’s about brand identity. Distinctive brands leverage design in a considered way that evokes and facilitates connections and memory-making. 

When it comes to building brands that rise above in the market, uniqueness and consistency are key. In working with clients to develop or update a brand, we strive to create instantly distinguishable identities that surprise and delight while fulfilling – and surpassing – their promises. The outcome isn’t just different. It’s distinct.

Our goal as brand advocates is to help our clients create and build brand distinction. To learn more about our branding approach, get in touch.


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