How Messaging Can Inspire Visual Brand Identity for ReDEV

Branding, Real Estate Development

Read Time: 4 Min

What do you think of when you think of a brand?

Chances are, your answer is a logo. And you aren’t wrong.

Most people think of what they see when a brand comes to mind: The Nike swoosh, the Apple apple — you know, the most recognizable part of a brand.

But how did those logos get developed?

Building a brand is like building a house. Of course, we care about the way it looks: the wrap-around porch, the color of the exterior, the roof structure, but you can’t have a beautiful house without a good foundation — something to hold it up and inspire the architecture.

It’s the difference between brand visuals and brand messaging. You can’t have one without the other, and more often than not, it’s a good idea to start with messaging, so the brand visuals are supported, and hopefully, come to you naturally.


What is Brand Messaging?

Brand messaging ensures you are saying or writing the right things in alignment with who you are and what your brand stands for. Messaging gives your audience a promise, letting them know what will be reflected upon them if they engage with you.

Brand messaging can consist of any of the following: brand story, mission & vision, tone & voice, brand personality, core values, and key differentiators.

Your brand messaging should be visible throughout every aspect of your business. It should be easy for your customers to point you out from a crowd. It is just as recognizable as a logo when done properly.

But what about a logo? If messaging should be visible throughout every aspect of your business, isn’t that the case for your visuals too? Yes. Let’s get into it.

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Messaging’s Impact on Visuals

Your brand tone and voice help mold a personality. If you specialize in building offices and business institution complexes your tone is going to be more professional and to the point, your personality might shape visuals that are clean, serious, and buttoned-up. If you specialize in building apartment complexes geared toward young adults and recent graduates, your tone might be more fun-loving and approachable, with a personality more casual and full of color — you can imagine how the visuals would turn out.

Personality = aesthetic. It’s true for people too, right?

Remember the foundation with which the brand is built. If you define and embrace your brand messaging and personality before diving into visuals, your visuals will come easily.

Ways in Which Visual Storytelling Enhances Brand Messaging: 

  1. Visual storytelling can tell your story more simply than words. If you’ve spent the time defining your brand messaging, you have the opportunity to condense your ideas into simple visual elements to support it.
  2. Visual storytelling strengthens the delivery of a message. Your message will be directly reflected in your visuals, which will allow audiences to understand more easily.
  3. Visual storytelling is more approachable than words on a page. People don’t always like to take the time to read about a product or service, so expressing your message visually will open up your offering to more people.

What does all this have to do with real estate?

Each community or apartment building targets sales to a specific audience group with a specific drive and aesthetic. It’s important to define your promise and the way you speak to your audience before you consider moving into visuals. Are they a fun, energetic group? Are you a fun, energetic property? Maybe bold colors and patterns are the way to express your personality.
Think about your complex or development, think about your audience, write your messaging, and the visuals will come.

Let’s take a look at our work with The Calo for Greystar Development and Metlife.

We knew two things about this property: it’s located near the beautiful nature of Utah’s mountains, and it wanted to encourage connection among its residents. With that knowledge, we developed the name The Calo and a robust messaging platform to go along with it.

The story and personality were inspired by the state flower (Calochortus nuttallii) and the visual of flowers growing across an open field. Community, connection, nature, and the idea of ‘how home should feel’ directly impacted the development of the logo and brand visuals. The colors were drawn from the nature surrounding the complex, and the logo itself is similar to a flower, which became a symbol of gathering and community for this brand identity. Through the visuals, you can see Greystar and Metlife’s promise to their future residents: At The Calo, you can expect everyone, including them, to be a good neighbor.

Messaging first, visuals will follow.

Think about who you are at your core. What do you want your audience to think about and feel when they step onto your property? Those elements of a brand’s messaging platform are what will directly inspire the visuals. Don’t discount messaging when it comes to recognition, sales, and customer satisfaction.

The Calo sales folder and stationery

What’s Next?

Well, if you don’t already have one, start writing a messaging platform. Start with your brand promise. What do you want to tell your customers? Who are you at your core?

If you don’t know the answers to these questions, we can help you.

Take a look at some of our other work to see how strong messaging platforms have informed visuals for a number of our real estate clients.

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