What is it?

An identity can be a simple set of font choices. Alternatively an identity can be very complex & consist of every element of a company seen by the public down even to user manuals or carpets.

This doesn't mean putting a logo on everything - it means coordinating every element seen by the public so that it appears unified & resonates with the positive mental values intended by the company.

Sometimes when an identity is sufficiently well crafted it can even exist without a logo.

Just like a logo an identity should help distinguish your company or organization from the competition to help it be remembered.

An identity is often used to further shape shade & extend the positive associations that an existing logo may already have.

An effective identity is often unnoticed by the conscious mind and works without it's 'reader' realizing what has happened.

Most companies that sell a service or product to the general public will eventually need an identity to effectively compete.

Companies & organizations that need less sophisticated identities & logos tend to only need 'sell' themselves to a select few decision makers. These examples are using direct personal communication or rely exclusively on price rather than graphic communication to archive their results.

Another way of looking at this is that identity is a great way to support & justify higher margins & increased enthusiasm whenever market conditions allow them. Sometimes an identity is what is needed to create higher margins or support & as such can be an extremely valuable investment.