What is Corporate Identity?

Corporate Identity (also abbreviated CI) refers to the corporate identity, which is determined by the characteristics, values, culture and appearance of the company. It is the sum of all indicators that distinguishes a company from other companies. The corporate identity is the self-image of a company. It has to be distinguished from the corporate image, i.e. the perception of others.

The company's overall communications performance (internal and external) aims, among other things, to make its corporate identity visible by presenting the company in a uniform manner and perceiving it as a kind of personality. This "corporate personality" is essentially determined by the corporate strategy, ccorporate ommunication and visual appearance. Facing inward, the corporate identity offers employees orientation by cultivating corporate values and deriving and further developing principles of conduct. Facing outward, the corporate identity stands for the values and goals of the institution and thus for a clear, unmistakable profile.

Corporate identity can be supported by consistent reputation management.

Are corporate identity and corporate design the same?

A stringent corporate identity and a consistently recognizable corporate design are central elements of a brand. They create an image for a company and thus ensure a consistent and unmistakable brand presence.

Both terms are closely related. But strictly speaking, corporate design is a subset of corporate identity. Corporate design describes the visual aspects of a company's appearance to the public and to its own employees. In addition, there is the defined purpose of the company, the promise of performance to customers and clients, common goals of the employees, lived principles as well as beliefs developed over a long period of time.

The sum of all this then makes up the corporate identity. This is often prepared in text form in the form of a "company mission statement" and defined creatively in a "brand manifesto".

What the Corporate Identity also includes

The corporate identity is divided into sub-areas. In addition to corporate design, it also includes

  • the Corporate Language, i.e. company-specific terms and special features of language design,
  • the corporate philosophy, which is derived from the intentions and self-image of the founder(s) of the company,
  • the Corporate Culture as the internally lived system of behaviour, based on the Corporate Philosophy,
  • corporate behaviour, i.e. the company-specific behaviour of employees or the organisation as a whole in public and towards stakeholders
  • as well as corporate communication, internal and external corporate communication
Corporate Identity: The self-image of a company and the sum of all characteristics that distinguish it from others. Companies with a strong corporate identity are perceived as "corporate personalities". And this "personality" is significantly determined by the corporate strategy, the communication and the visual appearance. Develop and maintain a strong corporate identity as a prerequisite for a clear, unmistakable profile – as a business partner, employer and part of society. Talk to us.

Corporate values architecture – Basis for a strong corporate identity and stringent, methodical communication work

Based on the criteria used by decision-makers in business and administration to assess the reputation of a company or a brand, we develop a self-image in the form of a company-specific value edifice – an Architecture of Corporate Values. With this methodical tool we describe specific strengths, special features, services and values of companies and institutions – for a unique, future-proof identity. And as the basis for consistent, integrated communication.

In which tasks we can support those responsible in the area of Corporate Identity:

  • Initiation and control of corporate identity processes
  • Development of a corporate value architecture or other concentrated representations of corporate identity
  • Derivation, maintenance and further development of the company's mission statement as a code of conduct for the company
  • Internal communication around the mission statement
  • Regular review of key corporate identity data through internal opinion research
  • Design and implementation of all communication media of a company, internal and external
  • Processing of requests for details of the corporate identity
  • Planning, development and operation of internal/company-wide platforms for brand management
  • Control of external service providers such as agencies and other consultants

How does your company identify itself?

Let's talk about how we can sharpen and further develop the identity of your company.

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Practical examples


B2B software specialist with clear principles


Examination and certification company with a unique profile

Bayer Business Services

New positioning and mission statement


Tax consultants and auditors with a unique personality

Bayer AG

Bayer Identity Net: Global Guidelines for Corporate Identity