Turning bland into brand?
If you’re thinking about giving a ‘Spring Clean’ to your company’s marketing strategy this year, it makes sense to begin with your corporate brand. A strong brand is essential to a successful marketing campaign. It’s the element which projects the image you want your potential customers to have in their mind about what it’s like to work with your business.
Get your corporate branding right and you’ve got a clear direction for all your subsequent marketing collateral. Your website, your brochure, your sales presentations, and even down to your signage and stationery. They all combine to tell a powerful and consistent story about your business. Getting it right, your brand becomes easy to remember as it ingrains itself in your customers conscious.
So how do you create a strong brand identity?
A lot of people talk about it, but very few people understand it. Even fewer know how to manage it. Still, everyone wants it. What is it? Branding – arguably the most powerful business tool since the spreadsheet.
So let’s start by identifying what we mean when we say ‘brand’. First of all, let’s wipe any misconceptions you have about the term ‘brand’ away. Ok ready? Let’s start… a brand is not a logo, a corporate identity system or a product. A brand is a person’s gut feeling they have about a person, company or product. It’s an emotional response. It’s only when a number of individuals arrive at the same feeling, can a company then be said to have a brand. As Marty Neumeier says in his book ‘The Brand Gap’, A brand is not what you say it is, it’s what THEY say it is.
Customers experience your brand both through the things they see and experience – the marketing collateral, your office environment, customer care and your willingness and ability to adapt to their needs and respond to demands.
Starting your branding project
When starting a corporate branding project, we always seek to understand the company’s history and future strategy. We explore what the management team believe the brand to be, and get under the skin of the actual customer experience and competitive environment. It’s a case of questions, questions, questions though as a result we’re usually able to generate our initial brand identity concepts.
That said, we don’t always get it 100% right first time. As the new brand comes to life, clients usually become clearer about the brand image they want to project, so it’s always a case of refining their preferred concept until we’ve achieved all-round agreement.
If you wish to see examples of recent corporate branding projects, take a look at our recent work, or alternatively, get in touch to discuss how we may be able to help your company to achieve stronger results from marketing in 2017 and beyond.
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