great brand DEVELOPMENT takes your business from ho-hum to HELLO!
The first step in marketing your business starts with developing a strong brand, and sticking to your branding strategy.
Brand development is more than just picking nice colors, or putting words down on paper and then adding your logo in for good measure. To create a look that makes your company instantly recognizable, grabs potential clients’ attention and really brings in business, you need the right visuals paired with compelling copy, communicated in a way that appeals to customers.
And doing all that for your own company is easier said than done.
Partnering with a branding agency such as Design At Work helps you objectively assess who you are as a company, pin down your story and communicate all you offer in way that hits home for your target audience. It’s all about working together to develop a branding strategy that gets your company noticed and generates leads that keep business growing.
What is a brand identity, and why is it important?
Your “brand identity” refers to all the elements that go into communicating to your target audience who your company is. It’s everything from visuals — fonts, image, graphics and color choices, for instance — to the overall tone and words you choose to tell your story.
As to why having a brand identity matters, it boils down to consistency and authenticity. By presenting a cohesive look and quality message across your social media accounts, print ads, website and other marketing pieces, it helps make you recognizable to current and potential clients, makes your company more relatable and keeps your offerings top of mind.
Some companies worry putting out the “same look” time and again becomes boring. It’s important to remember that you, as part of the company, will see that branding far more often than your clients will. Reports actually indicate that 90% of today’s consumers prefer to buy from brands they feel are authentic1 — and that, if your brand’s story resonates with them, they’re 55% more likely to buy your product.2 In other words, when done the right way a solid brand identity does a lot of heavy lifting.
Steps toward a successful branding strategy.
Creating a brand identity for your own company can be incredibly difficult since you’re so close to the subject matter — and probably emotionally invested. We recommend bringing a professional branding agency such as when you bring Design At Work onboard to help guide you through the process, looks something like this:
- Getting to know you. We’ll will dig into everything from your company’s backstory to successes (and missed opportunities), future goals and existing marketing efforts. Expect lots of questions at this stage.
- Understanding the industry. Every line of work has its nuances, and as your branding agency, we want to know them. We’ll research current trends, factors affecting business and even what your competition is (and isn’t) doing, all to gauge the best way to reach your target audience.
- Creative development. Armed with that newfound knowledge, your creative team will develop a core message that resonates with your ideal client and gets to the heart of what drives your company. This is where the magic happens, and where your story and look fall into place. Expect a lot of collaboration as we work together to determine the best path forward.
- The big reveal. Rolling out a new look and brand messaging can be equal parts thrilling and terrifying. At the start, it’s all about letting existing clients know you’re the company they know and trust, just with a spiffy new look — and introducing yourself to a brand-new audience that might not have known about you before.
- Picking up steam. It takes time for a brand to take hold. In the weeks and months following your rollout, we’ll help you remain top of mind through branded marketing materials that make sense for your company — for instance, an updated website, regular emails, social media posts, ads and more.
How long does a brand identity last?
At Design At Work, we tell clients a solid branding campaign should last at least three to five years. It takes time for current and potential customers to truly take note of a brand, but once they do, you want to make sure you get as much as possible out of that branding strategy. That includes certain factors your company and your branding agency should consider when developing your brand.
- For the long haul. Few things are as frustrating and potentially damaging for a company as launching a branding campaign and immediately running out of options. When that happens, companies either repeatedly use the same elements or drop the campaign altogether (which defeats the purpose). Make sure whatever elements make up your look and messaging provide enough fodder for you to work with.
- Too trendy. Trends come and go pretty quickly these days. Incorporating the season’s “hot” color combo, popular slang or viral videos into your brand can make your company appear outdated and out of touch once those things fall out of fashion. (Remember, friends — longevity!)
- That looks familiar. A brand that looks too much like the competition can be worse than having no brand at all. Not only can it create confusion for customers but, under certain circumstances, it can result in costly cease-and-desist orders that throw all your hard work out the window. No other company is exactly like yours — and its branding shouldn’t be, either.
Need a Brand that Gets
Design At Work’s marketing experts can
make it happen.
- Brand Authenticity: Is It Important and How Can You Increase Your Brand’s Authenticity?, CrowdSpring
- The ROI of your Brand Story, MarketSmiths