The world of brand and branding is a complex one and we often get asked a lot of questions about what’s involved or where to even start in the branding process. The key thing to bare in mind is for every successful branding project we first need to gain an understanding of the problems you need to solve, or the challenges you foresee your business facing that you think will have an impact on you achieving your short and long-term objectives. These could be a number of things, such as; You’re losing market share in the category you compete in, you’re receiving a lot of negative feedback from customers, a new competitor has entered the market, you’ve merged, you have added more services or products to your portfolio, you are launching a business from scratch or need to increase revenues – just to name a few scenarios.

There is a myriad of things that are often brand-related issues and NOT marketing issues which is often the misconception when some clients engage us. If your brand is on point then your marketing will be effortless and will have greater impact, so understanding the role branding plays in a business will help you to achieve far greater success with your marketing.

Below are a few frequently asked questions we often get when discussing brand projects with our clients or prospects.

How much does it cost?
This question is probably the most difficult to answer. There’s never a one-size-fits-all approach with branding work that means we can simply package up our services into cost options. Every business we work with is unique in terms of what it does/offers, its size, the sector it operates in, the resources they have available and the challenges they want to solve, so we cost each project individually. The type of branding work we deliver is varied, we can work with our clients to deliver brand strategy, brand creation, a refresh, naming and implementation across all channels – this may include things like website design and build, video and launch campaigns in addition to formalising or refreshing a brand. This would be a full programme of work, that of course would cost a lot more than if we were just delivering brand strategy or responding to a creative brief to produce visual concepts for example.

We can talk you through the process and work with you to maximise your budget and deliver work that adds maximum value to your business.

What do I get at the end of a branding project?
This all depends on you, your budget, your resources and the challenges we are trying to solve. We tailor our output to the specific needs of our clients and the budget available. We use a tried and tested framework that we work through to deliver branding projects of every scale and we can support our clients from strategy through to full implementation across all channels, provide a strategy only or work from a supplied creative brief driven by you. Typically, the outputs most people associate with branding would include the visual corporate identity, messaging and various online and offline marketing assets of course, we do all of that of course, but branding is a much more complex landscape that we can support our clients through.

You may find this Frostbite useful as it talks about what you can expect to get at the end of a rebrand.

How do I engage the board and wider team with the branding opportunity?
Effective brand management has to start at the top. It needs to be directed and it needs a captain to steer the ship. The board, in particular, the CEO needs to drive it and also manage it, but first, they need to understand it and what it means. We work with leadership teams to define the brand and then help the board with senior management training to understand how to champion a brand on the inside and out. We often design a range of tools that help your management teams embed a brand into a business.

How effective can a workshop be to help me resolve some key strategic issues?
The majority of the workshops we have conducted have resulted in some key issues being identified and also resolved. However, the success of a workshop is depending on a lot of different factors and primarily it will depend on the nature of the problem at hand. How much time and resource that’s available and who wants to be a part of the workshop. In our experience, it is important to have at least one workshop with all (or majority) of the key stakeholders and decision-makers involved. This way buy-in is agreed upon earlier and approval for the next steps is easier making the process a whole lot smoother.

How do I bring the brand to life?
Brands are created from the inside of a business before any impact can be made on the outside. Engaging your staff with the branding process from the outset will help the business hugely. You want to help them understand what the brand means, to help them gain a better understanding of how they can bring the brand to life externally. We can help design a process to communicate the brand and obtain buy-in internally with your stakeholders. Engaging team leaders and senior management early on in the branding process will have massive benefits when instructing your staff on how to live and breathe the brand.

How do I bring staff together and involve them in a re-branding process?
Firstly, we need to know the challenges we are seeking to solve first in order to advise the best approach to staff involvement. If your brand challenge is about culture or hiring the right staff for example, then that’s a completely different ball game to looking at trying to increase market share for example. Specific people would be engaged for different scenarios and challenges. The bigger the business and what it does, the more complex things can become. When it comes to reviewing a brand and putting a plan in place, involving the key people in the direction of the brand from the outset is vital to your overall success. We would advise you on who we feel needs to be involved and why.

How do I fix an inefficient service or product portfolio?
It’s common for businesses over time to develop a myriad of products and services behaving like brands in their own right, this can cause massive confusion both internally and externally. It can also cost a business a lot more money trying to manage everything as inefficiencies creep in. We can help you to fully understand brand architecture and conduct a thorough review of your portfolio and give our recommendations on how to make your portfolio more efficient and more aligned commercially. We’ll produce a framework for creating products and services that may or may not require their own identity.

What should I call my business/brand/product or service?
Welcome to the complex world of brand! There are many things to note here, firstly, a brand cannot exist without a name and therefore the name is probably one of the most important factors of branding. You can review this guide to creating a brand name. Get the name wrong and the business can fail. It’s as simple as that.  . I have been naming businesses and brands for over 20 years and love nothing more than a naming conundrum. I can also advise on how to achieve consensus internally and on considerations in the complicated field of Trade Mark law.

What is the purpose of my business/brand?
Without a purpose there is no brand. Without a vision there is no brand. Without values there is no brand. Without an overarching big idea there’s no brand. We can help you to maximize opportunity by developing a clearly defined idea or set of ideals that can then inform the brand behaviours internally and externally.

It feels like we’re losing – what do we do?
Sometimes a drop in inquiries, sales performance or negative customer feedback can suggest there’s a problem with elements of your brand that are not quite hitting the mark. We can work through our brand auditing process in order to help you to understand what it is we need to do to fix the problems.

Will I get some brand guidelines and a website?
If that’s what you need us to deliver then we can provide that for you. First and foremost though, you need a brand strategy in place or a clear brief for us to work from. Then we can execute effective brand guidelines and/or design and build a website or any other form of communication that hits the mark from day dot. Before we embark on the journey of design and implementation it is vital for us to understand the problems we are trying to resolve, so we can solve them through our work.

We struggle to find the right people to work with us, can you help?
Recruitment and employer branding is something we can assist with and will guide you through the process. We work directly with HR and recruitment managers, marketing teams and head of operations to develop an employer effective brand that engages and attracts the right people to your business, saving you money on advertising recruitment fees in the longer run.

If you would like to learn more about our branding services and what’s involved feel free to contact the team on 01489 892 602