The goal of all businesses should be to increase customer awareness of their products or services – the way to achieve this is to ensure that potential customers are not only aware of their brand, but also instantly recognize it, engage with it and hopefully recommend it, particularly when those products or services on offer are similar to those of ones competitors. The objective of a branding program is to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers.
The development of a brand identity is much broader than the creation of a brandmark or logo. It involves the development a visual strategy that can be successfully applied to a company’s marketing tools, so ensuring the effective communication of specific advantages and benefits to the marketplace.
Branding is a strategic process. It may initially involve the development of a unique name for a product or business, followed by the all-important development of an identity (logo, wordmark or brandmark),which should have retention value, appeal to the target audience (potential customers) and… stand the test of time.
Identifying the target market is critical to achieving the goals of a branding program. What type of customers are you trying to attract, as the success of your company’s branding efforts will rely on the customers you are pursuing? A good example of a highly successful branding program is Bunnings Warehouse, a national large format hardware retailer with stores across Australia and New Zealand. When REB Design was engaged to rebrand the company, the Bunnings focus was skewed to tradespeople. REB Design re-designed the wordmark (logo), re-badged the retail stores, and developed a suite of new colourways and graphics for store interiors and exteriors that would appeal to a broader consumer base, which included females. The company became a runaway success in the DIY sector.
Creating a company logo that ticks all the boxes requires the design company having a clear understanding of everything from the products or services your company may provide as well as its internal beliefs and goals. If designed with vision and knowledge, it will provide the means to establish a noticeable point of difference in the marketplace, particularly when the products or services on offer are similar to those of your competitors.
Developing a brand is a long-term investment, so underscoring the need a to develop a unique identity (logo) is vital. Ideas should be researched to ensure that they do not infringe on another company’s brand and once an idea is settled upon, it should be registered (trademarked) legally to protect your company’s name from imposters and possible customer confusion. Remember, your brand will develop worth, so protecting your intellectual property is imperative.
A branding program should spearhead a real change in the visual brand culture and tone of voice of a revitalized enterprise or product packaging. But what are ‘visual brand culture’ and ‘tone of voice’? Quite simply they are the terms used to describe the consistent use of colourways, typographic fonts, style of photographic imagery and, the tone of the writing style used in promotional material and advertising, be it in print or online. Depending on the size of an organization being re-branded, there may also be a requirement to develop comprehensive guidelines for consistent brand identity management across a range of media, including marketing material, website, packaging, advertising, signage and exhibition, all of which needs to sit comfortably under the new brand identity.
REB Design has managed numerous other branding programs over the past 20 years that still exist and have become synonymous with success at varying levels. They include branding and gourmet packaging for New Norcia Bakeries (an artisan bakery) and 3drops (a Mount Barker based boutique wine and olive oil producer), re-branding and communication material for Hawaiian (a property group, which owns and manages an extensive Australia-wide commercial, retail and hospitality portfolio) and The Perth Mint Australia (internationally renowned for its minted products and its precious metal depository), and an extensive ‘green-field’ branding program for Wesbeam (a producer and supplier of laminated veneer lumber in the Australian market).