Finding the right top branding agency for your organization is not an easy task. In fact, it can be quite stressful. One thing we’ve learned as a top branding firm is our clients are often hesitant to bring on an outside agency in the first place. Do they need a new or refreshed brand, and do they have budget set aside for the project? And do they have the energy and commitment it takes to undertake a brand refresh? Justifying the ROI to the executive team can be a heavy lift.
Once they’ve crossed that hurdle, agreeing on the right firm is a major decision. Shifting work on something as integral to an organization as its brand brings with it the fear of losing control to an outside agency that’s not part of the family. Key to making the case for a top branding agency is recognizing that a firm with the right experience and creativity will help your business grow, and can be one of the most important investments you make.
To make it less stressful, and to make sure every organization is getting what they need in a top branding agency, we’ve crafted our top five criteria for selecting the best partner for a new brand:
- Check Out the Creative. Make sure you take a close look at the creative examples on the agency’s website. First, do you like them? Second, are they good? Third, can you envision any of them working well with your brand? And fourth, do they show a wide variety of creative styles and approaches? If the answer is yes to each of these, it might be the right fit.
- Consistency. A top branding agency recognizes the importance of consistency to your brand. Make sure you see examples of client work beyond the mood board or website. Look at the collateral, signage, typography, social media, and even email templates to see if the work is consistent in both quality and tone.
- Brand Management. A top branding agency isn’t valuable only on the one project but will be with you for the long-term. That means that as your brand grows and evolves, it lessens the risk of diluting it as new ideas are explored and boundaries pushed. Ask the agency to see examples of brand style guides it has produced, and ask their creative director to discuss the strategy for launching the brand internally and enforcing it across a large organization.
- Industry Insights. Top branding agencies work across a variety of industries and keep on top of trends and styles across many verticals. Don’t be shy in asking for their industry insights to make sure they are current with what’s happening in the market.
- Creating a Vision and Sticking to it. A top branding agency has the expertise and creativity needed to develop a comprehensive brand that is consistent and tells a compelling story. It takes lots of work to develop that skill and requires significant know-how and ability to both see the vision and execute on that vision. The right firm recognizes the intricacies of taking a brand from concept to completion at different stages in their client’s business life-cycle. That skill – to see the big picture of your organization and help you bring your brand to life – is critical and valuable. Ask for their vision of the big picture specific to your organization. It doesn’t have to be identical to what you want, but it should be in-depth and give you the confidence that you’ve found the right partner