When undertaking a branding process for a new or just-acquired company, many Private Equity clients are desperate to create their new logo and consider it a project complete. Yes, the logo is critical. But branding is less about the actual logo, and more about the visual story and impact that logo demonstrates to the market. This is especially the case with companies that have had a brand and logo, but through a private equity acquisition or other M&S activity, need to quickly change course and differentiate themselves from their former affiliations. Branding agencies like mine have a process that includes messaging, positioning and brand meaning, all captured through a series of exercises. While the words matter, the attitude and meaning behind a brand is what differentiates it and sets it apart. Think about visual impact,
I read a blog post recently talking about word of sight replacing word of mouth. It was spot on. Today, what you see matters much more than what you read or what you hear. Think about when scrolling through your Facebook feed. Three paragraphs about a great Hawaii vacation barely gets a notice, but a great picture at sunset sipping a cocktail with a great caption is liked by everyone. Attentions spans have shrunk and we are all visual learners and thinkers.
As your brand ambassadors, every stakeholder on your team, from executive management to sales to support to the front desk needs to understand the meaning of the brand and why it is important. It is a branding agencies’ job to work with the team to distill that meaning and make sure that it comes to life through the branding exercise in all of your public facing communications. Think of the Facebook generation as your audience. You want them to stop, notice your brand, and give you a chance to tell them your story. Fewer words, more visual meaning is critical. Brand managers and marketers need to think about this and give their work a critical eye.
Unless you have created groundbreaking software, it is becoming more and more difficult to differentiate. The visual impact and meaning behind your brand are critical for success. The right branding agencies can help extract this from your story and give you a brand that can differentiate and ensure success as you grow your business in 2018. The writing is on the wall; make sure that your audience sees it.