Have you ever wondered how some companies build great reputations almost from day one? Or how they instantly hit the ground running with solid business plans, growth strategies and great advertising campaigns? The chances are that these companies have worked with a branding agency to develop their own image and map out exactly where they want to go and how they’re going to get there. If you haven’t worked with one before then a branding agency is not the kind of company you would approach for a one-off ad campaign, but if you’re looking for someone to help you either revamp your goals and strategies or to support you on long-term campaigns then they can make a huge difference to the way your company is perceived. They get to know the business inside out, learning how they have reached their current position and how a brand campaign can help take them forward or move them into a position where they genuinely want to be.
What is a branding agency?
There are a lot of companies who open their doors with the best made plans in the world, only to see them crumble within months because those plans weren’t built on solid foundations. By working with a branding agency you can provide a solid footing to put your best foot forward upon.
This means that you have the ability to go out and communicate with the right audience in the right place at the right time, delivering the kind of campaigns that your target audience is looking for based on solid and reliable data as you move towards tangible goals you set out at the beginning of the campaign rather than those you developed as you went along.
A branding agency will work on all kinds of projects from new company logos that are more fitting of the name and industry, to even renaming the business because the one it was founded with just doesn’t seem the right fit for the market.
They may also work on the production of graphics and marketing materials, leaflets and magazines, signs on the wall, the business cards you hand out at conferences, email templates and even your company brand guidelines which specify the tone you write in and the images used in blog posts and across the website so that everyone adheres to the new approach when producing content or sending out emails.
Growth tips for branding agencies
A lot of businesses across a lot of sectors have had to make big, bold business decisions over the last few months with many forced to close their doors forever. We recently wrote about how accountancy firms have actually grown and branding agencies fall into a similar category.
As company plans are being forced to change because of either job cuts or amending their strategies, branding agencies are being called in to help reposition them in the market and to clarify exactly where these companies are looking to go as they seek to bounce back.
This means that branding agencies are making plans of their own, whether that’s taking on new staff or working on new marketing campaigns to attract new clients. To find out exactly what they’re doing to grow we spoke to some leading branding agencies to get their top growth tips.
Customer retention should not be ignored… develop close relationships with your customers.
Rorie Devine, a successful author and the CEO and Founder of GRO.Team from London, believes that customer retention is every bit as important as customer acquisition at the moment.
“Customer retention should not be ignored during these tough times. Consider offering discounts, lowering your prices and offering more flexible pricing models,” he said.
In addition, he recommended that companies should “focus on visual content. Visual materials like infographics regarding precautions to protect yourself from coronavirus with your brand logo and company name on the visual can not only help customers to learn safety tips but also can boost your brand name and related brand searches. Written content is undoubtedly useful but today visual materials such as infographics or videos are great marketing tools.”
Finally, there was a nod towards email marketing. “A small message or email these days can actually develop close relationships with your customers. This is the golden time to bond with your customers and a positive, strong message asking how they have been holding up over the past few days could mean a lot.”
Have a compelling brand and proposition
It’s also of paramount importance that your own branding agency is an attractive proposition for your potential customers, because you give them the perception and belief that you’ll be able to work wonders for your clients. If you think about it, a branding agency that is poorly positioned in their own sector and fairly ‘bland’ on the face of things wouldn’t jump out at a prospect who is looking to transform the ways in which they are seen in their sector.
The Head of Design at digital growth agency ClientsFirst, Adam Taylor, told us that “the foundation for the growth of any business has to start with a compelling brand and proposition. If you don’t ‘look good’ and communicate well with your audience exactly how your services or products can help then you’re on the back foot already.”
Take stock and reposition your customers where they need to be NOW, not pre-COVID-19
Narcis Sauleda from branding, print and digital design agency Narcis, told us how COVID-19 has shaken a lot of businesses – and individuals – but it’s now time to take stock and position brands in the right places.
“March was pretty scary when I had all my projects stalled or cancelled. I invoiced zero pounds. Things have picked up since April, slowly but surely,” he said. “The challenge was to help businesses when they were all contracting and trying to save money. One thing I have noticed is that branding is taking real importance for businesses. They are trying to position or reposition themselves into new spaces, becoming more sustainable, social and ethical in the process.”
“I foresee a lot more work coming from businesses that need to digitise or renovate their sites to bring them up to specific standards in terms of things like e-commerce, memberships and subscriptions or courses.”