how to conceptualise and grow a
World-class and Sustainable Business Brand!
At Base of Branding we are specialised in boosting small, medium-sized and entrepreneurial companies and organisations by building brand awareness and increasing the target group’s desire to associate with the brand.
We do this in four steps, varying in duration from 3 to 12 months, depending on the scope of project:
Clarity and Strategy
Implementation & Activation
Training & Support
Clarity & Strategy for your
Return on investment
Branding is so much more than having a cool logo or flashy website. Sure, today you have to be able to engage your audience and “tell your story” but if you don’t tell it the right way, you’re left with nothing but a wasted opportunity. This is where our branding clarity and strategy comes into play:
We hold a clarity session with each and every single one of our new clients. It helps us to get an understanding of your organisation, and the goals and objectives of your branding project.
Before we can even begin to distinguish your aims vs objectives, we need to know where your business needs the most work. While you might have an idea of what you need to do already, a clarity session is a helpful first step to us and crucial for your return on investment.
The first thing we do is run through the branding questionnaire that we have created for our “brand new clients”. This helps us to gain clarity on your project at hand. Getting clear on the goals, strategy, and route to market in a roundtable session is a solid foundation for any project, which is why we place so much value on these sessions. It also allows us to touch on the marketplace and competitors that you are up against.
Towards the end of the session, once the business side of things is taken care of, we look over visual styles. This helps us to identify what type of brand identity might work for you, as well as what won’t.
We have ran clarity sessions in Qatar, Malaysia, Denmark, Italy, Spain and Canada! Either virtually, or in person, getting everyone seated for a round table discussion is vital!
Wrapping up a clarity session leaves everyone with a shared understanding of the task at hand, and defining the base for a realistic budget.
In this step we pin down what state your brand is currently in, who your customers are and what they’re looking for, what your competitors are doing, and so forth. Often companies won’t need our help with this, but we need to interview you and your team to assess your data, knowledge and insights. If your company already has a strong marketing team that is tracking this kind of data, or you are engaging the services of a market research company, you’ve got it covered already and we only need a copy of the reports and documentation.
You will need us to perform a brand analysis if you haven’t taken a hard look at your market and competition in a long time. Or you may be rebranding, perhaps after a merger, and need to take a step back and a deep breath to look at your own brand. In this situation it really helps immensely if you can get our outside eyes to see where things are at.
Conducting a market analysis
For us to guarantee ROI for your organisation we need to take a deep dive into your market to understand the threats and opportunities. We will also compare your brand and products to competitors and consider the gaps in a competitor’s approach to define what are they missing, what can you offer that will give you a competitive advantage and what sets you apart.
Defining the target audience
We have great experiences in defining the target group by using buyer persona, including demographic information such as age, gender, and income, psychographic information such as pain points and goals, ambitions, dreams, problems and how your product or service can meet or fix them. We call them customer avatars, and you will love it as it is much easier for you to communicate to an audience you know well, and even more important; your target group is more likely to trust your brand.
We will define your brand’s personality nailing it down to the keywords that best describe your brand’s character as if your brand was a person. When defining your brand’s personality we base it on how your brand wants to be perceived by the target audience and how it wants to make them feel.
Who is your brand as a person?
Is it helpful, clever, feisty, glamorous? Or strong, luxurious and rational? And how will these personality traits fully represent from here on out in all of its visual and verbal communications. We consider these characteristics (and many more) as the DNA of your brand, and it should assist in defining the company name, the brand identity design as well as the brand atmosphere.
What tone of voice will it have?
As the brand characteristics defines your brand’s personality, its tone of voice is how your brand communicates with the audience and influences how people perceive its messaging. This includes the words you choose and the order in which you put them and should be consistent and observed in every piece of content you deliver. Successfully defined and implemented tone of voice allows your brand to get recognised by your audience using text alone, even if they don’t see your logo or company’s name attached to the content piece you produce.
We lay out an annual marketing plan that helps you set your marketing on the right course to make your company’s business goals a reality. Think of it as a high-level plan that guides the direction of your team’s campaigns, goals, and growth. Without one, things can get messy — and it’s nearly impossible to put a number on the budget you will need to secure for the projects, hiring, and outsourcing you will encounter over the course of a year if you don’t have a plan.
There are variations to a marketing plan, depending on your industry and the goals of your marketing. To make the plan’s creation easier, we work in four steps:
1. Defining the mission
We already made the market analysis at this point, and now it is time to define the overall mission for your marketing efforts based on the market demand, the buyer personas and your competitive advantages.
2. Laying out the milestones
To help us laying out realistic milestones for the project we work by SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound) to ensure that we list sustainable and feasible campaigns only.
3. Tactics, media and budgeting
At this point, we have written down your mission and milestones, nailed down your target audience and competitive advantages. Now, we have to figure out what tactics will help you achieve your goals and define the right media and action tools to make it happen.
Before we can begin implementing any of the ideas that we have come up with in the steps above, we have to know your marketing budget. For example, your tactics might include social media advertising, product placement or exhibition. Thus while we are writing out the tactics, we will make sure to note an estimated budget. We can include the time it will take to complete each tactic in addition to the assets you might need to purchase.
Creative Production to make you
Stand out from the crowd
We are now crystal clear on expectations, timeline, strategy and deliverables and your brand is ready to be dressed for success which is the focal point in this second step. The deliverables that make up a business branding project can differ from business to business.
However, there are some key elements that tend to make up every brand identity design project. Let’s take a look:
We define the colours and tones that reinforces your brand’s personality and the qualities of the products and/or services you offers and meet your audience’s subconscious expectations.
When we look for the best typography for your brand’s logos, headlines and collaterals, we choose the font that convey feelings of exclusivity, intelligence, and style matching your brand characteristics.
A logo is the face of your brand and the most important foundation of all your marketing and media activities. The outcome of all our efforts developing your brand will come to its right at this point. We are now ready to visualise the DNA string of your brand in a top-notch logo reflecting the identity of your business using the chosen colours and typography.
Like all other brand elements – your brand imagery must reflect the brand characteristics and convey the intended emotion in the viewer. We will define the style and composition of your brand’s imagery to ensure recognition whether it is for billboards, social media, websites or print ads.
The brand look are clearly defined and the media and marketing channels carefully chosen. We are now able to design your media and collaterals. The process begins with obtaining quotations for the printed and online media and channels you need to launch your new brand and complete your marketing plan within budget. On your confirmation we will begin the design process.
Social media (whether it is personal or professional) is one of the biggest keys to targeting your customers or clients online. Viral videos or viral photos are shared in social media a million times. Some of the viral videos are taken from behind the scenes commercials, or back office scenes. These photos or videos tells a story. It also shows the human side of the brands online – and audiences loves it! We help you tell the stories in live or still pictures and in step 3 ( Implementation & Activation) streaming them to social media for sharing.
Last step in the creative production is to set up a complete guide to managing your brand. The document provides a complete description of your brand, its core strategies and its message platform. The completed blueprint serves as an ongoing guide to marketing, advertising and the strategic planning of your brand’s positioning.
Your brand blueprint and guidelines consists of four main categories:
- Purpose, responsibilities and permissions
- The brand story
- Philosophy and mission
- Key products and/ or services
- Customer strategy
- Customer personas (avatars)
- Typographic hierarchy, web
- Typographic hierarchy, print
- Colour Palette
- Colours for special printing
- Colours for web
Photo and image
- Photography style guide
- Photography positioning and framing
- A representative sample
- Packaging design
- Cover design
- Marketing collateral
- Exhibition, showroom
- Website & eCommerce
- Social media
Implementation and activation to
Bring your brand to life
Now your brand new look and media are designed and we start the production whether it is online, offline or both. We keep the online production “a secret” while working on your media until you give us the “go” to publish it on the day of launch. Your printed media will be managed by us at Base of Branding and samples quality controlled by our in-house experts before you receive the products by our worldwide courier service.
When all functions are agreed upon we will start building your website or eCommerce (web shop). If you are less experienced in managing a website we typically start up in a light version for you to get to know the system (we provide courses in this too), and then we can add more layers and functions as you get more confident managing the site.
The site will be set up online on a “secret” URL where you will be able to follow the progress and get to work in the system before you give us the “go” and we launch it on your official domain.
Web solutions provided by Base of Branding will include first year hosting, to ensure a secured implementation and activation with optimal support and the guidance needed.
We help you set up, name and style your social media channels, and if needed we also provide courses in social media management.
When the design is approved we hand over the files to you, ready for print so that you can use them for future reproduction. We always manage the first print production for quality control; making sure the colours are identical to your brand guidelines, securing the best quality of paper, coating techniques etc.
This is the point where the marketing plan is activated. We help set up templates for your newsletter and make sure to embed popup subscriptions and white papers or an ebook for download from your website. We can also assist you with press releases and product placement to boost the media coverage.
Depending on you needs; you manage the marketing or we do. We often manage the marketing first year, as the branding and campaigns will result in increased sales and you will be busy running your business.
Training and support that help you to
Keep your brand alive
Final step in the branding process is the training to get everyone on board. It is highly important to us that your new brand, strategy and media will be well managed and maintained. Your success is our success!
DIY courses or customised 1on1 sessions
When your media is online and everything is ready for you to take over, we offer various courses in media and marketing management. You are welcome to join the Base of Branding Academy and enrol the courses you need, or we can guide you by one-on-one sessions tailored to your needs.
Media management all-in-one solution
If you are busy and challenged on time, we can manage media and marketing for you. and/ or execute your marketing plan of actions. This solution is very popular to our entrepreneurial and small business clients, as it can be challenging managing both business and marketing activities when sales increases as a result of the campaigns.
Marketing monitoring also called marketing control is the process of monitoring the planned marketing actions as they proceed and adjusting where necessary. The marketing plan is the road map to your destination, and the control tells you if you are on the right route or if you have arrived at your destination
As the marketing plan moves along, we analyse the controls to determine how the plan’s actual performance compares to the projections. We make any changes that need to be made and adjust your marketing plan according to the changes.
The hotline service is for you who would like to DIY supported by us. This way you will work hands-on managing your marketing and media with the safety of us being your backbone for guidance and support until you fell comfortable managing on your own.