One of my mantras is about the importance of co-ordinating your brand message and activities, and it’s an issue that comes up regularly in conversations both with clients and more generally with people interested in how the business world works.
The reason, I suspect, is that it’s not quite as easy a deliverable as it might appear.
Co-ordination is not just about consistency in terms of how you use logos and colours, the way you treat clients, the tone of your communications or the causes you support – though these are important and can be easily derailed if people inhouse think it might be fun to design a flyer their way.
Co-ordination is about selecting the right mix of activities at the right time to build momentum and make an impact in the right places. It also means not pursuing ideas that might look great in isolation but don’t add overall value or, more particularly, don’t sit with the brand.
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To make the right decisions you must have absolute clarity about what you want your brand to be, and have documented that for mandatory consideration by all your team. But it actually starts a step earlier, during the brand development phase.
Your desired brand image obviously must be realistic, taking account of the factors that will always be a part of your viable business and what makes it tick, but it all should take account of how you would most like to build that image. If sponsoring the arts appeals, for example, think carefully about what kind of events sit well with your image, or what sort of image sits well with the events with which you’d like to be associated.
Related Article: You’ve sponsored an event, now get active
Sponsorship is a good example of how you must be willing and able to maximise the benefits by co-ordinating your activities. During the sponsorship period, your marketing and messaging needs to tie you in with this sponsorship and the nature of the event. You can achieve a lot if that link is real and you are comfortable with it, but a misfit could backfire. Don’t sponsor against brand.
Getting this right is easier if you’ve got a brand manager in the team. If not, at the very least branding should be a recurring agenda item for management.
Have any questions regarding your brands or how to co-ordinate your brand activities? Feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org