My advice to any person or company considering what their brand should include; forget about logos or design to begin with. Your brand is much bigger than just a logo. Your brand is what you represent.
You need to spend time, a lot more time than you would think, asking yourself some very basic questions about your proposition:
1. Who am I?
2. What do I have to offer which is different?
3. Who is my target audience?
4. How do I get my audience to engage with me?
Climb a mountain, go for a run, take a long walk. Do whatever you have to do to gain some clarity and objectivity about what you are trying to achieve. Then do it.
I have to admit that a lot of my opinions on how you should approach your brand proposition are inspired by Seth Godin’s approach in The Purple Cow. Having a daringly simple proposition, with single-minded determination to offer something different, is the basic ethos for our whole approach. The world is full of mediocrity. Don’t do it.
I had a lot of fun defining our branding. I firstly wanted to decide on a brand name which represented my ethos and approach, but also my goals and visions. After many attempts I settled on Bua Marketing. Not least because I love that it’s Irish, short, phonetic and says something about my ambition and drive.
Having branding that you’re proud of is very important. If you’re going to put your heart and soul into a company, then a good brand will make you want to stand tall.
I would always recommend getting a really good designer and letting them do their job. If they’re good enough, they will know best. Rob Boyle, a dear friend and professional partner-in-crime, then took my branding suggestions and totally ignored them. Thankfully.
On that note, these are some photos of my business cards, which get lots of oohs-and-aahs. Not that every brand has to be so colourful; just make sure it does you justice!
To wrap up, no matter what the size of the company, I believe that every communication and customer touchpoint should be branded and consistent. I therefore always recommend every company has guidelines around fonts, logo treatments etc which should be enforced by an internal brand guardian. Don’t go to all the trouble of getting lovely and expensive branding done and then stretch it or stick other nasty fonts in beside it.
It does matter. Honestly.