There are many beliefs on what branding is and isn’t. Since this is my company, I’ll lead the approach of this document.
Muhtar Kent, CEO Cola-Cola has said, “…a brand is a promise…”. Amir Kassaei, CCO of DDB agency has said, “A Brand is not a product or a promise or a feeling. It's the sum of all the experiences you have with a company.”
There you go; it’s a promise; and it’s not. Quite frankly, I think they say the same thing; what is it I can count on about your company, time after time after time after…? From the color of your logo to the way you’ve decided to greet customers, what can I count on?
In his book the “E-Myth Revisited” author Michael Berger encourages us (in so many words) to “franchise” our business. That is, what can we do to ensure the exact same customer experience every single time anyone related to our business touches someone?
Too many people think a brand is the logo. That makes sense if you think of branding as it relates to cattle; putting a my brand on something says it’s mine. Good start, but too many people jump to logo creation before they even decide what their product or service may be. Others jump to a website. I NEED a website and they jump to building a site.
Somewhere between your napkin idea and your presence in the world needs to be considerable time spent on your brand. In my words; how is it (your brand) going to talk? Is it brash? Warm? Is it edgy, comfy or something else altogether? What does your brand taste like? How does it react to… change, bad news, etc.? I know these questions seem to push the reality envelope, but most often we know the answers to these questions. The real question then becomes how we translate that message into everything we do- including your logo and website and brochures and package design and exterior signage and trade-show graphics and…well, everything including the text used to describe everything we’ve just discussed.
This questionnaire is the results of over 10 years in the business. This is officially version 6. I want to be sure the brand is right before we design anything else. And that’s the point. I am pleased that you’ve taken the opportunity to utilize this free tool. Feel free to pass it along to friends, family, or business associates! If this helps you with your current web master, great! If not, call me. I'm ready to help!
The original purpose of the first version of this questionnaire was to eliminate nearly five hours of question/answer I used to bill clients for. While a good use of time, many questions weren’t answered well because it was done “on the fly”. This form is great because you can just type and complete it. But the older versions were just paper- designed to sit around for a few days, picked up edited, put down again till later. So, if you'd like, print this off and complete it 'off line' then come back to type in your answers.
Use this questionnaire for having a “conversation with yourself.” While I use this document to facilitate conversations with clients, its first usage is to allow you the time and space to mull over these questions. Some questions are designed to force you to look at your brand from an objective manner. Many are conceptual; don’t try to think of the “right” answer. There may not be one!
Finally, there is a lot of industry jargon and acronyms within. If you're not "ReCalibranding", but starting from scratch, don't stress. Just leave blank anything you wish- I've really only got a few questions that are required. There's plenty of time for us to discuss and get clarity.
ReCaliBrand is my company. Since 1999, I've helped clients "figure out" their branding and marketing presence. From brand development to marketing materials (including websites) to helping them manage crisis communications, I'm personal, available, and effective- I get results. ReCalibrand.com Stop by!
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