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Building a Brand: The Building Blocks of Success

Building a Brand

Building a Brand – The Building Blocks of Success

We all know that there is no recipe for success when it comes to business, especially when there str so many internal and external factors that can either make or break a business. We cannot prepare ourselves for all eventualities but there are a number of steps that can be taken to minimise risks. When we think of large successful businesses, the key players that come to mind are Coca Cola, McDonald’s and Apple. But what have all of these companies got in common that have made them so successful? Strong branding!

Branding is bandied about a lot when it comes to talking about successful businesses. You brand represents everything about your business and it resonates with your customers and prospects. With this in mind, it is vital that you get the basic building blocks right. But what are the building blocks that have enabled these brands to triumph over others?

Building Block #1: Clear Strategy

Before launching any brand, you have to ensure that you have established your brand foundation. Your brand foundation can be identified by answering a number of questions:

What are our core values? What do we believe in? How do we want our customers to perceive us? What is our core messaging and visual identity? What do we want our company to represent?

After answering all of these questions, you will have a clearer understanding of what you foundation strategy should be. These foundation principles could be a list or statement, or a selection of carefully selected words. They essentially need to be referenced by everyone who touches your brand internally, at every stage of any business decision making process.  Also, by understanding who your ideal customers are, you can ensure that you’re building a brand that aligns with their wants and needs.

Building Block #2: A Strong Logo

This is a given really but once you have established your foundation, you need to address your visual elements. Designing a logo is no easy task as there are so many elements to consider. To put it as simply as possible though, make it unique, make it adaptable, make it timeless but most of all, make it memorable.

This is the first element that the public will probably come into contact with so it needs to be striking.  Remember though, your logo will set the standard for all your marketing collateral so it needs to be adaptable. Logos need to translate across different mediums but still evoke the same meaning.

Building Block #3: Guidelines

Once you’ve established your identity and you have a logo to match it, you need to ensure your other visual elements match the image and personality of your brand. This is essential as it helps develop a sense of familiarity for your customers. Fonts and colours which will be heavily influenced by your logo will have a big impact of your branded marketing materials. You need to consider how your fonts and colours portray your brand.

For example, if your brand is corporate, then your font should be slick, easy to read and professional. No Comic Sans please. However, if your brand is a bit more fun, then you can use a font that is energetic and slightly more elaborate.

Research has shown that colour also plays a vital role in the perception of brands. This is why it is so important in understanding your ideal customer. If your customers are looking for a brand that is exciting, you may choose to use red in your marketing collateral. Or if you want to convey sophistication, you may look to use purple. There are no clear cut guidelines when it comes to colour but when it comes to choosing colours, you must test. You cannot know how your audience will respond to your colours in your content and layout without testing to determine which colour combinations work best.

Your guidelines will also cover elements such as writing guidelines, web design and print design.  Once you have a clear set of brand guidelines, as long as they have been clearly established, it should help everyone from your team to your suppliers designing your marketing material. Making sure everything is consistent and looking like it’s from the same company.

Building Block #4: Tone of Voice

Your tone of voice is not what you say, but how you say it. In relationship to branding, it embodies and expresses your personality and reflects the overarching foundation.  The words you use on your website and in your marketing collateral can define how people perceive your business.

When establishing your tone of voice, you need to think carefully about whom you are talking to. Do you want to appear casual and friendly or formal and sharp? Your tone of voice needs to be distinctive and recognisable. Carefully selected words can heavily influence customers and by picking a voice that fits your brand and culture can make you more memorable to customers.

Building Block #5: Consistency 

Consistency is key for your business and does a multitude of things four your brand. It can contribute to generating trust, attracting more customers and also creating a professional feel across the business. Ultimately, consistency contributes to brand recognition, so you need to make sure all your marketing elements and messaging is cohesive. Not only does this help strengthen your brand, but it also drives positive sentiment and trust in consumers. This ultimately leads to brand loyalty and lifelong customers.

In recent years, we have seen the power of branding with Apple. In the early stages they were able to establish an identity that meets their needs, and they have stuck with it. Changing the look or approach of the Apple brand could easily undermine the consumers’ understanding of who Apple are as a company. Apple consistently places a lower case “i” on new digital products – the iPhone, iPad, iPod, iWatch. This ensures that consumers can easily identify a new product as coming from Apple, even if they haven’t heard from them.

Building Block #6: Brand Centurion

Consistency is the key theme that runs throughout all of the points above and any brand manager will tell you how vital it is for a brand to succeed. One of the biggest tasks faced by brand managers though is keeping their marketing consistent. With Brand Centurion, many of the daily struggles are alleviated by providing organisations with one, easy-to-use, powerful asset management tool. Brand Centurion automates all the demanding creation and distribution jobs and ensures that all marketing collateral is consistent every single time.

Written by Liam Beauchamp for Burst Digital – 30/08/2016


If you’re interested in developing your brand, call us today and up your marketing game!

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Web-to-Print: The Must-Have for Multi-site Marketers

web-to-print: the must-have tool for multi-site marketers

You may have considered implementing an asset management tool on a number of occasions but not quite got round to it. You always seem find an excuse as to why now is not the right time – i.e. you don’t have the staff to implement the software, you don’t have the budget or maybe you already use Dropbox or other cloud storage tools so you don’t need an asset management tool. With their wealth of benefits though you are potentially missing out on an tool that for many successful marketing departments are indispensable.

There are basic asset management tools will essentially act as centralised repository in which business can efficiently store, organise, access and distribute a large number of marketing assets. Whilst they offer similar benefits to cloud storage, there are a number of asset management tools that can deliver so much more.

When producing large volumes of print marketing content on a regular basis and delivering it to different audiences across different stores,  adopting an asset management tool with web-to-print capabilities offers an array of added benefits.

Brand Uniformity

Your brand is your strongest asset as it represents your company identity and your corporate values so it is vital that this is maintained across all your business locations. Your brand needs to communicate the same message across all channels because a lack of uniformity can weaken your brand. Within large, multi-site organisations, there will be more than one person responsible for branding and if tight controls aren’t in place, branding mistakes will be made. A web-to-print solution improves consistency across all marketing as design elements can be locked down meaning they can’t be changed. This allows you to have tighter control over your marketing assets.

Increased Efficiency

Ordering printed marketing material can be a laborious task. If you have to call multiple vendors, request quotes, design and send files, wait for proofs, make corrections, and wait for your products to arrive all slow down the time to market. This is valuable time that could be spent on more important tasks. A web-to-print solution can eliminate many of these tasks and help avoid costly mistakes. Costs are negotiated ahead of time, approved templates are uploaded onto a web based dashboard so you have instant access, and only agreed elements can be edited prior to printing. The order process can take a matter of minutes – instead of days.

Centralised Purchasing

If you have numerous people ordering printed stationery from numerous vendors, costs can very quickly spiral out of control. It can also become difficult to track what you are spending. With an effective web-to-print solution, you can manage budgets by seeing exactly who is ordering what before approving the order. By using a single vendor, you have tighter controls over your budgets.

Personalised Marketing

A massive 79% of people will act on direct mail if they feel like it is personal to them. Unfortunately though, many marketers are missing opportunities by concentrating their personalised marketing efforts online. With some web-to-print solutions, you can integrate and manage your CRM data to enable personalised marketing.  This means artwork can be pre-populated with personalised information so your direct mail piece makes a greater impact.

Digital Repository

As well as storing print marketing assets, many web-to-print solutions can also be used as a store for digital assets including Facebook banners, email signatures, videos, PDF’s or photography. This makes it incredibly easy to share approved digital assets. This ensures that your teams are using the right version of the right asset ensuring overall brand consistency. And because web-to-print software works away from your internal IT software, you can rest assured that your files are safe.

Cost Saving

One of the biggest costs relating to the production of marketing assets is the use of a graphic designer. From the original designs, to re-edits – the cost can quickly accumulate. Even for the simple task of re-working of business cards can be a huge expense if you have to produce multiple versions for different people. With a web-to-print solution, you can upload pre-approved templates that allow you to customise only the agreed elements. This could include elements such as the name field, telephone number and email address of a business card. With simple drag-and-drop, this removes the need for a designer to artwork these jobs. This means your designers time can be better spent on the more important tasks.

Web Based

As mentioned, web-to-print software works away from your internal IT software. This means there is no software to download and it be accessed 24/7 on any device, anywhere in the world. This also removes the hassle of phone calls and emails to get a print run started – you can do it all from the portal.

Web-to-Print and Burst Digital

If web-to-print sounds like something that your company might benefit from Brand Centurion – the web-to-print portal from Burst Digital. We can work with you to ensure your branded marketing assets are consistent across your business locations.


Written by Liam Beauchamp for Burst Digital – 08/08/2016

Direct Marketing Facts & Statistics, CMO Council, 2015

https://www.cmocouncil.org/facts-stats-categories.php?view=all&category=direct-marketing