20 / 02 / 15

Apologies for the radio silence these last couple of weeks but normal service is now (almost) resumed!

The pressure had been on - all hands to the pumps as we went through a recruitment process to replace our crucial Front-end Developer. I’m pleased to say that the process produced some excellent candidates; giving me a very difficult decision to make. The outcome however, is that we’ve successfully recruited a new member to the team who’ll join us next month.

During this busy period, the priority was not not only getting the projects out on time but ensuring that we provide the same level of quality and service our clients expect from us. Service is everything. Promises are made, contracts drawn up and brand reputation is based on these promises being fulfilled.

This is what the brand is all about. The word brand though can be confusing and can mean different things to different people. Let’s ask the question, in the context of a design agency: What exactly is a brand?

Brand Promise

At the heart of it all the brand is a promise to client. The brand promise incorporates not only the tangible things - the creative design and products, but also includes the feelings that client’s get when they interact with you and your services. Throughout there is a basic principle of being clear about what you stand for and being consistent in the delivery of this.

Brand Perceptions and Expectations

Brands are not controlled by the company. We wish! The reality is that it’s the way our client’s perceive the brand that defines us. We can promise all we want, but the only thing that matters is how accurately our promises are delivered. This is the ‘expectation’ of the Brand. Rightly the client has an expectation that promises will be kept and failure to meet this will result in negative perceptions. The strategy for under promising and over delivering is often a good one.

Brand Personality

Every brand has a persona. If we think of our brand as a person. Is it a likeable person, friendly, courteous, easy to get along with? Clients will evaluate and make a judgement before engaging your services (or not!). The visual brand image (the logo, packaging etc) will be a strong influencer in this mix and the elements must be cohesive.

In my view the brand must be clear, consistent, and believable to both your clients and most importantly to your employees. The staff represent the company and need to share the values and ethos if it’s to be genuine. With this thought in mind it neatly brings me round to our recent recruitment process. Good people are what make a successful company.

“You can’t teach employees to smile. They have to smile before you hire them.”

Arte Nathan