The dangers of brand decay


Businesses evolve over time so, particularly when you work with outsourced content producers, it’s important to check regularly to see that your brand identity remains clear and coherent.

Businesses create many different types of content: newsletters, blog posts, social media updates, emails, product and service descriptions, case studies… And, especially in growing SMEs, this content is often produced in different places and by different people – freelance bloggers, bought-out admin and social media services, short-term, project-based collaborations with sector experts, etc. – making it very hard to be certain that everything is kept on brand.

To further complicate matters, businesses develop and evolve over time, and if you aren’t fully prepared with a plan and a strategy that you constantly monitor and review, you may find the business is rather different at year end from what it was when you started out.

Whatever the cause, what tends to happen is that there is a risk of the brand identity dispersing and weakening over time.

That’s why we sometimes recommend a brand appraisal for our customers, particularly those whose businesses have gone through rapid growth or expansion.

The appraisal is an opportunity to step back and clarify the brand, to establish a clear and consolidated message, voice and visual identity to be used across all platforms and by all partners and associates.

It’s a time to review the company message and vision, and check that all social media and other platforms have the necessary digital assets and that these are being used correctly and consistently by different team members in the many different situations they work in.

In small businesses, content is often produced in different places by different people.

An appraisal project usually includes production of an updated brand identity manual that can be distributed to internal and external staff to make sure they keep communications on brand. It may also include a stylescape, which combines logos, colours, fonts, iconography, moodboards, marketing materials, packaging and web and social media styles into a visual storyboard, allowing brand identity to be seen and understood at a glance.

If you are outsourcing your content and communications, or working with a number of partners, or if you simply think that your business has moved on and evolved from your original vision, it may be time for a brand appraisal.

Design is more than just a few tricks to the eye. It's a few tricks to the brain.
― Neville Brody

Why not drop us an email or give us a call to see how we can help you refocus your brand image and get your business communications back on track?