In the last post we mentioned all the different types of content a business creates: newsletters, blog posts, social media updates, emails, product and service descriptions, case studies…
Especially in small businesses, this content is often produced in different places by different people – freelance bloggers, bought-out admin and social media services, short-term project-based collaborations with sector experts – making it very hard to be certain that everything is kept on-brand.
Add to that the fact that businesses develop and evolve over time and that if you aren’t fully prepared with a plan and a strategy that you constantly monitor review you may find the business itself is rather different at year end from what it was when you started out.
Whatever the details, 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 for use 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 etc. and that these are being used correctly and consistently by different team members in the many different situations they work in.
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 – a visual summary of the brand – which combines logos, colours, fonts, iconography, moodboards, marketing materials, packaging, web and social media styles, etc. 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.
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?