succesful-branding

Why Consistency Is Important To Successful Branding

Successful Branding is the key to differentiating yourself from your competition, you see if you don’t create a brand promise around the reality that you live up to, your brand promise will be pointless.

What Is a Brand Identity?

A common mistake most clients make is they think a logo is their brand identity. Branding is so much more than a logo and your stationary or website. A brand identity influences your customers’ experience,  it’s a way to differentiate yourself from your competition.

Social Media Trends to Make Your Brand Stand out in 2016

Are you looking to get tremendous results for your brand through social media this year?

Social media trends 2016

Social media is ever evolving as one of the biggest components for generating business sales and leads. It means that you need to come up with some plans that can stand you out from your competition.

Here is some tips.

Streaming Live Video Plays a Key Role

Video Streaming

Brands need to utilise live video streaming as a prominent option to connect with their customers and attract more customers.

Don’t get too concerned about knowledge because Periscope and Meerkat are apps that will let you do it easily.

Something to consider, consumers always trust a brand that has taken care about their customers and make every possible effort to fulfill their desires. We believe that streaming live video will bring you one stop closer to your targeted audience.

You can also use this option to share stories of your brand.

A Brand that Targets on Real-Time Engagement is Already Ahead

iPhone Engagement

When it comes to social media, consistency plays a major role, especially when people are spending 30% their time on social media.

Because this is a massive competition, if you are not listening to your chances properly, you will not be able to accomplish your targets.

So, keep your audience involved through constant interaction.

Have you ever thought that why giant brands like Coca-Cola or Starbucks are so successful on social media?

It’s simple. These brands are always active on social channels, and engage their audiences through a range of techniques. Such types of brands also respond quite efficiently which is yet another prominent reason behind their success.

So if you are expecting outstanding results from your social media, then get more focused towards real-time engagement.

 Collect Analysis for Decision Making

Data Analysis

Gone are the days when business decisions have been made on a ideal situation. Now with the fast advancement in technology, everything has changed.

If you want to create a social media strategy you have to gather facts and data to make a mature decision.

If you haven’t been collecting data analysis then it’s time for you to take it into consideration.

You don’t need to make any effort because there are plenty of data analysis tools available online.  We use Moz Analytics and SproutSocial.

 

Brands Should Focus More on Visual Content

Visual Content

Content (in text form) will no longer be enough to attract your customers. You really have to include video for making your content stand out more.

It’s a fact that social media platforms gets updated after every second with unlimited number of posts. So sometimes, it’s not possible for your’e user to read everything they come across.

Most of the times they will only consider reading a post that looks more appealing, and this is where video comes in.

It’s obvious that if you want to boost the visibility of your posts, make your content as appealing as possible through quality visuals.

Check out the following brands, they their audiences will get satisfied through visual content. Kate Spade New York and tHe Horse Footwear.

 

Customers Are Becoming You’re Ambassador

Customer is the ambassador

Satisfying your’e customer to make them your ambassador of your product is more important these days.

A potential customer usually conducts a research now before making their final decision. For this, they will ask other people about their experiences about your brand.

If you have already established a good relationship with your existing customers, they will certainly tell all their friends about it.

So, it is vital for you to satisfy your existing customers, so that they can become the real ambassadors of your brand.

New Publication Options Will Provide More Opportunities for Brands

Opportunities for Brands

Did you know Facebook has started to roll out a new Instant Article feature. We personally think this feature will be an amazing option for any brands, marketers and publishers and to convey their messages.

We live in such an informative age, which means it has become crucial for any brands to now educate their audience. Instant Article will be an appropriate feature for one of these purposes.

If you are targeting a more mature audience, then try LinkedIn’s new pulse features.

In summary, you now don’t need to miss any opportunity to win your audience, these publication features are quite useful tools that will keep you connected with your audience.

 

Smart phones Need to be Given Topmost Priority For Marketing

Smart Phone Stats

Browsing on your smart phone is becoming more and more the common way to be on the internet.

Do you know that the number of mobile-only internet users now exceeds desktop-only users?

If you are not using your smart phones correctly, then now is the time to think of it as the most powerful element for building up a social media marketing strategy for your brand.

It the sensible move because the majority of people now use smart phones to spend time using social media.

Because of this you will have to use appropriate size of images that look amazing on a smart phone. You may also have to re-structure your social content strategy accordingly to gain better results.

In Summary

Social media is emerging as one of the most appropriate platform for all types of brands. It is an ever-changing industry that requires you to be updated about the latest trends.

 

When Clients Ask for Discounts

I bought a couple of new jackets recently. One was from G-Star, another from Country Road. They were not cheap, but not unreasonably expensive. I paid the price the shop asked. What I didn’t do was haggle over the price with the shop owner.

As a professional design agency, we have fees. We are not cheap, but we are also not unreasonably expensive. And we always try to be transparent in our pricing. That means that we prefer not to waste my time on price negotiations.

Sometimes, clients contact us and say, “We’d love to hire you. But can we get a discount?”, or better yet “If you look after us now, we will give you more work as our business grows”.  We have found a great way to deal with these discount requests: I simply ask our customers, “Why?”

My usual reply also includes something like this, “Is there a specific reason you believe you are entitled to a discount?” Without my directly saying yes or no, I’ve bounced the question right back to the customer, forcing them to re-consider what they’re asking and to give them a chance to point out something that could be of value to us.

Some clients say they cannot afford our fees, so they’re hoping to get us at half our normal price. Sometimes, they even ask me to do my work for free (LOL). “It will be a great opportunity to present your work!” I hear. But this always just baffles me. I have never considered asking Country Road to sell me a jacket at half the price, or to just give it away for free: “Because it will be a great opportunity to show off your clothes!” Imagine if the world worked like that.

If I find a business too expensive, I wouldn’t have shopped with them. Instead, I would have checked out a cheaper imitation business. So, when faced with the discount question, my next move is to tell clients that I will happily refer them to other design agencies.

Sometimes, clients are so big they consider themselves too important, that the magnitude of their arrogance itself seems to qualify them for a discount. They say “You will be able to add our name to your list of clients!” (again, LOL).

Some clients just love haggling us. My problem with this attitude is that those clients assume that we are overpaid and with some negotiation, it should be possible to talk the fee down to a “proper” price.

Another possibility is that a client assumes that we are so desperately in need of a sale that we are willing to be underpaid, which seems like a lack of integrity on the side of the client. They sometimes say, “You probably have a special price for friends,” to which I might reply, “I have many friends and our fee is what they pay. I assume you want me to treat all my friends equally and fairly?”

We don’t say “no” to clients who ask us for a discount. We just ask “Why?” because it’s possible that they have a very good reason? It comes down to customising the value of the exchange.

 

 

The only time we would agree to give a discount is if we get something in return. In exchange for a discount you ask your client to give you something which is important or of value to you. Then you will find that your client stops and thinks about it for a minute, usually with a reply of ‘OK, we see you’re point’.

 

At the end of the day don’t sell yourself short. No one will value you. Set a fair price for your services.

Most of us set way too low a price. Put it a little higher than you would normally be inclined to do. The worst that can happen is someone will say no.

 

 

How To Write A Design Brief

design-brief

How does a client get the design they want? The perfect design you dream about in your head? … Writing a design brief is the answer.

Whether you are a designer or a client, an effective design brief is the most important factor in ensuring that a project is successful straight away.

This article will tell you how to write a design brief that will be both beneficial to the client and design agency.

This article will be based from the client’s perspective though.

1. What Is A Design Brief?

What is a design brief? A design brief is something that is critical to any design project as provides the designer with all the information needed to meet and exceed your expectations.

A design brief should focus on the results and outcomes of the design and the business objectives of the design project. It should not try to deal with the aesthetics of the design. That is the responsibility of the designer.

The design brief also allows the client to focus on exactly they want a designer to achieve before any work starts.

A good design brief will ensure that you get a high quality design that meets your requirements, providing you have chosen the right design agency.

2. How To Write A Design Brief

Answer these questions below and your design brief will be nearly finished… the rest will come from questions from the design agency after you submit the brief.

Answer the questions and remember, to provide as much detail as possible! Please this does not mean one line answers, the more you explain, the easier it is for the design agency.

What does your business do?

Be concise and clear 

  • What does your company / organisation do?
  • What is your company’s history?

What are the goals?

  • What are you trying to communicate and why?
  • What is the overall goal of the new design project?
  • Are you trying to sell products or raise awareness of your products / service?
  • How do you differ from your competitors?
  • Do you want to completely rebrand yourself, or are you updating your products / service?

Who is the target market?

  • What is your target market’s psychographics & demographics ie. age, gender, income, tastes, views, attitudes, employment, geography, lifestyle, trends, habits.

What content is needed?

The copy and pictures used in a design are crucial as the design itself and you should clearly state who is going to be providing the copy and pictures.  You may need to look into getting a professional copywriter / photographer – ask your design agency for some recommendations.

  • What copy is to be included in the design? And who is providing the copy?
  • What pictures / photographs / diagrams / infographics etc need to be used? And who is providing these?

What are the specs?

  • What size is the design going to be? i.e A4, A3, DL, etc.
  • Where is it going to be printed? Is it online, business cards, stationery, or signage on your car?
  • What other information should the designer know in regards to specifications?

Have you got something already in mind?

  • You should provide the design agency with some examples of what you feel to be effective or relevant to your design, even if it is from your main competitors (you can learn a lot from your competitors). This can help set a benchmark for your design agency.
  • Provide the design agency with things not to do. This will give the designer an idea of what to avoid and will avoid you being disappointed.

What Is Your Budget?

  • Providing the budget upfront allows the designers to know if the project is going to be worthwhile to complete.

What is the deadline?

  • Give the design agency a detailed schedule and set realistic deadlines for the completion of the work. You need to take into account the stages of the design project such as consultation, concept development, production and final delivery.

Rushing jobs helps no one and mistakes can be made if a job is pushed through without time to review.

And now a tip For The Design Agency

As a design agency it is important to have a template such as this to give to clients on your first meeting. By having a template ready, it shows them your’e professional and saves them (and you) a lot of time and money.

 

The importance of logo identity

logo-identity-adelaide

Why is a logo identity so important? Because we mostly choose the products we buy based on their perceived value rather than their real value.

Logos are all around us. Think clothes labels, running shoes, TVs, smart phones, computers. From the moment we wake to the moment we sleep, they’re an ever-present part of our every day routine.

The average person sees 15,000 advertisements, logos, and labels in a day.

Don’t believe it?

To illustrate the constant presence of logos in our lives, I decided to spend the first few minutes of a typical working day looking at all logos on the products I interact with, beginning with my morning alarm. They ranged to Apple logo on my iPhone, Kellogs logo on my cereal box, Channel 9 logo on the TV show I was watching, Toyota logo on my car, school logo entrance at my sons’ school, a variety of logos on shop fronts as I drove to work.

All these logos in only 2 hours from me being up already, that’s just a glimpse into my day, which is not to say that there weren’t plenty of other logos around at the time — on other food products, books and newspapers, billboards and my clothing.

A logoless company is a like a person without a face.

For years, we have needed and desired social identification. Think of a farmer who brands his cattle to mark his ownership, or the stonemason who proudly chisels his trademark.

When you close your eyes and picture McDonald’s, what do you see? Golden arches? For those products and services that have a strong logo identity, it’s the identity that people often think of first, rather than the product itself. Think of Apple, Nike, Coke and BMW. Chances are good that without even showing you their logos, you’d have a fairly good idea how they look. But also be, a huge marketing budget is necessary to achieve the recognition rates of such organisations, but it’s important to “put on your best face.”

So you see logo identity is vital to any business that wishes to succeed and be remembered. Can you really out a price on that?

Call Spiros at DesignLab to discuss how we can help better your logo identity.

The Importance of Letterhead design

Over the last couple of weeks we have talked about the importance of business stationery, and how business cards are such an essential part of selling your brand.  Today I want to discuss the importance of letterhead design.

Why your letterhead is important

Your Company logo

Your business has a logo for a reason. This logo will define and identify your brand, and will help your customers to recognise you. So by putting your business logo on your stationery you expose your brand and what it stands for, in turn giving you a far greater brand awareness in your industry and among your customers.

It backs up your brand

Every business wants its customers to know that it offers the best service or the most affordable products, then your letterhead therefore needs to reinforce your brand message.

If your brand is all about providing a professional, bespoke service (for example) then you should make sure that your letterhead reflects this, whether that’s with a clean design, or by colours and fonts. Once you’ve chosen the particular identifiers, make sure to stick to them across all of your business’ communication for consistency.

It shows legality and authority

Not only does your business letterhead present who you are, which helps to identify your brand; but it should also be used for all official documentation. It reinforces your brand’s authority and gives the remainder of the letter credibility.

What makes a good letterhead design?

letterhead-adelaide-graphic-design-1

Clean and simple

Your letterhead should be easy to read, so it’s important for it to be a clean and simple design. Your letterhead should consist of your logo and any contact details.

Contact details

It’s important that your customers can contact you by looking at your letterhead. This means ensure your contact details are relevant and up to date.

Two font rule

Now this is in the eye of the beholder, but we feel you shouldn’t use any more than two fonts in your letterhead design. Try to choose a font which reflects your logo. You may decide to use a specific typeface for all of your marketing communication.

Company colours

You should make sure that your letterhead contains any corporate colours from you logo. A business which sells items specifically related to food for example will likely opt for green and red, rather than purple, it’s simple logic.

Good examples of successful letterheads

Below is a look at some examples of what we think is successful letterhead designs. Just remember as long as you include the right information, and keep any design consistent with your brand’s identity, you can’t go wrong.

letterhead-adelaide-graphic-design-2

Simply in the shape of a comb, this works great for a barber shop.

letterhead-adelaide-graphic-design-3

Choosing a corporate colour must have been a bit of a no brainer with a name like Redbrick.

If you want to chat to DesignLab about how we can help with your business stationery in Adelaide, call Spiros 0n 0431 926 575.