A brand is not just a logo. And despite the fact that we make a living making logos (etc) we will be the first to tell you that. Your brand is the total experience your customers have with you, your staff and your business. It's not uncommon to rush towards creating a logo but to establish a brand, you need to know what your key messages are and communicate them often and simply. Yes a logo can form part of that communication (and should compliment and not detract from your key message). But it is a small thread in the tapestry your company, business or organisation is weaving.
We've previously owned an iconic boutique bookstore in Remuera (it had been there for 25+ years and we were able to keep it alive for another decade as it's still going now), as well as in Epsom and an outlet store in Onehunga. I (Shayna) have been freelancing as a graphic designer for a few years with about 4 million side projects on the go (an online store being one) and after seasons in the food manufacturing industry and in telecommunications, both with client management roles, Aaron has more recently been the Sales Manager of a chain of 15 retail stores with online shopping and an email list of about 30,000. So from small to biggish in scale we have a bunch of experience with business at different levels.
Repeatable just seemed to fit with a whole lot of what we've been doing and what our values are. We believe in repetition when it comes to communicating with your clients (know what your key messages are and communicate them often and simply). We believe in repeating past successes and learning and building from them. We believe in (repeatable) systems you can put in place to simplify life and business so you are not reinventing the wheel. And we believe in organic growth where people want to talk about (repeat) doing business with you because you are so good. We strive to meet those expectations for our customers, and look for ways to help them do the same for theirs.
"People don't buy what you DO they buy WHY you do it"
Whether you are a not-for-profit, an organisation, a club, a self-employed tradesperson, or the director of a company the key question is: What value do I have to give?
You first need to know and understand who "you" (you or the business) are and what you stand for. How much value can you provide for others? When you focus on teaching, sharing and connecting this you are building your brand. The visual branding can always come later. People want to work with you because they value what you have to share or give, not because you have a pretty letterhead.
Of equal importance is knowing who you are speaking to. Understanding them. Knowing what makes them tick and what they will respond to. In this the visual stuff can work really well in your favour. Here's where your branding can work for you. By speaking the language of those you seek to serve.
If you don't understand the people you're speaking to, it's going to be difficult to connect with them. By being authentic and producing consistently, people will take notice of you and associate you with your chosen expertise.
Here's some more food for thought...
Quote from 'What Is Design Culture'
"In a healthy design culture, design is applied not only to the product or service an organisation produces, but also to the organisation itself. Seemingly small details - the lighting, the communication tools, the placement of the coffee machines - are thoughtfully considered. To paraphrase Conway's Law, products tend to reflect the structure and character of the organisations that produce them. So, a well-designed organisation will result in well-designed products and services."