In order to properly answer this question, we must dispel a few myths about branding first.
Myth #1: Your brand is not your product.
Myth #2: Your brand is not your logo.
Myth #3: Branding is not marketing or advertising.
So what exactly is branding?
Branding is an authentic promise aligned with your company to be a promise delivery system.
The 4 pillars of a strong, lasting brand are:
1. Be authentic.
2. Be compelling.
3. Be distinctive.
4. Be excellent.
To identify, extract and refine the four pillars of a brand, a company must ask itself a few fundamental questions, such as, “Do you know who you are?” and “Do you know what your strategic positioning should be?” However, most companies (without a background in this stuff) don’t know where to begin. That’s where we come in.
As a brand consultancy, there are several packages / services that we offer depending on company size, budget and level of existing brand clarity, that will help companies identify “who they are”.
You certainly don’t want to move forward full steam developing a brand before you’ve asked yourself the important questions and gained clarity on your essence and vision.
For larger clients, with several key decision makers, we recommend a full day or half day branding workshop. These sessions are fun-filled days set with a casual tone where we group the team in a circle of chairs with no desks (to eliminate barriers and encourage the flow of ideas). We conduct a series of exercises, starting with a brief education session, moving into brainstorming sessions, small group exercises and worksheets to be filled out by each staff member individually. Post-workshop, we asses the data to find patterns that will direct the brand decisions visually, verbally and otherwise.
Shown above: Sneak peaks at a couple of our worksheets, including the Naming Worksheet and the Characteristic Spectrum.
For smaller companies that don’t have the budget or time for this kind of in-depth process, we start with an in person discovery session. In this meeting, we go through a series of questions to identify who you are as a company, what your strengths and weaknesses are, who your competitors are and what your current goals are, to name a few key points.
After we’ve gathered the essentials, we conduct additional research to help guide your brand look and feel. Several logo design options are explored internally amongst our team and refined, eliminated or expanded upon prior to presentation. Six to Ten initial directions are presented for review (though smaller packages are available with less options if budget is a primary driving force).
Below are a few pages from the initial presentation and the options explored that resulted in the final blue and black version.
We give our clients a 24-48 hour window to review the presentation and provide feedback. This time frame eliminates knee-jerk reactions and allows clients to share the logo options with key team members to get a consensus before responding. We allot for 2 rounds of changes, whether these be structural (a change to the icon / illustration) or a font or color change, we work with you to achieve a brand identity that reflects who you are as a company and relates to your target audience.
Once the logo is finalized, we bundle up a package of several different file types that can be used for print, web and digital communication. This package includes CMYK, RGB, PMS and Pantone versions of the logo, as well as Black & White variations.
In addition to Logo Design, Skybox Creative offers Company Naming, Tagline Writing, Branding Standards Guides (Basic or Extended), Stationery Package design (Business Cards, Letterhead and Envelope Design) and more. A Branding Standards Guide is a PDF booklet outlining brand specifications to ensure consistency for internal and external communication. Every major brand has a Standards Guide, this document is typically 3-50+ pages and outlines usage details such as minimum size requirements, acceptable reversed out treatments (how it should look on a colored background), font families, colors and more. We recommend a minimum of 3-5 pages to identify key branding standards. Each package we offer is custom tailored to fit the client’s needs and budget.
From logo design to supporting branding materials and defining standards, Skybox Creative can elevate your brand to new heights. We specialize in both the development of new brands as well as the revitalization of existing brands (rebranding), to view samples of our work, please visit our branding portfolio.
Our Account Managers love to help… If you have any questions or to get a quote on your upcoming branding project, get in touch with us today! firstname.lastname@example.org or call (619) 381-3825