Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Presenting a Unified Front

I won’t offer a lesson in branding here, but I would like to share the marketing and branding efforts of one of our clients as an example of presenting a unified front to the world.

The Cree Nation of Nemaska in Northern Quebec asked us to help them with their marketing materials. Specifically, we created a promotional brochure and oversized folder; designed a full colour plastic luggage tag as a ‘novelty’ item; designed a welcome sign for the roads leading into the community; and we’re in the process of designing a new website for them (Spring 2012).

What makes this different from the way other communities promote themselves? Nemaska is presenting a ‘unified front’ to the world, and this is a key element in effective branding.

The main design elements created for Nemaska are included in every one of the marketing pieces – print, sign, and web. So no matter which of these a potential visitor comes into contact with, the message they receive is the same.

The alternative? Half a dozen high quality, well produced marketing tools that look like they belong to half a dozen different businesses or communities.  

The consequences? Your brand is completely lost in the muddle of mixed messages, and you’ve paid a lot of money to create this confusion.

Our advice? 
Find one company that can do all of your branding. Don’t feel like you need to go to a web designer for your website, a print company for your brochures, a sign company for your signage, etc.  A good company that understands marketing and branding will coordinate all of this on your behalf.

Be involved – right from the beginning! This is about your product, your attraction, your community, your region. Your brand needs to reflect who you, are not who the design company thinks you are! A reputable company will help you to uncover your brand, not tell you what it needs to be.

Make sure you own the results. Your contract should stipulate that unless you are using stock photography, images, or text that pre-exist, everything produced for you needs to be owned by you.  You need to have the ability to modify and update your marketing pieces in the future without asking permission!

If you’d like to chat more about branding please send me a note! jason@cesclients.com

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