How to Create a Great Branding Brief
If you’ve never heard of a brand brief, don’t sweat it, you’re not alone. A branding brief is an internal document that is representative of your organization and its likeness. Another way of thinking about it is to picture this document as the organization’s most fundamental principles, which will guide all of the company’s branding efforts with a clear direction and intent.
Even though your branding services will do the heavy lifting in formulating your brand, it is essential to understand certain functions of a business, especially as it pertains to branding, with the branding brief being chief among the most crucial of those components. By formulating a solid creative brief, you are laying down the bedrock principles to base your branding design on and boost the entire branding process. With this document, you will more readily foster solid relationships with your brand design agency partner.
How Crucial Is A Brand Brief?
The most well-established and most strong brands set forth their core values as the pillars on top of their brand identity. These are the base elements of a brand, and everything the builds from them reflects what the brand represents and stands for. Therefore, it should not be surprising that findings indicate that upwards of 60% of consumers relate to specific brands and establish loyalty to them because they share the same values as the brand.
A brand brief is, therefore, a document that should address all critical aspects of an organization. This includes questions about the nature and purpose of a business, its future goals, personality, and what distinguishes it from everyone else in its niche.
There are several crucial reasons for every company to develop, use, and perpetually keep up to date a brand brief:
● New employees learning about a company should utilize the brand brief to get an idea of the company they will now represent. This gives the newcomers a clear idea of what the company stands for and how the organization wishes to be represented.
● For employees of a company, the brand brief lays out a value-based roadmap. It provides a meaningful direction of what the company stands for, but it also addresses the meaning behind the business, which in turn helps to achieve both productivity and consistency. This is especially pertinent when an employee is unsure of how to respond to a client. The brand brief can be easily referred to correctly formulate the answers consistent with the representation of the brand.
● Executives can use the creative brief to communicate their vision for the brand in text, cementing it as the guide for envisioning the brand.
● The brand brief is the root from which the branches of other brand guidelines stem. These are typically more detailed guides that include information about the brand’s design criteria, personality, imagery, narrative, and more.
But how does a large firm ensure that all of its employees are on the same page regarding brand messaging? Confusion and variance can be greatly alleviated by introducing the brand brief to all new employees during their orientation. The brand brief might be a set of core company values, but the brief can also undergo certain adjustments as the world changes. It is, in a sense, a living document that can evolve or alter with the times or market conditions.
Regardless of the medium customers use to interact with the organization and no matter who they speak to while doing so, the organization can be assured of the brand’s representation when every employee is aware of the principles outlined in the brand brief. This consistency is more important than ever, mainly since 60% of millennial customers (one of the largest generations in the consumer market) hinge their brand loyalty on consistency from a brand regardless of the method they use to interact with it.
What Makes A Great Brand Brief?
Every brand brief will be different, but certain elements are included in every variation:
What is the brand’s image, and what future goals does it aspire to accomplish?
While the image says what the company seeks to do, the mission speaks to its plans to attain these accomplishments.
The Big Idea
This is commonly regarded as the company’s catchphrase, mantra, or tagline. It indicates a particular action that adopts the role being the brand’s theme (ex: Nike’s “Just Do It”)
These are the primary values that a brand stands for. Each core value is best communicated by utilizing thought-provoking questions such as “What I recommend this brand to a loved one?” to represent the value of outstanding customer service. Ultimately, it is a tool for the brand’s employees to answer the critical questions about the brand while basing these answers on the company’s value system.
A brand promises a customer a type of verbal contract, which, once put forth, should and cannot be broken. When it is, customers are quick to lose their trust and turn away.
Voice, Tone, And imagery
This speaks to how your brand would sound and how it would portray itself if it were a person.
The aspect of a brand brief that, more than any other, will vary from company to company because every company’s culture will be comprised of a different cultural construct. The brief should summarize anywhere from 5 to 7 cultural sayings representing a brand, summing them up in a sentence or two if possible.
What makes a particular brand stand out from its competitors? This point is not about your product or service features but rather the intangibles offered by your brand that distinguish you from the rest.
Crucial Market And Target Audience
Who does the brand primarily cater to, and how does it hope to grow to reach more significant audience numbers.
Who are the brand’s competitors in their industry or their niche. This one should be specific and broken down more granularly if the company provides multiple services or sells various products.
Here are a few more critical tips for the formulation of an intense brand brief:
Write Down Ideas
When we connect to a brand, we do it on a subconscious level far too often. We rarely think about what indeed draws and connects us to a brand, and not surprisingly, this is because realizing the actual connection is challenging. It helps to write down your logo design brief to serve as a starting point. Once you truly understand your brand vision and figure out what you are looking to achieve, you can detail it in the brand brief.
Keep Customers At The Forefront
Build an image of your ideal customer. What are the problems they have that require solutions? What type of product or service are they after? Why would they want to choose your business instead of competitors? This helps to turn the perspective of observing a brand from the organization’s side and to view it as a client would.
Get Staff Input
A group that can most adequately speak to a brand is the organization’s staff, which the brand represents. Their opinions and contributions can offer invaluable insight into the representation of the brand. Indeed, the team would not openly share their views about a company’s logo, for instance. Still, if prompted with the explanation of why they are being asked about it, they may be able to contribute their take on the matter, offering some potentially game-changing advice.
Every aspect of a brand identity should link back to the core principles outlined in the branding brief. This will be a guiding hand for all of the principles that a brand uses in the production and marketing of its products.
Your brand agency partner will assist you in making the best decisions on this front, but you will be an integral part of the branding process. If some of the choices are not clear, it is essential to speak up and ask questions. Your feedback will be one of the most pivotal aspects of what the branding company will use to put together your vision and build it into a solid brand that will stand the test of time.
Thanks for reading!
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