The most defining campaign of 2020 isn’t or wasn’t really a campaign and certainly wasn’t a hack.  It was an implementation of the fundamentals of brand development. 

If you don’t have a brand in place then it could be considered a campaign when developing and implementing it.

Regardless of the semantics, this revelation is too important not to share. It is the fundamental marketing concept of brand development.

There are two different experiences we had as a company this year that solidified this as imperative and a defining moment of 2020. They showed us how necessary this is and solidified it as a marketing fundamental.

The first was our implementation of a brand development strategy during an E-commerce website redesign and development. 

As I lead our team through our design process of intention, goals, strategy, flow, and copy into the wireframing… I.e. what I call “the information architecture”.  

I realized that we didn’t have anything to say other than descriptions of the features and benefits of the product.

This was definitely a defining moment of 2020

We didn’t have a guideline for the fundamentals of building a brand.

I redirected our entire strategy, we created what is now our proprietary brand development formula and we implemented it. 

After a month of video conference calls and behind-the-scenes transcriptions and research, we went back to the information architecture.

The entire process was quick and easy. We had numerous statements, phrases, and ideas that describe the brand available to us.

We were able to identify multiple goals,

(sell product and build the brand), that this website would be able to accomplish.  The process of laying out the copy and wireframe was seamless.

After the project, I analyzed some of my colleagues’ classroom notes about web design.  It confirmed my theory. Little branding cheats are inserted into the design phase of digital marketing products. This keeps people from ever really learning what their well-developed brand is or could be.

Our second realization is relatively simple. We laid out our own company’s purpose and values, (the first stage of building a brand). Then we distributed it consistently on social media.

Our intern hiring process now allows us to repeatedly attract the brightest and best personalities. This happened when we showed the world why we are doing what we do.

Our conclusion of this entire experience has brought us to a deep understanding and definition of what a brand is and a foundation on how to build one.  Brand development is like building a franchise. Work on your business to do it, not in your business.

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