A powerful brand is far more than a cool looking logo. Anyone with a computer and a bit of experience can make a decent looking design, but where the magic lies is in being able to create a brand that people have a deep emotional connection to the moment they see it. To do this, your brand has to be far more than just a cool looking mark.
Here are 5 simple steps that help us create powerful brands:
1) We work for brands that we believe in and with people that we love to do business with. Great work comes easy when you are having fun. And we only take on projects that we believe that we are the best in the world at. If we don’t think that we will be able to do a great job of it, we don’t take it on. We only win if our clients win.
2) We first develop a Brand Strategy. It’s here that we come to understand everything there is to know about the brand, it’s promise, tone of voice, goals, ect. We also come to fully understand their target market. What makes them happy, what brands they love, what are their hopes and dreams, etc. Knowing this prior to starting on their branding ensures that our work to come is guaranteed to spark an emotional connection. This brings trust and with trust comes brand loyalty.
3) Our first visual deliverable is a Mood Board. These boards are made up of a wide selection of found imagery that set the visual tone of the brand. Once every image is perfect and all of the key stakeholders are aligned the Mood Board becomes the visual foundation for the creative to come.
4) The next step is Brand Creation and it’s here where the brand comes to have a life of it’s own. It’s in this stage that we lock down the logo, colours, fonts, and overall look and feel of the brand. So the client can see the brand it’s full glory, prior to spending the farm on having everything produced, we create realistic, low resolution, 2D and 3D design mocks. This ensures that our creative works on all touch points.
5) Now that we have a logo and the overall look and feel of the brand has been locked down we start on the Brand Production. This involves photography, talent, purchasing needed stock imagery, creating high resolution files for all of the deliverables and working with the printers to make sure that the end deliverable it perfect.
A few other important tips:
– Always show the client what they ask for and show them what they really need.
– Deliver on time and on budget.
– Only present the client creative that you are proud of.
– Surround yourself with great people and great things will happen.
If you would like to hear more about who we are and how we can help build your company into a powerful brand please drop me a line. We would love to help your brand become our next international success story.
The trend setting lululemon manifesto design marks its 10th anniversary this month. The pop-culture icon still stands as one of the most highly used, loved, referenced, imitated and iconic pieces of creative work that FreeBird Agency team members have done. The FreeBird Agency contributors have made a lot of amazing work lately, but this classic still remains relevant today.
It’s been tweaked and morphed into a lot of different designs and ideas by various designers internationally over the last decade, but here is the 100% real deal, unedited, 2004 poster design in all its ORIGINAL glory: (more…)
There is craft beer and then there is seriously CRAFT beer. The latter half being exemplified by my wife and I running an extremely tiny nano brewery out of our house to supply the neighbourhood with the finest in homebrewed libations. West Coast Pale Ales, IPA, Belgian Farmhouse and Stout styles are the main specialties, but we’re certainly not limited to those. We use as many local (Pacific Northwest) and organic ingredients as we can.
Me being me, of course every brew has a custom label. The label designs are born out of artistic inspiration (post-punk poster art meets modern design) and necessity (cost effective black and white photocopies). To honour the DIY street poster tradition they are all wheat pasted on the bottles as well.
Having spent the last 20+ years running a creative agency I have had a lot of successful, and a few not so successful, client relationships. Time and time again the clients that are the most enjoyable to work with are the ones who consistently bring out the best work from our creative team. By reverse engineering my life as an agency executive I have been able to come up with a few simple tips that I believe will help you find an agency that’s right for you.
1) Find an agency who produces great work. An agency is only as good as it’s latest work so find a team who consistently produces amazing creative time and time again. For some agencies there can be a lot of turn over and the designers who produced their best work are long gone. Ask who is going to be working on your account and find out what projects they have worked on. Also ask who on their team will be working on your account and what kind of experience they have. It’s important that your agency is able to translate your brand’s vision into powerful creative that builds your brand and drives your sales time and time again. (more…)
Building a powerful brand is a lot like going on a road trip. By understanding where you want to go you can then plan out the steps needed to take you there.
The following is are a few of the key steps that we use when creating a new brand. It’s a process that we developed over the last 20+ years and it has proven time and time again to be a powerful tool when working with both young start ups as well as large international brands. When creating a powerful brand we spend about 20% of our overall time into the first 4 steps. You will find this time spent to be invaluable as it helps to crystallize your vision for the brand and it ensures that your end creative is on path to get you where you want to go.
1) Start by understanding and communicating your short and long term goals. Years ago when Chip Wilson started lululemon he told me that he wanted his yoga startup brand to be as big a Nike. This meant that we needed to take a much different approach to building his brand than we would have if his goal was to be just the top yoga company at the time. We still needed to be true to the yoga community, but the brand image that we created for lululemon needed to resonate with a much much broader target market than it would have otherwise. At FreeBird Agency we start every project by first coming to understand what our clients short and long term goals are and then we plan our path to achieve those goals accordingly. (more…)