When crazy examples of re-branding hit the headlines, it’s tempting to dismiss or feel sceptical about the dark arts of corporate identity. But never underestimate the power of a brand to make or break a business.
Whether you like it or not, you and your organisation have a brand. It’s the kaleidoscope of how others see you and what they perceive about your values, standards, habits and beliefs.
Housing providers who work in settings where customers have little or no choice could also be forgiven for thinking that they don’t need to actively project or promote their brand. But this is just a recipe for negative customer perceptions and a poor reputation.
Being able to distil and get across who you are, what you do and how you do it is a vital part of modern business practice. In a marketplace awash with competing and overlapping information and stimuli, companies have to work harder than ever to get themselves noticed and spell out what makes them special.
This is where strong branding really pays off – investing the time to research and pin down the ‘DNA’ for your organisation, service or project, and finding creative ways to grab the attention of your desired audiences.
Many housing providers now have semi-independent and offshoot social enterprises (for example, training, maintenance and catering businesses). It’s vital to capture and signal the special nature of these ventures to make a positive of their community pedigree.
Some tips from our recent work to rebrand housing providers, their services and projects:
- Be bold – brands are about the future, so be prepared to let go of longstanding ideas and motifs when the time is right.
- Be authentic – a brand has to reflect the reality of how you work and your customers’ and partners’ direct experience of dealing with you. There’s no use trying to pretend you’re something you’re not.
- Be thorough – your brand should infuse and inform everything you do. So take the time and effort to roll out your brand across all your activity and channels.
An effective brand will get you noticed and position your business, service or project for success. Neglecting your brand or getting it wrong can undermine you and lead to wasted effort
Tell us how you rate your organisation’s brand? Time for a refresh?
We offer professional stakeholder perception studies, research and creative design to help you develop and implement a winning new brand identity. Contact Michelle Hallmark on 07545 610277.