The importance of branding

It’s tough out there, despite the upturn in the economies fortunes, aided and abetted by a government with an eye on the next election, clients are looking at every cost closely.

It’s part of our job to convince potential new clients of the benefits of good design, the positive impact it can have on their business and the value we offer. Easy to say of course…but wheres the evidence that it does?

Ok, heres an example.

The background to the Blue Otter Wines project is a wine shop that here in the studio we used from time to time – not everyday I hasten to add!. When we visited, trading often seemed slow, and the store looked and felt unloved. In fact it was unloved. the owner manager, whilst an enthusiastic wine merchant, wasn’t keen on his store either, and if the owner didn’t love his store, why would anyone come in, browse and purchase?

The existing fascia and ‘brand’ design failed to convey the market position or anything unique or appealing about the store. The wines stocked are at a price point of around £8 to £85, so targeted to a relatively affluent and knowledgable customer base. Our feeling was that the existing design was in fact damaging trade. We communicated this to the owner and finally, after many conversations, we were commissioned to create a new brand, website and interior design.

One of our first challenges was to look at the actual otter character. When you do some investigation you’ll find that in reality, they’re not typically attractive and in may respects difficult to make appealing in this context, which is what we were looking for. Further research led us the characters from Wind in the Willows, English, slightly maverick, cheeky but loveable. Our in-house skills extend to being able to draw and so we began to develop a human/animal interpretation of ‘our’ Otter. We also began to work through colour pallet options and typographic styles. What we gradually developed was a unique personality, both of the otter character, and also the typographic styles, colours and layout. It’s this combination of elements, much like a human face, that gives a brand it’s identity. It’s the face that attracts and defines what a brand is and how it interacts with its target audience. Even the owner now feels proud of his store!

The result? A more attractive forward facing brand. Both inviting, warm, and approachable and an upturn in footfall and sales of 40%. We hadn’t made any changes to the selling part of the business itself other than by creating a brand presence that people responded to rather than ignoring or failing to be engaged by. This is what we love to do; taking a business and moving the perception of it from one place, to another with a positive financial benefit. And even the owner now feels proud of his store!

If you’d like to discuss how we can make an impact on your business, call us today.

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