In today’s competitive digital market place, branding is an important process to set your business and its products apart from your competition. But it’s also complex, in many cases requiring a thorough overhaul of your marketing and business strategy.
You don’t want to go through that process alone. So you begin to engage branding agency, hoping to find a partner that can help you rebrand and establish your identity in the market. But how can you find the right creative partner to help you through that complex process?
Here are 10 Questions to Ask Your Branding Agency that should set you on the right path.
1) What Can We Expect?
Above all, you need to be on the same page with your branding agency. That means setting expectations early, and knowing exactly what your partner-to-be considers a ‘rebranding’ process. If you’re looking to reinvent your brand identity, and all the agency offers is a logo redesign, you may want to look elsewhere.
2) Do You Specialize in Any Industry?
Next, you should gauge the understanding your agency has about your particular situation. Each industry comes with a different audience, who will have very different needs and wants when it comes to their brands of choice. Ideally, your agency should know your industry and audience well enough to not start from 0 in the process.
3) Do You Have Examples of Successful Rebranding Projects in the Past?
To ensure the answer to questions 1 and 2 are not just empty words, it helps to have your future partner walk you through case studies of similar rebranding projects they have completed in your past. This will give you an idea of both the scope at which your agency can work, and their knowledge of your industry.
4) Can You Share References of Past Clients?
Even better, of course, is to engage directly with past clients of your future creative partner. Rebranding is a complex process, and one that requires close cooperation between all parties involved. Talking to past partners can go along way toward ensuring you of your agency’s expertise.
5) How Do You Conduct a Brand Audit?
Every branding process has to start with an audit of your current brand and its perception in the market place. Knowing just how your agency will go about that process can help immensely in determining their fit.
6) How Can You Make Us Unique?
Even the most complex rebranding process matters little if the end result looks suspiciously close to your competitors. The goal is to make yourself unique in the eyes of your audience, and your agency should have a plan in place to ensure that happens – including a competitive and market analysis.
7) What Are Your Steps?
Next, try to learn how your agency will take on the project. Do they have an estimated timeline in place, complete with a number of steps – brand audit, competitive analysis, redesign, evaluation, etc.? The more strategic they are from the beginning, the higher the likelihood that the end result is positive.
8) Will We Be Involved?
You and your agency should also set clear expectations of the client involvement in the project. Will you be able to review each step, and have input into your partner’s process? Finding the balance between involvement and micromanagement is crucial for success.
9) Who Will Own the Creative?
You may over look this step until it’s too late, but that doesn’t make it any more crucial: rebranding involves new logos and word marks, possibly even tag lines – and you and your agency should know exactly who owns the copyright on that creative work. You want the owner to be you, to ensure that you can use it without restrictions in the future.
10) How Do You Measure Success?
Finally, you should establish from the beginning how your agency will measure the success of the rebranding process. Your partner should not consider their work done as soon as the final piece of creative is handed over, instead staying with you until you can begin to see results of the process. The true ROI of your efforts can only be measured long-term, but initial reactions to your new brand identity should be considered and evaluated.
When engaging in a rebranding project, finding the right creative partner is absolutely crucial. Fortunately, the above ten questions help you narrow down your search to agencies who are experienced in the process, and will work with you to ensure a new, unique, and successful identity for your brand. To learn more about the process, contact us today!
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