Brand Cohesion

Four Principles to Ensure Your B2B Brand and Culture Align

The legendary management consultant, educator, and author Peter Drucker liked to say that “culture eats strategy for breakfast.” The best-laid strategic plans invariably hit a wall if they are not aligned with the organization’s culture — the beliefs and behaviors that determine how a company’s employees and management interact and handle business transactions…

Brand Behavior: Does Your Company Walk the Walk?

What is brand behavior? Simply put, brand behavior is how your brand interacts and reacts with real customers in the real marketplace. While your positioning statement may say one thing about your values and strengths, truly demonstrating them is another matter.
A missed opportunity
Picture this. You’re sitting at your desk flipping through a…

What Are Seven Principles for M&A Branding Success?

From a business perspective, few things are as critical to get right as a major merger or acquisition — and few things are as challenging.

On the long list of considerations during M&A activity, merger branding is one of the most crucial. Not getting the brand right is a key reason that, according to…

Envisioning Your Brand: Unlocking the Power of Visual Cues

The ironic thing about your brand’s image is that you can’t actually see it. Image as it relates to your brand is a metaphor, an idea meant to conjure up the assured sense of truth that comes with witnessing something concrete (and hopefully positive) with your own eyes. Your customers can’t see loyalty, trust, or any other quality, but an effective brand strategy can help them make the connection. First though, you’ll need to learn to see these qualities yourself.

Cutting Through the Sea of Sameness: Creating a Stand-Out Law Firm Brand

For decades, law firms went to market with stale messages that did little to create compelling impressions in the minds of their audiences, let alone lasting ones. To a large extent, they got away with it — relying on the strength of their bench, their personal relationships, and the knowledge that big companies had big budgets…

Aligning Brand and Culture: Where Should a Company Begin?

It’s the classic chicken or egg question — which element comes first when aligning brand and culture? Leadership teams often ask us this question during transformation initiatives. While there is no one-size-fits-all answer, there are three critical questions that any leadership team must answer to understand how to begin optimizing the relationship…

Investor Communications and Your Corporate Brand: To Align or Not to Align?

In today’s complex and even hostile investor environment, a company can no longer rely on performance and strategy alone to connect with investors. Companies with an engaging investor relations brand have the advantage of delivering focused, consistent messages that lead to more powerful connections with investors.

Rethinking Brand Identity After a Merger: A Visual History

With M&A activity at record levels, marketing thought leadership is abuzz with tips and tricks for maximizing the effectiveness of brand mergers. Such pieces often center on how to align corporate cultures and boost internal engagement. Without a doubt, these are vital issues that demand consideration. But is today’s culture craze sidestepping…

Brand Storytelling: Why It Works to Boost Marketing Impact

A tale as old as time
From early humans drawing pictures on walls to parents telling bedtime tales; from ancient civilizations that invented myths to modern creators who create sagas on the screen and plots on the page — storytelling is a tradition as old as humanity. Today, it’s also one of the most popular…

Merging Equal B2B Brands: Birth Name, Married Name, or New Name?

It’s a common question for newlyweds. Do they each keep their birth names, opt to use one name, or hyphenate? When B2B brands marry, however, the name game gets really tricky.
It’s even more acute when the merging enterprises occupy the same business segment and are merging equals. Sometimes it’s relatively simple…

Color Series: The Proportional Color Palette

The visual aspects of a brand are what creates the overall “brand identity,” a way for audiences to create perceptions about your brand based on the consistency of images, language, font, design, and of course, colors. Color plays a crucial role in both the creation of an identity and a logo as it creates consistency…

Building a Modern B2B Brand

B2B buyers are more sophisticated than ever. They have access to a wealth of information about every solution to every challenge their business may be facing. Many technology solutions make switching vendors simple — if not entirely painless. Strategically minded and budget-conscious, prospects are juggling decision criteria and competing interests in ever-changing ways. 

For…

Collaborating with a Brand Strategy Agency

Successful brands start with honest self-assessment — which may be hard to come by in a large company or an entrenched corporate culture. Enlisting the aid of an outside brand strategist can help, providing a clear-eyed window into the company’s strengths and weaknesses and offering agnostic, professional solutions.

But as in any relationship…

How to Build B2B Brand Awareness

Each year, agencies and research firms publish the rankings of the world’s most valuable brands. More than an ego boost for the listed brands’ marketers, these valuations are important intangible assets, and they become especially pertinent during M&A activity. In fact, a study from Houlihan Lokey showed that among its sample, 70…

Archetype Series #1: Magicians, Heroes and Outlaws

A brand is much more than a logo or a tagline. It’s the cohesive combination of what the brand stands for, what it says and what it does. To truly come to life, a brand needs dimension beyond the 2D world of its verbal and visual identity; it needs to live in the everyday…

B2B Content Marketing Strategies: Buzzworthy, Not Boring

Content is king. Content is the new creative. Both true, but this is old news. It’s long been common knowledge that in a crowded, advertisement-saturated environment, content marketing gives companies an opportunity to stand out by providing compelling information or entertainment rather than additional clutter. Best-in-class B2C examples include Netflix’s…

No Surprises: Five Tips for Sticking to Your Branding Timeline

Every branding engagement starts with a determination to stick to the schedule and meet every deadline. But many branding timelines go awry, leading to frustration and delays.

Most often, branding timelines are stalled by scheduling logjams, internal indecision, or last-minute executive bombshells. And delays can be costly. Not only do they represent missed marketing…

Color For Your Business: 3 Ways to Use Corporate Color More Effectively

In 2018 we visited the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum’s exhibition, “Saturated: The Allure and Science of Color.” The exhibition covers the development of color theory, and traces its application from antiquity to modern times through more than 190 objects. The director of the museum, Caroline Baumann, emphasizes that the exhibit “advances our understanding…