Practice versus theory
For many corporations, institutions, organizations and entrepreneurs the concepts of brand and brand strategy are a real bother. At first, they fail to realize the difference between fancy graphic solutions and strategic communication design that produce business results. Second, they realize that they have invested time and money in an ineffective and inappropiate solution.That’s the moment when they understand how important is to find brand experts to work with all along. And the next question they ask themselves is how can I spot a brand expert?
Expectation versus reality
First of all, many branding agencies and freelancers do graphic design just because it’s cool. Usually they do logo design and not brand identity, without much or any background neither in the field of graphic design nor that of brand identity. Identity design is more than drawing some shapes and typing some text in a fancy typeface. More than that, branding is even much more complex and difficult to master than identity design. Brand experts are those who have gone through an entire process that requires a great eye for design, composition and typography and an intellectual capability to come up with creative and original solutions that work for a specific business and its intended target audience. Brand experts know that a branding program means strategy, concept, words, animantions and many other thrilling experiences that may be included in the design solutions they produce. Much of what brand experts do as visual communicators involves aesthetic choices and artistic skills but also professional practice built on research, continous learning, concept development, structuring and presentation of messages designed to facilitate better understanding of the brand.
So, in order to spot brand experts first you have to get right what is your business and where do you want to take it. Nowadays almost any one sells himself as brand expert and can create a logo or design, but will that concept be right for your intended market? Real brand experts are able to choose the right concept and convey those messages in a clear and effective way.
Second of all there are the big competitive international brand agencies. No doubt that they have reached this level and boost their image equity thanks to their brand experts professionalism. But, most of the times they are concentrated on winning recognition and awareness by craving for the famous brand identity competitions awards. Thus, they forget that brand experts are not only proficient, but also skillful people who deliver accessible, clear and effective advices. Many brand agencies deliver successful solutions, but can’t actually deliver a viable and on the brief finished product. Real brand experts have a genuine understanding of their client’s business and marketplace and take a customer-centric approach to develop the brand strategy. Thus they stay away from a design solution that looks good on paper but mean little or nothing to the target outside.
So, in order to spot brand experts secondly you have to decide if you want to have an admired logo in a design study case manual or to manage a real problem which can affect your company.
What should you expect from brand experts?
Whether you want to revise your brand positioning, to create a new brand, to train your team or to examin what messages your brand is giving to the audiences, working with brand experts gives you:
- expert assessment of where your brand is now;
- practical and inspiring advice to take your brand to the next level;
- advice on brand positioning, strategic decisions and visual communication.