Your brand is your company’s control center, or what we like at TREW to call “the brain”. It is the collective set of experiences over many years that shape who your company is and its unique value proposition. In marketing terms, your brand is personified both visually – through your company logo and branding styleguide – and contextually – through words, such as your mission, vision, and positioning statements; core company and product-level messaging; and company and campaign taglines.
With a smart, creative approach, TREW Marketing brings years of experience helping companies shape their brand and identity with a service we call the Branding Brain. Below are elements illustrating our approach and Branding Brain success with three client examples – The Hogg Foundation, Starmount Systems, and Alfamation.
To Develop the Brain, First Know the Heart
To position a company, both visually and contextually, it’s important to first know about the company’s heart. What is the company and its team uniquely passionate about and capable of delivering that no other company can? This requires a lot of listening – in person, via research, and persistent studying.
For The Hogg Foundation, TREW conducted an in-depth market research project, focused on internal leadership and staff, as well as external groups of stakeholders and consumers.
Market research included:
- 21 hours of qualitative in-person interviews with all staff
- Over 800 external quantitative online surveys
- Research analysis and findings
Following this market research, TREW Marketing gained honest stakeholder insights that led to recommendations for branding, messaging, and communications.
Starmount, a retail software solutions provider was undergoing an entire brand redesign, and partnered with TREW to develop core branding elements, including mission, vision and positioning statements; tagline concepts; and company and product-level core messaging. The TREW team worked closely with company business, technical and marketing leadership and conducted qualitative competitive analysis over several months to understand Starmount’s unique value proposition in a highly competitive retail software marketplace.
Alfamation, a test and measurement solutions provider, selected TREW to manage their rebranding efforts by crafting their “brain,” including company logo and brand guidelines; product logo creation; creative guidance for software, hardware packaging; core company and product level positioning and messaging; and mission statement and tagline. TREW began this process by interviewing company business and sales leaders and key partners as well as studying the competitive landscape and market opportunities.
Listen Actively and Patiently
Choosing words in branding statements is a slow, methodical, creative and patient process. For the Hogg Foundation, through our deliberate process, a key vision crystallized – to move from speaking about mental illness or recovery, to the more progressive, all-encompassing term, mental wellness. It was also important to emphasize their mission’s focus in the state of Texas, while being mindful of their strong awareness and influence nationally.
Through much research and group discussions, TREW developed the following mission and vision statements for the foundation:
Mission: The Hogg Foundation for Mental Health advances mental wellness of the people of Texas as an impactful grantmaker and catalyst for change
Vision: The Hogg Foundation for Mental Health will invest our knowledge and resources to move Texas forward in achieving mental wellness
Although Starmount serves a completely different market place of retail Chief Information Officers (CIO) and Chief Marketing Officers (CMO) at large retailers such as Urban Outfitters or Home Depot, getting to their unique value proposition and company positioning followed a similar process: rolling up our sleeves, listening and asking many, many questions, to ultimately get to the Starmount heart.
Out of this process and a collective understanding of Starmount’s unique software products and services and very talented and experienced team of retail software developers, we were then able to develop the brain, including the following mission and vision statements:
Mission: “Starmount software brings the power of online retail to create relevant, engaging in-store shopping experiences”
Vision: “To transform the in-person shopping experience and make retail stores relevant”
For Alfamation, the TREW team sought to capture their passion and scientific knowledge for creating out-of-the-box products and services for design, test, and manufacturing engineers and managers in the automotive, consumer electronics, telecom, and medical industries. It was important for the mission, tagline, and logo to convey their innovative culture and present the company’s broad family of software and hardware products to customers globally. Through our same deliberative process, we developed their brain, including these elements:
Mission: “We leverage our scientific passion and knowledge to imagine and create new ways to engineer functional test systems”
Tagline: “Imagine a better test solution”
Live Your Brand – Everyday. Everyway.
Building off the core ”brain” elements, The Hogg Foundation and TREW created and prioritized organizational goals, core values, and made their branding elements visible at all touch points in the organization through activities that included:
- 4 organizational goals and detailed recommendations
- Re-designed website with robust content management system and clear navigation
- E-newsletter template extending the web design brand experience
- Established core values embraced by The Hogg Foundation’s internal and external audiences
Starmount’s “brain” came to life with a custom, integrated 12 –month marketing strategy and activity plan, resulting in:
- Communications Brain used as messaging guide for primary company and product communication
- Consistency and efficiency gains by using Brain vs. reinventing messaging with each new activity
- Scalable and integrated mix of low- and high-cost media investments to generate demand
Once Alfamation’s core elements of the “brain” were developed, TREW integrated their branding across all marketing disciplines with a 12-month marketing plan, including:
- Website re-design which resulted in 100% increase of pages viewed from previous site
- Leveraging the company and product level positioning and messaging “brain” with the design and production of Alfamation’s booth at NI Week; developing their promotional strategy; and creating technical product brochures
- Compelling email marketing campaign that extended their trade show success, and generated a response rate 2.6 times greater than the industry average