Author Archives: deni

Reasons Why Having A Logo Is Important For Your Branding

A picture speaks a thousand words – the idiom is not new to anyone. It is the reality, which most of us deny accepting, but no matter what, you cannot run away from the fact that visual effects leave a monumental impression than the words or saying. Therefore, when it comes to the branding of your company, so, having a logo is important to stand yourself apart from the crowd. It’s an undeniable truth that at some point, we can forget the name of any company, but, we recognize them with their logo. Do you still think it is not worth to invest in? Well, if yes, scroll down and learn the importance of having a logo for your branding, so, you won’t deny investing in it.

  • First Impression: You’ll never get a second chance to make your very first impression, so, you should grab it. A logo will help you leave a first as well as the lasting impression of your brand in the customer’s mind. Without this, you won’t be able to communicate your ownership because it is the only thing that helps your clients understand who you are and what benefits you are trying to offer them.
  • Distinguishes You From The Competition: Well, we all know that, it takes nothing to join the crowd and do what they all are doing, but it takes everything and courage to stand-alone. And if you want to make yourself a brand in the cut-throat competition, you need to get out of the couch and do something that gives your clients a reason to choose you over your competitors. Also, it will help them distinguish you from the competitors.
  • Win Customer Loyalty: Customer loyalty is very much important for your branding, as they are your true asset and having them on your list will reflect the growth of your business. A logo will help you win that faith. It’ll help you stay close to your customers, so, you can understand their needs better and serve them accordingly.

Do you still have any doubt? No, what are you waiting for? Before your competitors take your customers away, go and design a logo for the branding of your business. Confused from where to start and how to start? Hire a professional website designing company that also serve you logo designing and help you create an identity over the internet or intranet. You need to do it correctly with care because your brand image is connected to it.

How the Spring Season Affects How People View Your Brand

This article focuses on how the psychology of spring impacts how customers engage with your brand. Remember, this month is all about creating momentum to “spring forward” our branding efforts.

Temperature, humidity, and, especially sunlight can have a huge impact on a consumer’s mind frame and by extension their spending. A 2010 study by Kyle B. Murray revealed that exposure to sunlight dramatically increased levels of consumption as well as the amount spent per item. Experiments show consumers would willingly pay 37% more for green tea and 56% more for gym membership after being exposed to sunlight. Similarly, a study by Persinger and Levesque found that 40% of mood evaluations were accounted for by a combination of meteorological events; in particular, barometric pressure and sunshine.

What does this mean for your brand? This is the time of year when people are subconsciously looking for new and exciting experiences! They are acting on what the season represents – rebirth and refresh. People are more receptive to discovery, exploration, and trying new things. This is the time of year we most want to be active, positive, and progressive. And, we seek brands that mirror who we want to be.

The good news. This is one of the best times for many businesses to introduce new customers to your brand – especially if is something that involves going outside to experience you. This is the time of year that brick and mortar stores typically do better than online stores. Subconsciously, we are in better moods and that makes us more receptive to trying something new. Net – this is the perfect time of year for most small businesses to dedicate resources to a strong trial program.

The bad news. This is also the time of year that your current customers could start to get the wandering eye. You need to refresh your brand and remind them why they love you. This is not about repeating the same ol’, same ol’. Rather, I would encourage you to think about introducing your customers to something new in your offering. Reassure them that you are progressing and growing.

Net – taking advantage of mood state is a critical component of building a strong brand. There are some simple things you can incorporate today to help build a better brand.

PLAN “BEE”: How to apply this to your business

  1. What is the ONE THING you could do TODAY to give your brand a “Spring refresh” appearance?
  • For example, if you have a brick and mortar store, could you rearrange the furniture or change a picture on your wall? Even adding (or changing) your welcome sign. For an online store, could you send out an email campaign with a refreshed look or refresh something on your page?
  • If you sell products, is there a different way you could display it or different language you could use to talk about it? Maybe there is a different feature you could highlight this time around?
  • If YOU are your brand, what new skill or information could you share?
  1. What is ONE THING you could do to take advantage of the subconscious consumer behavior that the “newness of Spring” creates? Remember, building a brand is about making these emotional and subconscious connections. The more you can tap into this, the better.
  • For example, is there an opportunity to link the good weather with your brand? Maybe setting up shop outside, opening the doors, etc.
  • Could you incorporate Spring messaging and images in your communications?
  • Are you highlighting items that are most positively linked to Spring?

Brand Marketing In A Nutshell – People > Product

Branding is often seen as the ability to properly add a logo to a company; perhaps even going so far as to consider the company’s role in a community.

Whilst this is not incorrect, it’s not really a core definition of what a “brand” is, or how “branding” can be leveraged. “Branding” is a marketing practice which is to be imbued throughout a company (not just on the surface level).

Although young / smaller companies don’t need branding (at least to start with), they will typically grow to a point where they need to at least consider what a “brand” means and why it’s important. It’s this consideration (and acting upon it) which determines whether a company will grow largely or not..

The most important thing to consider with respect to “brands” / “branding” is that it’s typically the one element which allows a business to grow. There are many “levels” to company growth; not having a core “brand” offer is by far the biggest hold back for most people who want to progress further than just being a curiosity for a market.

Ultimately, a “brand” is about people, not products. Whilst products are extremely important, the *most* important thing is how those products can be used by people. This very simple, although some may argue esoteric – people continue to keep using products because they either enjoy the benefits they bring OR because it does something else for their wellbeing (increases social kudos etc).

The point is that if you’re looking at running (and growing) a company, one of the key things you need to do early on is determine where your brand fits into the grand scheme, and how that can be leveraged to ensure that you’re able to make the best strategic investments when the time arises.

To do this, the best thing you can do (as a company) is determine WHO your company is for. Ambitious young men? Wealthy middle-class housewives? Japanese people? The best brands are ruthless in their pursuit of dealing with people who share their ideals. This is essentially what determines the core of growth for some of the largest companies on earth.

If you consider – for a minute – that any brands which focus exclusively on the type of people they’re trying to work on behalf of – rather than going down the same route as everybody else (selling mass amounts of “me too” products), they tailor an experience around an end ideal that their audience can benefit from. This is where “innovation” comes from.

Upgrade To A Branded Elevator Pitch

Think about it. Your elevator pitch and your personal brand are co-dependent. The two share a mission-critical objective, to create a positive and memorable first impression of you and your enterprise when you meet personal and professional contacts. The all-important self-introduction known as the elevator pitch is, while brief and simple, nevertheless your most important marketing tool, because it’s often how people first get to know you and your business.

From the opening line to the final sentence, your elevator pitch is Step One in communicating your personal brand. Its content must be clear and concise, and persuade people that you are worth knowing and doing business with. Build a branded elevator pitch by choosing two or three of your products or services to use as talking points. Then draft the pitch, edit and rehearse. Like a singer or musician, memorize the melody of the song that is your elevator pitch and improvise as needed.

Also like making music, your delivery is as important as the content. Polish your presentation by speaking in a pleasant and energetic tone of voice. Exude a welcoming and friendly demeanor as you greet people with a smile, all the while standing up straight and maintaining eye contact, as you extend your right arm to initiate a comfortably firm hand shake and give your name.

Networking is a 365 days a year activity and your elevator pitch can easily be tailored to fit any context, whether you’re at a holiday party or a business program. Purely social events usually do not require mention of your business life, unless the topic comes up a little later, as you chat with your new acquaintances.

What matters most is that your pitch ensures that you are perceived as competent, credible and authentic. When introducing your professional role, use easy-to-understand, jargon-free language as you succinctly describe two or three of the products or services you offer (What you do) that provide solutions for problems that your clients encounter and must resolve (Why you do it). Depending on whom you meet, you may choose to reveal the types of organizations you work with (For whom you do it) and the value derived (benefits and outcomes) when clients work with you.

Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, famously said, “Your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.” Take time to develop an elevator pitch that creates a trust-building first impression for prospective clients and referral sources, one that serves as an effective first touch point for your personal brand.

Why Are Brand Guidelines Necessary?

I have always thought of brands as an extension of Humans; just like us, brands have a life journey too. Every day a new brand is born and like a new-born child, it too comes with certain attributes and characteristics, which only become obvious and understandable as we come in contact with it on a regular basis.

Children are often given ‘guidelines- do’s and don’ts to deal with everyday life. Similarly, brands too need some rules that will help it create a distinguished image of itself in the market. These rules are created by carefully examining its market, competition and the purpose of its existence.

Later, when a child starts going to school, he develops his own list of ‘do’s and don’ts and a way of life that is customised to his desires and dreams. A brand, too, builds its dos and don’ts which clearly state how it will look, behave and speak. Just like the simple things that guide us in life everyday form the basis of our existence and make things extremely organized and easy, brand guidelines, in a very efficient and systematic way lay emphasis on how the brand will unleash its content into the world. This provides a solid framework to use as a starting point for any branding work.

Just like the traffic signals, guidelines bring a sense of direction. Creativity within limits can be challenging, but at the same time, it provides the necessary direction. When you have too much to explore, it can get intimidating and paralysing. And in the end, you might just be exploring various routes without knowing where exactly to go. When a thoughtful guide is created, it gives a clear understanding to the branding team on how to go about things instead of just beating around the bush.

Life without any rules is unimaginable. In fact, without rules it would be chaotic. Then, how can a brand live its life without any regulations and guidelines? It’s these guidelines that set the brand apart from others; they provide the necessary direction to reach its goal. Brand guidelines give the brand a sense of coherence. This is vital as it ensures that there is symmetry and consistency in the brand voice that echoes with the audience. This will thereafter create brand awareness and build trust.

So, whether you are a start-up, an already well-established brand or thinking about rebranding, it’s never too late to develop brand guidelines.

marshmallow is an India based brand development and creative services agency operating out of Mumbai and Ahmadabad, India.

We strongly believe that in today’s ever-changing and challenging times it is imperative to build a strong brand equity that firmly stands the test of time. To know us more, have a look at our creative portfolio and to download our credential presentation, please visit our website.

6 Hacks to Keep Your Web Design Forever Young for Corporate Branding

Website aging is analogous to human aging. As you need to take good care of yourself, so does you need to keep your business site in excellent condition? Keep it refurbishing on contemporary standards. After all, this is from where you get money.

Every web design project, big or small, comes with specific considerations and contemplations. With the passage of time it starts appearing like an old chimney that needs renovation. The drastic consequences of not keeping your site updated are decreased user engagement, declined potential leads and, eventually, depleted conversion rate.

Make Your Corporate Identity Your Web Design Guideline

Often online retailers think once developed, websites will keep on rolling prospective users in the wake of a building of a loyal consumer base. It’s not true. You need consistent support from your hired web design agency in UK to keep your website a permanent source of revenue generation. Here you need to make the maximum benefit of your corporate business identity.

In the following, I bring you significant hacks to make your website design appear youthful with evergreen functionality.

1. Discard Data Junk & Profitless Content:

Don’t ignore data junk, dead files and also content that’s no more beneficial for your business growth and development. Regardless of your project size and whether or not your website is growing organically, remove abandoned content and data junk. The good reason to do this is to keep up with the excellent visual appeal and performance of the website.

2. Find & Fix the Outdated Functions:

To keep your site forever young, find and fix all the old functions. Abandon all unclear coding blocks that are different types of snippets present on the website for various reasons. If you want your site to work at a glance, then take good care of coding standards. For instance, you built a site in PHP and added responsible code snippets, but now they are the part of obsolete language versions which you should not continue anymore.

3. Defective External Links:

Over the years, you may find hundreds of broken links. Either close them forever or fix them. No matter what SEO potential you invest in brand marketing and sales, if you fail in dealing with this problem, you will be going to destroy everything you built – sooner or later. There is no second opinion in it. External links once get defective will leave a negative impact on your Google ranks. If you do not want to experience this suffering, then don’t delay in fixing the problematic links.

4. Broken Internal Links:

You cannot afford to ignore this problem as well. If you don’t pay attention and deal with side effects of broken links or 404 errors, it will hurt your business to the core. It may put you out of the competition because if not detected and resolved timely then it will affect your site’s ranking resulting in decreased search engine visibility.

5. Improvise CMS Nomenclature:

A robust content management system is the cornerstone of business sites. You can upgrade it whenever there is a new update. But, often you may not clear about updating the CMS or not. Today, it as a standard thing to do. Continues blending of different platforms is a plus.

Don’t allow your CMS turn wild; it usually happens when site’s clear structures turned into a maze. For example, if you want to add a database query and developer doesn’t know how to do that in the current CMS and flange-mount HTML coded website allied with an external MySQL database to deliver the required information. I doubt if it’s not going to trouble you while submitting your offer.

6. Go Latest with Mobile-First Index:

It’s good to stick to well-established web design trends such as responsiveness, parallax interaction, noticeable CTAs, convenient checkout process, and easy navigation, etc. But, as a web designer, avoid going through a wrong door. It means make well-informed technological principle decisions.

All businesses need barrier-free website designs since the year dot. Therefore, they should have sites that work properly on all types of mobile devices. But, at the same time, no business can afford missing out any trend such as Google’s recently introduced mobile-first index feature.

Verdict:

If you need a forever attractive, young and productive website, then keep its design overhauled at regular intervals – ensuring seamless user interface leading to the exceptional user experience. Keep your web design simplistic and responsive while supporting all devices, browsers and digital marketing platforms for boosted conversions and staying in the business lead.

The Importance of Consistent Branding

Its becoming increasing common for your customers to evaluate, and make, buying decisions online. Just look at your own buying habits – how often have you reviewed the competition before even walking into a store (if you even go into a store and not buy online!). This is exactly why branding is more important than ever.

So, what is branding? It essentially boils down to your customers’ perception of your business and includes personality, character, and values. Branding should extend to your storefront/office, all signage/print materials, website and online presence, customer service and team interactions.

Where do you start?

  1. Do your research – who are your competitors, what do their sites look, feel and sound like. Should yours stand out from the crowd or be in line with the industry. What makes you unique and stand out from your competitors? Depending on who you serve (and understanding their needs) will dictate your direction.
  2. Understand who you are and who you serve (a little more research!) – what do your customers care about the most? Put your customers first – cater to their needs from your site first, start with easy to find contact information. Ask yourself if the copy is too long or is filled with jargon. Is your content arranged on the page so its easy to read, does it tell enough of the story to be helpful, do you provide testimonials to ease decision making, are your packages/pricing easy to find and understand? Will they know what they’re getting? We have a great worksheet that helps clients understand their client, if you’d like to receive a copy – please send us an email! We’d be happy to send it along.
  3. Define your mission statement and vision -All actions and communication should tie back to your mission statement and vision, and your brand should reflect your future goals. Let’s take for example that your vision is to recreate an industry and stand out by turning the industry on its head, sounds radical? Now what if that’s your vision, and your website is shades of grey with very formal text, heavy with jargon. How does that speak to your vision?
  4. Design and Copy – don’t underestimate the power of visual appeal. Create a logo that’s recognizable and choose a color palette that reflects your values and voice. The structure of your website should be simple to navigate, with clearly laid out text, that’s easy to digest in a clear font (not too scripty and difficult to read). Copy should be professional and demonstrate experience while speaking in a language that all can understand. Your copy should be clear of typos and grammatical errors (enlist the help of an editor, or at the very least have a trusted peer review your content).
  5. Social media is an extension of your brand, this includes both look, feel, and content. Use social media to extend your reach with timely responses to reinforce your dedication to customer service, quality information that is curated and created in line with your vision.

And one bonus tip – create a style guide with standards for tone, voice, style; and includes standards for social media, website design, any graphic design going forward. Don’t forget to include team expectations! This is the perfect time to create guidelines for response time, signature lines, tone and professionalism.

How to Create a Brand Professional That People Want to Get Behind

Have more than a blog and a social media account.

In case you desire to generate a significant impact as a business online, having a blog and a social media account is definitely not enough. What is crucial is to be aware that there has to be a brand behind that blog and social media account. There have to be something that make people feel is a whole, not just a bunch of posts and comments that are not tied together. Having a logo doesn’t automatically makes your site a brand. To have a real brand you have to comprehend what’s behind all the text you can write, it’s like the essence that is deep of your whole platform, it is that little something that makes it special. Once you have a brand you’ll have fans, in order to achieve that you need to create yourself and image, that image you create needs to get exposure.

When can you conclude you have a brand.

You may ask yourself, if I have my site logo, and it doesn’t is the brand, then what is it? Something is pretty obvious, a brand without a name is not a brand. When you register your company you give it a name right? That name will be your online site’s name at the same time. The big company Google, says, that brands are more successful at SEO nowadays, at the same time from the user’s perspective sites with brands can be seen as even more professional than sites with no brands defined. A good example for this: if you call your site “Sports World”, it will work much better than just calling it “Sports Articles”.

Visual language of your brand.

Something that is also very important in this concept is having “visual language” in your site. After your logo has been created, the next step is selecting the colors and also images that relate to your business brand and are the basis of your brand’s logo. At the moment you have all these elements, you have to combine them into everything else you develop to your site. For example if your logo has the colors black, brown and gray, then your website needs to use these colors, same for your social media accounts, it’s about expanding your visuals to everything that you create from now on for your business.

Your Mission Statement.

So, the work doesn’t end there. Now you need to be able to create what is called as “The Mission Statement”. This is the more important aspect of your brand. Some experts say this mission statement is what to need to be defined first. “The Mission Statement” is just a short paragraph that explains what is your business about. Basically what you do and the reason behind it. This includes the goal you have, the vision and also the commitment you put to make it works. After you define this, you’ll have a better vision of what your business is about and based on that you’ll get the inspiration you need to create the elements of your business, the logo and the name are a couple of them. At this point you made your business name and your logo stand for something, thus now people can stand behind you and your business.

Here’s How To Use A Website For Business Branding

While the entire business world has fallen under the grasp of digitisation, an upright website can help them utilise the virtual web space effectively to score up their branding, gain more visitors, and establish credibility. In other words, a website can help them achieve what they couldn’t even after rigorous marketing offline. However, not every site can boost the branding of a company. There has to be a right strategy, apt content, intuitive graphics and some interesting design to captivate viewers and convert them to money-making leads. Websites are of varied kinds. It may be services-based, garnering leads or may just provide information about something. This article focuses on the former. Read the section below to know the essential ways to tweak a website for branding for getting potential leads.

Work on Website Functionality, Styling and Design

The way a website can be navigated leaves an impression about the brand. Whether it is an innovative one or a conventional old business site, it can be perceived well by the visitors by its functions. So, businesses need to emphasise on the functionality of the site so that it catches the attention of the targeted ones. Layout of the website along with key design elements like background, fonts, navigation buttons, header, footer, etc. all is together responsible for creating the brand impression.

Authentic ‘About Us’ and Creative ‘Blog’ Section

While the ‘About Us’ page will offer more clarity and better idea to the customers about the business, a ‘Blog’ section will show them the company’s feat in the industry. If you own a website, be specific about putting credible information on the About us section and engage the audience with a brainstorming blog topics.

Present a definite value-proposition

When a entrepreneurs start a business, there might be some unique idea behind it. In a website, at every step, they should be very clear about that and know what to communicate to the visitors. It’s always about being different from the rest to grab maximum eyeballs. From domain name to landing pages, clear your audience about the unique value proposition.

Make an impression with Social Buttons

One of the major reasons businesses use website these days for branding is because it pushes social promotion. By putting social-share buttons at the most prominent places in different pages, companies make everything of the site super quick and easy to promote on social media profiles.

Realise the power of Imagery

By far, very few businesses know that using imagery on their website has some great positive influence on the branding. While large-size photos with clarity give an utter professional look to the site, small graphics, icons, and animated illustrations add a fun appeal to it. On the whole, using imagery will help viewers connect more to the site.

Nothing can beat the power of a website at this present digital era! A consistent brand presence with a website is the foundation for online marketing. So, if you have a site representing your business try harnessing it in all possible ways to promote you as a brand, but not only to sell your services or provide information.

A Comprehensive Guide on How to Define Your Brand Online

Your online “brand” is important because it differentiates you from all your competitors by defining your online presence. It is multifaceted as it allows your products or services stand out and be seen so consumers can identify and choose your product. Your “Brand” should convey the look, feeling, taste, sound and quality of what you are providing.

Brands are not just for big companies with massive marketing campaigns, they are equally important for anyone with an online presence no matter how small, if they want to grow and expand. Having your own personal brand invites many opportunities you otherwise would have missed.

Start by identifying your customer base or audience

Identify the age and gender of your potential customers? What do they do, the entertainment, sports and relaxation they enjoy? Where do they shop and what foods and places do they like to eat in? Are they homeowners, what’s their employment status? Are they single, in a relationship, do they have pets. What are their values?

You also need to know how they will see your product or service

How do you want the world to view your brand, products or services? What message do you want your brand to convey? What makes your brand different or unique? Is anyone else offering the same service or product? Are they doing it well or can you improve the service? Are there other brands similar and how to capitalize on their success?

You need to decide on what you want to resonate or the impression you what to give. Always, the first impression that is gleaned by a customer or client is the one that lasts. It must convey trustworthiness, likeability, sincerity, competence and a strong quality and value.

How do people think and what effect is there when they hear your brand name? What are the goals of your brand name?

Select all the media platforms you want to use to spread your brand and message such as blogs, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Podcasts and other websites. Consider partnering up with other websites to share each other’s audiences there are 4.5 billion potential clients on the net so clients are not the problem, attracting them is.

According to a professional branding agency, if you have a quality, value product or service that people want and a well thought out brand that’s promoted properly, you have the recipe for success, so over time, your brand will grow a community.

The best brands are simple and instantly recognizable, such as an apple for Apple Computers, the scallop shell of Shell petrol, the dove of Dove Soap. Sometimes the best brands or logos can be simple but elegantly scripted like the way Virgin is written in the British Billionaire, Richard Brampton’s companies Virgin Airline which is instantly recognised worldwide as a quality company, this gives your brand a crisp clean representation. The wrong, clumsy, untidy or dull brand mark will give a first impression of being unreliable, cheap or untrustworthy and this can be very hard to rectify or change.