Living your brand with Brand Discovery

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The role of brands in the success of business.

The single issue that separates a successful organisation from an unsuccessful one is efficiency – pure and simple. Whatever other factors you may think may influence you, when you look into them, they will all boil down to the same thing.

It’s simple really. A business is a machine for making money. You put money in one end and out the other comes that money plus some more. The amount of extra you get is entirely reliant on how slickly you execute what you do in the middle, the cost involved, the number of people you employ and the time you take to make things happen.

Businesses thrive because they have ideas that turn into products or services that are bang on the nail as far as customer needs are concerned and they get them to market fast and for the right price – it’s all about efficiency. So where does a brand come into the equation? In short, your brand is the single most important contributor to efficiency. It is involved at every level of every process, in every corner of your business. A strong brand enables you to communicate more efficiently to all your stakeholders, not just customers, but employees, investors, suppliers, distributors and partners. So, customers know that you can offer what they need, investors know what you are doing with their money and partners, distributors and employees have no doubt what they have to do to play their part in delivering your success.

Three easy steps to a new more efficient way of working

Step one

At the heart of a strong brand is a Brand Model and the first step of the Brand Discovery programme is to create a Brand Model for your organisation. Lots of businesses have something similar, but they usually only tackle some of the elements of brand development. The Full Effect Marketing Brand Model does it all, without making life complicated and is perhaps the most important operating document that your business will have. It will play a part in every decision you make at every level, in every area of your business from the time it is agreed, forward. The key element of a Brand Model is the promise that you will make to your customers. Whether you realise it or not, every brand has an inherent promise and businesses that fail usually do so because they don’t deliver that promise.

Step Two

Step two of The Full Effect Marketing Brand Discovery Programme is where we start to identify the role that everyone will play in the all important process of delivering the promise. So now you have a Brand Model with a clearly defined promise and everyone has an identifiable role to play in the process of delivery. I can’t pretend that I am the only person who sees brand development this way, there are quite a few processes owned by different consultancies that are largely in agreement with me – and why not, it’s all based on clear evidence and hard fact. The trouble with most other methodologies though, is that they stop supporting you at exactly the point were you need the most help – when it comes to making it all happen.

Step Three

The third step of a Full Effect Marketing Brand Discovery Programme is all about turning understanding into action. For many businesses this is a daunting task and the reason that so many fall at this hurdle is because it’s just too high. The beauty of my approach is that it takes things step at a time, at a pace that suits your organisation and doesn’t involve turning your business upside down.

Of course, it’s about change management, it always will be, but it’s not about traumatic revolution, more like osmosis.

How Brand Discovery works

romteledit1.jpgWorkshop

I can tailor-make the programme to suit any organisation, but once I have gone through a process of orientation with the organisation the best way to kick things off is with a workshop – called, believe it or not, Workshop One, and it’s for the key senior managers in the organisation.

Workshop One

In Workshop One we explore brands in greater depth until everyone understands the role that your brand plays in your business. Because its fact not supposition or creative musing it isn’t hard to grasp, but we don’t move on until all the managers buy-in. Once we have the buy-in we can start to develop the brand model.

This is done through a process of discussion and syndicated tasks, with lots of paper flying around and a great deal of fun – who said that business has to be boring? We identify ten key elements of your brand – the “Ten Ps” – hey, and classical marketers thought there were only four! We end up with the basis of your Brand Model that I take away and over the period of between a week and a month (depending on whether additional research is required to clarify issues arising from our discussion) refine to produce your definitive Brand Model.

Workshop Two

Workshop Two involves the same players and starts with my presentation to you of the finished Brand Model. If you agree with what I have done we move on. If not (and this has never happened) we would stick at it until everyone buys in. Moving on means identifying what implications the Brand Model has for the way you work, the processes you engage, your structure and most of all, the roles that everyone will play in bringing your brand to life.

By the end of Workshop Two you’ll have the basis of an action plan – the first of many because action planning will be a new habit you’ll get into as a part of your adoption of Full Effect Marketing – which I will again take away and refine, creating in the process, individual action lists for each delegate. These action lists comprise tasks that you have volunteered to take on under the headings: Things I should stop doing, things I should do more of and things that I should start doing; plus a short list of things that your colleagues have nominated for you to do, each of which will facilitate an action of theirs.

You’ll have a format for briefing any action, including those undertaken by partners such as advertising agencies, also a “project process model” and a set of criteria that will enable you to judge the value and success of these and other development initiatives and get it right on strategy every time. Most importantly perhaps, you will have the framework for an internal marketing programme set up that will ensure you are fully and efficiently utilising your most valuable asset – your employees.

Moving forward with strategy meetings

The third step of The Full Effect Brand Discovery Programme is actually the first step in your new direction, so it’s by no means the end of the process, but the beginning of your transformation. This is also where I stick around while others would have left you to your own devices.

Full Effect Marketing introduces a regular forum – usually monthly – where the direction of your business is monitored and actions taken to maintain or adjust your course – in short, strategy meetings. These have a clear agenda based on the same framework each time, plus an approach that allows you to identify the actions you need to take to get you to where you want to be. As a part of Workshop Two we will have launched an internal marketing initiative that will ensure that all the decisions made in the Strategy meetings will filter through the organisation and everyone will understand and be fully committed to their role in the process of delivering your brand promise, and this is where you will see it really come into play.

A new and more efficient organisation.

By the end of the workshops sessions you’ll be well on the way to transforming your business, painlessly and without throwing the baby out with the bathwater, into a new kind of organisation built around a brand with a promise that everyone in your organisation has ownership of and is working to deliver. You’ll have developed new processes along the way too. These are not processes that I will impose on you, but that you create yourself and as long as you manage them properly your progress will escalate, you’ll become more efficient in all areas and therefore more successful. I’ll still be around too, to make sure that you stay focused. I’ll take part in your strategy meetings for a few months, which means I’ll also be around to pick up key issues and steer special projects that arise from your ongoing strategy development. I will also mentor managers if its needed, as they adopt a new perspective, adapt to new objectives and create and use new tools.

Brand Discovery enables you to tighten up in many areas of your business including product and service development, customer satisfaction and retention and it’s especially valuable in gaining extra mileage from your external marketing communications. Many organisations have used the programme as a prelude to logo and corporate identity design – in fact its an essential first step that will add dramatically to the return you get on this kind of investment – and others have applied it to their advertising, using a tool that I have devised that ensures that advertising is always communicating as it should.

Fee structure

My fees for the Brand Discovery Programme are £10,000. That will take you up to the point of your first strategy meeting, but doesn’t include external services such as research that may occasionally be required. However, such costs are always identified and agreed before they are incurred.

The time I spend with you once the initiative is live, is charged at a retained day-rate that will usually include the facility for on-line or telephone consulting on short-term issues.

You can choose how many days each month you would like me to participate, but as a retained client you automatically qualify for an advantageous fee-scale should you want to extend my involvement at any time. If you would like to commit up front to a six month programme that includes a Brand Discovery Programme and ongoing consulting the fees for the Brand Discovery are also reduced.

Transform your business today

So now you know how it works you’ll also understand just how much of an advantage Full Effect Marketing and the Brand Discovery Programme will give you in your market. Whether you are a brand leader or a challenger you can’t afford to waste resources and marketing is one area where most organisations waste most. Adopt a Full Effect Marketing Brand Discovery Programme and build a strong brand that will increase the return you will get, not just from your marketing investment, but because marketing is part of everything that your organisation does, across the board.

And if you are still not convinced this is what others have to say about Full Effect Marketing and the Brand Discovery Programme.

“I attended Phil’s program of brand discovery workshops. His preparation, planning and facilitation is among the best I have ever seen. His workshops are very carefully prepared and planned but he makes them comes across as being spontaneous. The depth of knowledge he has of the importance of brands as the ‘heart and soul’ of an organisation and the enthusiasm which he puts into his training/facilitation delivery makes his workshops both a memorable and enjoyable event and also a learning experience which leaves you thinking for a long time afterwards …”

Liam Anderson –International process and training consultant in the telco sector.

“… I have never before or since seen anybody weigh up a situation and come up with a solution so quickly. He took control and re-set our coordinates without anybody feeling that he was intruding. Phil’s involvement didn’t stop there though; he guided us through the entire execution and coached us through the presentation to our client. The result was better than we could possibly have expected and Phil’s brisk, confident approach helped us meet what we had thought was an impossible deadline without anybody having a nervous breakdown …”

Michail Tzvetanov– Client Services Director JWT Prague

“If you hire a consultant to massage your ego, show you the quick fix or hold your hand as you go down, try someone else. Phil is a straight-talking, original thinker with a way of making the most radical palatable and a commitment to delivering the best that you won’t better! His Full Effect Marketing philosophy puts marketing in the driving seat and will take you on a tour around your business that brings everything into line (and I mean everything) behind a single idea that’s yours, is real and which you can realistically deliver …”

Susan Wilson– VP Marketing CityPass. US.

“Phil’s Full Effect Marketing philosophy leaves you thinking that life makes sense after all. His down-to-earth approach makes a refreshing change from the marketing mystique spun by others and if you attend a Full Effect seminar you’ll be sure to come away appreciating why everything your business does impacts your bottom line”.

Jeff Brades– Global Marketing Director – CAS

“Phil has a rarely found ability to communicate ideas and solutions to and across both the brand and data areas of marketing. As well as being innovative with his own concepts he is quick to pick up ideas from others and shape and transform them in to an actionable strategy. In addition he has a keen eye for identifying tactical opportunities that can result in an early ROI”.

Richard Lewis– Experian

“Phil is an extremely knowledgeable partner in the area of branding, marketing and communications. He has a vast reservoir of experience upon which he continually draws and he is always capable of finding a relevant analogy for a particular business problem. He is curious, creative and communicative, a lot of fun to work with, and passionate about his work. I would recommend him to anyone looking for a serious and stimulating partner in the areas of marketing and branding”.

Colin Shea– Regional Manager Consulting Services TNS.

“Phil is very structured and goal oriented marketing professional. His clients do benefit from his deep knowledge and many years of experience on the field of marketing services. I endorse Phil’s ability to bring order and structure into complex marketing challenges and make things work to reach the goals …”

Petr Barton– Partner. Lundegaard Digital Marketing

“I just have to recommend Phil and his service! I had a chance to meet him at presentation for his client (Philips) and his thoughts, comments and the way how he reacted were fantastic! …”

Martin Svarc – Client Director. Boomerang Publishing

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