DIY is the Kiwi way, but is it right for branding?
We read a great blog the other day that really got us thinking about how brands are developed and executed in this current digital world. It feels like there is an increasing amount of repetition out there, which also seems to coincide with the proliferation of the convenience branding solutions that enable people to seemingly ‘do it themselves’.
We understand. DIY is the Kiwi way – our number 8 wire mentality is programmed into all New Zealanders. In lots of cases, it’s why we lead the way in so many amazing innovations that have changed the world.
And of course, when you do something yourself it generally has a lower cost than engaging with a professional. But like a lot of things we may DIY, usually there is a trade off between the cost and the end result.
The modern branding landscape
It’s worth taking a quick look at the modern-day branding landscape because regardless of whether a brand is developed by a professional agency or via a DIY solution, the world we operate in is the same for everyone.
Technology has enabled much greater levels of communication and information sharing, which means brands have more opportunity to engage. This also means that customers are exposed to far more choice, giving them more power in the brand/customer relationship. So, in a world where brands are having to work harder to gain or maintain market share, differentiating and adding value is as important as ever.
Branding is one of the most important tools to achieving return on investment because it engages with the hearts and minds of your audience. If the world we operate in is cluttered, noisy and filled with competing voices, then it is so important to find your place and own the heck out of it.
The problem with cookie cut brands
There’s a lot that goes into developing brands. Any designer can develop a logo but the process we follow at Novo involves delving deeply into the many different components that make a brand successful. The resulting logomark and brand platform you see is the tangible representation of a significant amount of research, conversations and strategic thinking that is truly representative of your offering.
DIY branding solutions really don’t allow the level of thinking and insight needed to set up an incredible brand. It’s very much transactional and parameter-driven with limited options. So, while the cost is probably lower and the project may be turned around faster, the result seldom includes all the considerations that really make a brand unique, special and tailored specifically to the target audience.
Very often, what this looks like is a cookie cut brand – a variation of a templated design. And that’s where the sense of “I’ve seen it before” comes from.
Plan for the future
Developing a brand using branding professionals does not need to be arduous. It can be executed in a very timely manner without compromising the necessary strategic thought process. It's a worthwhile investment because it sets out a well-prescribed blueprint that ensures your brand remains relevant and aligned to your audience's needs and motivations for years to come.
Think of your brand as your plan for the future. Do it right, do it once and reap the long-term benefits that a strong brand will inevitably bring.