Tips from the Experts: a roundtable at Indy’s Speak Easy

 

I’m a networking queen. I get excited about learning from people, and I get ecstatic about meeting new professionals. (helloooo extrovert!) So, it should come as no surprise that about a week ago I seized the opportunity to stop by The Speak Easy in Indy and connect with local professionals. The panel included the amazing guests you’ll see below and the discussion centered on the theme of branding. 

Panelests

 

Panelists from left: Molly Chavers, IndyHub, Lawrence McGlown, GetSayDo, Amy McAdams Gonzales, Well Done Marketing, Ryan Hunley, Second Street Creative & Issac Arthur, CODO Designs

 

Here are a few takeaways I found really valuable:

  1. Branding is so much more than a logo and a look. When done right, the most successful brands are derived by exploring the shared stories, common mission and goals of the organization. The narrative is able to piece together the history, accomplishments and culture which then is applied to create branding elements, aka your logo.
  • Take away: Break down the barriers of communication and dissect the story. Then you’ll be prepared to make decisions about visual assets.
  1. Ask the right questions. This is one of the best tips in any category, but especially from the vantage point of a consultant ushering in a new brand. I found this part of the conversation to be very enlightening, especially as the panelists started referencing the people that sit at the discussion table. When an initiative to rebrand begins, it’s important to identify the right people who (a) have the power to approve changes, (b) are influences within the company, and (c) can help articulate that organization’s story.
  • Take away: Start with a large group and narrow the table. When acting as a consultant overseeing a rebrand, there’s no such thing as too much information.
  1. Have a plan – because what else would you expect from a strategist?! Branding is a process for a company of any size, and the best way to revamp or recreate a brand that is well-received by your target audience, it’s important to have a solid plan outlining the process. Discovery of the brand voice is key, that will help your team identify core values and position your brand. With that information teams can move into the visual stage complete with mood boarding, the creation of visual assets and, typically, the creation of a style guide. But that’s not all, strategy also has to translate into the introduction and rollout of the new brand. The experience that consumers will have is arguably the single most important factor as to if they will frequent your brand or abandon your brand.
  • Take away: Strategy should guide your brand from idea to inception through adoption.

Outside of an awesome panel, The Speak Easy is a pretty incredible venue. Here are a few photos I’ll leave you with!

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