To celebrate our new brand, David Bardell, our executive creative director, has delved into the whys and hows of creating a dynamic brand.
What is a dynamic brand?
In a basic sense it’s a brand with more energy that can show change, movement and flexibility. Dynamic brands are often called living brands, because they physically change or move, reflecting the very definition of dynamism.
Why does a brand need to be living?
If you start with the premise that a brand is a relationship you have with anyone that comes into contact with you then it needs to ‘do’ an awful lot more in this connected world than it ever has before.
Marketing is increasingly about creating a platform for like-minded people to come together, to create their own communities and to form emotional attachments to something. A brand needs to connect in different ways with different audiences; it needs to represent a lot.
A dynamic brand has the ability to be more emotional and express some of the many facets of an organisation, giving it opportunity to do this more effectively.
Why did we change our brand?
Everything changes. The entire world and everything we do changes daily. That includes our work, its aims, the people and ideas involved in it. But particularly in the creative industries, we should be modern, forward-thinking, agents of change almost; in fact, pretty damn dynamic.
So how did we get there?
Any brand has to be authentic and reflective of whom you are as a company. If it’s not, it will fail. Fast. So the first thing we did was check in on ourselves with an open mind.
We started with discovering the personal values of every person in the company and then worked out where the common ground was. Then we worked on what the vision might be for a place with these values – what sort of change would we, as a group of people, like to see in the world? We wanted to be people that made a purposeful difference and create impact. And that’s where the dynamism began to influence our ideas.
Our own purpose stems from a history of creating success for purpose-driven brands. Housing associations and charities with a solid purpose need to find new ways to put their commercial hat on and increase efficiencies. And commercial companies who lack the differentiation to attract their market are increasingly seeking to find and communicate their purpose to give them an edge.
We bridge gaps. We join the unjoined dots, and help you, our clients, to articulate their purpose, engage their audiences, influence opinion, shape perceptions, shift behaviour, manage change and grow. So being dynamic – flexible, multi-skilled and able to adapt to client needs – is essential.
When we boil it down, our purpose is helping you find and achieve yours.
How can a dynamic brand practically work?
It’s a common assumption that a dynamic brand means lots of different logos and therefore your brand is diluted and become less recognisable.
This is where the balance comes in; people have to know they’re looking at your brand every time they see your logo; arguably more so if it’s always different from the last one they saw.
So what’s the answer? Keep some things tied down and set others free.
For instance, we’ve fixed two elements of our logo. The first one is the word marque. You’ll notice it stays the same in all iterations, and therefore, becomes our recognised foundation. This enables us to play with the rest of the logo and let it help express what we want to say. We can place pretty much anything on top of it, as long as it conforms to our other constraint; that it creates a bridge of a certain size and shape.
Our bridges represent the joining of a gap between where you are and where you want to be. So as you can imagine, that could be a lot of different concepts; representing something about you, our clients, our values, our actions, or us. It gives us a brand with limitless potential for change.
We’re out to do something a bit braver, more actionable, and yes, more dynamic. And that’s why we have a new, dynamic brand. One that says “Nice to professionally speak to you” but also says “look at this boingy thing”.
There’s a lot of pressure on the shoulders of your brand today; so give it a break. If it suits who you are, let it be both professional and fun, let it be serious and let it muck about a bit. There’s a lot of power in that.
Whatever your brand, let it live.