Your brand is the backbone of your business. It influences how your business communicates to the market, as well as how it is perceived by your customers. To implement such a vital system, having the right branding agency is key. Here’re five important things to consider when you’re choosing your branding agency:
1. How well do they understand your business?
This is the most important thing to learn about your shortlisted agencies. While many agencies will be able to showcase an impressive body of past work and an impressive client list, you must go beyond that to probe their business acumen. Don’t be swayed by beautiful visuals – that’s the easy part. Finding a solution for your business is the challenge. Does your agency have the ability to understand your customers, your industry and your position in the market? Will they prioritise their strategy and design process with these elements, or will they focus on themselves and let creating visually aesthetic designs take centre stage?
2. How creative are they?
There’s never one right solution when it comes to branding – or any other creative project for that matter. Picking an agency that’s able to give you fresh and creative solutions will enable your business to stand out from the competition, stay relevant and identify both weaknesses and strengths in your brand. You’ll want to study their portfolio and evaluate how innovative, attractive and fresh their work is. You’ll also want to consider how their past projects have fared, compared to other brands in similar industries. At the end of the day, you want an agency with a deep understanding of branding, design and marketing trends.
3. How have they performed previously?
Any agency worth its salt should be able to show you what their past results look like. Think in terms of tangible results. While the term ROI has been used to death, it’s certainly relevant in this context. Can your agency provide detailed case studies to measure the success of their previous branding projects? Can they prove better market receptivity after a new packaging design? Can they provide you with evidence? These questions will aid you in better understanding what their past results were like, and give you a clearer indication of what the agency values in terms of success.
4. What is their methodology like?
Branding involves a methodical process, and most agencies will have their own protocol. Some may have even trademarked or named their processes with cheesy catchphrases. This offers you a glimpse into your prospective agency’s methodology. If they’re not upfront about the way they plan to work with you, ask about it. Almost all branding projects will start with a creative or project brief, so ask to see a sample brief. Don’t be afraid to delve deeper into how your agency works.
5. How versatile is the agency?
Many agencies rely on a bevy of freelancers to complete certain aspects of their projects. Not all competencies an agency has may be in-house. That’s why you’ll want to know which capabilities are internal and which are outsourced – because agencies usually control their consistency and quality better with in-house capabilities. The more work they can handle in-house, the better.
Choosing the right branding agency isn’t an easy and straightforward task. Do as much research as you can on your shortlisted candidates, ask for references and study their past work. Above all, you must have confidence in and like the people you’re going to work with. After all, it’s going to be a working relationship with at least a medium-term commitment.
Did you know that the Singapore Government is helping local companies with up to 80% of their branding initiatives? We’ve helped our Singapore clients do just that, and we can do that for you as well. To find out more about the Enterprise Development Grant (EDG), get in touch with us today.