Opinion | Making a mark in brand new age | Christina Gerakiteys

Traditionally, branding was the result of multiple campaigns, creative imagination and high monetary investment, all shaken and stirred with a bit of luck.

Branding meant cementing your logo and jingle in the minds of your target market (now referred to as your customer segment) and attracting and retaining them as loyal customers.

The debate continues as to whether today’s customers are savvier or more fickle. Businesses have to work harder to win clients and there is no guarantee they will stay with you when tempted by a better offer. Or a cooler competitor. Or a new fad.

In today’s business environment, the way we present ourselves to clients takes precedence over superficial wooing.

Tricky Jigsaw, a design consultancy, took out the top spot in the AFR Most Innovative Companies List 2017 with a product they developed for the NRMA. The Fire Blanket sensor network is an early warning system for bushfires and will potentially save lives, properties and anguish. Welcome to new age branding.

Branding has a new methodology; build a product that provides a community service or solves a societal problem and use it to create customer loyalty.

It’s sponsorship with greater impact.

This makes way more sense than throwing money at the production of an entertaining campaign.

Branding is extending beyond the corporate and business world. We are branding races (Park Run), individuals (Tony Robbins) and even cities. Newcastle is in the throes of branding itself as an innovation and education centre.

The common denominator is the lean into vision and values, ethics and behaviors.

Where once your brand was your logo, now your logo is only part of your brand. Branding is every way you present to the world: from colours, and shapes, to websites and social, communications and distributions, and collaborations and ethics.

It seems more complicated, yet if you’re on purpose, it’s easier to achieve and exciting to put into practice.

A first for Newcastle, The Brand Summit will be a forum for discussion on branding with intent and impact. Speakers will share their experiences of best branding practices for the 21st Century, covering product, service and the branding of the city. It’s on November 2.

Information: humanitix.com/event/brandsummit. 

Christina Gerakiteys is a creativity and innovation expert and founder of Ideation At Work