Brand Immersion: The Key to Creating a Cohesive Brand Identity
Marketing has changed in recent years. The way we sell has to be different because the way that we buy is different.
Clients and consumers now have the gift of choice. This is true for every sector. The market for just about anything is oversaturated. There are hundreds of businesses doing the exact same thing. If a brand doesn’t align with a purchaser’s precise requirements or exact set of values, you don’t need to look far to find a competitor that fits the bill.
That means that branding has become a far more significant stage of business development. It also means that marketing and branding agencies need a much better understanding of the clients that they take on. And that’s where brand immersion comes in.
What is brand immersion?
Brand immersion is the process of an agency fully immersing themselves in a client’s world. It involves in-depth research into the client that they take on; into who they are and what they do, the products or services they sell, the clients or customers they’re selling to, the sector they operate in and even the competitors that operate in the same field.
Brand immersion could involve in-depth market research, digging in deep to thoroughly understand the client. It could even involve a more hands-on approach, with the agency interacting physically with the services offered by their client.
What could a business expect from brand immersion?
This kind of brand immersion could look like the agency trying out the product itself, but would often run deeper. It would involve the agency meeting with the team, but this wouldn’t just be limited to meetings.
Imagine the agency seeing the production line and learning the exact process involved in creating their products. Or the agency visiting venues for a hospitality chain, speaking with the actual team who are working rather than only communicating with the marketing executives.
The nature of digital marketing is, of course, digital. But that doesn’t mean the physical reality of a brand and their product or service is any less important. Brand immersion allows agencies to develop a unique, more personal experience with the brands, but it also usually involves travel. Agency teams must go out of their way, travelling across the UK or even on occasion to other countries - it takes a huge amount of effort and commitment on both parties. But the results are worth it.
Building a cohesive brand
One of the main benefits of brand immersion is that it removes the possibility of disconnect between brand and agency.
For agencies, it’s exciting to take on new clients. We enjoy sinking our teeth into new projects and new work. Every good, reputable agency should treat their client’s brand with care and careful consideration. For clients, this period is also exciting, but it comes with a degree of anxiety because they are entrusting the business they have so carefully built and invested so much into with a new team of people.
There’s margin for human error: where the agency misinterprets an essential part of a brand; where an agency misconstrues their brief; when the brand itself misunderstands a service that’s offered; when communication fails, or it’s simply a case of not providing adequate resources for the agency to properly understand a brand or its mission.
When this occurs, it can result in a disconnect. Think of a disjointed brand identity, where your digital presence doesn’t quite align with your physical. Think of a website that doesn’t match up with the rest of your marketing tools. Worst case, imagine a perfectly cohesive set of marketing materials - that don’t actually match up with the vision you had for your business.
Why your brand identity actually matters
Maintaining a cohesive brand identity across all of your marketing materials - your website, social channels, email communications, even offline materials like brochures or business cards - is so important.
Firstly, your branding is your first impression. Secondly, it’s a lasting one. Having strong, cohesive branding is imperative in making your brand recognisable and memorable - in fact, it can even encourage brand loyalty as customers and clients are more likely to remember your brand and choose it over competitors.
Brand trust can also be boosted simply by having high-quality, aesthetically pleasing branding and brand materials, like logos, websites, fonts and graphic design images. Quality, strong and thoughtful branding can help to prove that your business is authoritative and professional, but it can also demonstrate your values, ethos and wider mission as a brand. This is particularly important, given that 71% of consumers prefer choosing brands that align with their values.
Clever, careful branding is absolutely vital. So, to go back to our earlier point: what happens if an agency misinterprets what your brand stands for? What if they get it wrong?
Why brand immersion is key to creating a cohesive brand
Brand immersion negates the possibility of an agency getting it all wrong. Email communication, Zoom calls and even face-to-face meetings leave room for error. People can easily misinterpret the same set of values, or have different perspectives of what the brand’s mission really entails.
With the process of immersion, an agency can truly understand the values behind a brand. When we immerse ourselves in the world of your unique brand, we’ll come to understand its individual beliefs and behaviours, the story behind your brand that makes it what it is today. Its history and its future, past and present. Your goals and how you plan to achieve them - and how we can help you devise a brand strategy that does precisely this. Your clients or customers, how they perceive you, and how you want to be perceived. We’ll work with you to find the best way to reach them.
And then we’ll apply what we’ve learned to ensure all of your branding and marketing materials are strong, cohesive, and demonstrate the very best of your brand’s identity.