Design and corporate identity

Whenever you start thinking about corporate material, the question of design will rear its head. i.e do we use a new style; do we buy in someone to help, what style do we use etc. The next step usually is to review your corporate identity.
Yes, design undoubtedly has a vital role in the presentation and marketing of your organisation.

It is a key means for you to try and distinguish yourself from your competition. It is also a way to reveal your organisations’ “personality.” Traditionally the mix of your identity and house style will feature on your logo and corporate ID such as letters & faxes (if you still use fax!) as well as documents, proposals, stationary, leave behinds, creds presentations etc.

Under such circumstances it is crucial that any review comes from the person at the top of your organisation and, in Bath Marketing Consultancy’s opinion, that high quality outside professionals are brought in to handle the exercise. The need for authority inside and outside your organisation is because this operation is almost certain to result in proposals for some sort of change and this “change” may not be something everyone wants to undertake.

So…if you are to go down the professional route, a full and clear brief must be given to the company selected. This brief should focus on the personality of your business i.e. what does your brand stand for? Remember that design should work at an emotional and rational level so try and consider these aspects in your brief. It might even be worth collecting (subtly!) examples of what your competitor’s literature looks like as well as other examples from different sectors you like. When Bath Marketing Consultancy puts together initiatives like websites or marketing literature, we always do an audit of the existing material and then ask for a steer from clients as to what they like before putting together initial design ideas.

I would always advocate listening to the rationale from your designer and then taking a long term view when making decisions. I am all too aware of the difficulties of decision by committee, but make sure that your designer has identified who you are and what you stand for.
One area Bath Marketing Consultancy tends to insist on is some sort of style guide for a signed off logo which gives consistency across ongoing marketing material……and stops staff playing with the designs!

Finally, marketing initiatives like brochures might have a long shelf life so my suggestion would be to keep names of personnel out of the design (unless the details are yours and you own the business!).

Good luck!


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