What does brand do?
The anatomy of a brand
A brand is split into your visual brand or brand identity which includes your logo, colour palette, imagery, icons, shapes and so on.
It also includes your brand strategy which is how we achieve alignment and increase the high quality leads you receive via your marketing. The brand strategy looks at why your business exists and what you hope to achieve (beyond making money).
Successful brands in action
Give a Grad a Go is an example of a recruitment brand that achieves alignment and enablement for the agency.
Their brand resonates with a younger audience, using a witty and youthful tone. This is reflected visually using a fun and vibrant design system with nostalgic undertones. Their communication and overall look appeals to their demographic and their audience feels connected to the brand – making Give A Grad A Go their recruitment agency of choice.
In turn, graduate employers are attracted to Give A Grad because they want access to the best pool of candidates which Give A Grad A Go attracts.
Bond Global is a recruiter that works in the deep and clean tech sectors. They have a very different demographic to Give A Grad A Go and target senior candidates for innovative roles in rapidly growing companies.
Bond Global align with their audience by dovetailing the reason that their agency exists and what they do with the reason that their client companies exist. For example, Bond uses key messaging such as “We’re here for the visionaries” and “There’s no planet B” which speaks directly to their clients who work in renewables, clean energy and environmentally positive technology companies that are innovating to clean up the planet.
In finding the meeting point between their business and their clients, fast growing and well funded companies in these industries choose Bond Global over competitor agencies. Of course, their messaging also attracts the best talent in the industry who also believe in building brighter futures and driving positive change.
Visually, we collaborated with Bond Global to interlock their design aesthetic with their values and the businesses that they want to attract. The use of dark base colours with vibrant pops of colour represent their key brand themes – technology, futuristic, environmental, big picture mindset. They use large zoomed out environmental imagery and layer this with other brand assets to make it uniquely theirs.
How to achieve brand alignment for your agency
If this is your first time looking at your brand strategy, don’t let perfect be the enemy of the good. Many Marketing Managers who have undertaken brand strategy work before will know that it’s very easy to invest a lot of time in workshopping this stuff and get very little out of the other side.
Success in this area is coming out the other side with a clearer idea of your positioning and who you’re targeting. This is enough to enable you and your team to consistently communicate who you are, who you work with and the direction of the business. Getting something more than you have right now is the initial goal.
Finding your why
We find that focusing on finding your why is the best place to start when embarking on your brand strategy journey. There’s a fantastic TED talk by Simon Sinek that defines this well. By focusing on the discrete areas of why, how and what you do, you can refine your value proposition and how you should communicate with your audience.
Developing your personas and archetypes
Brand identity is something that a lot of SMEs do badly and this is the same within the recruitment industry.
Combining brand elements
A good brand identity combines the individual elements of your brand such as the colours, shapes, patterns, typography etc in a way that looks uniquely branded to your agency. Businesses with good branding are able to utilise stock photography in their marketing and brand it in a way that looks like it’s theirs.
The goal is to remove blockers that prevent your team from implementing their marketing strategy and to visually stand out from competitors.
Brand offers a huge opportunity to win new businesses, especially in the recruitment industry where brand is typically done badly. Stand out in your market by focusing on your audience and thinking about how you can align with them and achieve resonance. Reflect the outcomes of your strategy process in your brand identity for a cohesive and enabling final brand.
- Define your target audience and built target archetypes
- Align your brand strategy and identity around these audiences
- Dig deeper into your ‘why’ and how this meets the why of your clients and candidates
- Enable your team with clear messaging and a visual design system