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Brand Profiling & Positioning
A business without customers in no longer a business. Branding is about winning and keeping customers. It’s about influencing choice.
Brand profiling and positioning is the process used to influence customer choice. It’s the system used to make your brand highly visible, different, memorable and much loved by your ideal target customer.
A strong brand makes it clear to both you and your customer what you have to offer and why that matters to them. The best brands create a special relationship with customers based on intangible qualities that evoke strong emotional responses in their customers.
These strong emotional responses are what get and keep customers. Brand profiling and positioning is the codifying process used to attract your ideal customers and develop those strong emotional bonds. We use our Persona Brand Building Blueprint™ System to attract and keep your perfect customers because this is what builds highly visible, long lasting, profitable brands.
Branding involves a wide range of aspects but most importantly your brand is the cornerstone or foundation of your business. You start with your brand promise and it leads and drives your business to ensure an ongoing successful financial return.
A great brand helps you build a powerful and enduring relationship with your customer and provides a solid basis for a successful business. It ensures that everything you do and say supports that relationship and encourages choice. It’s about being remarkable, talked about, different, distinctive and memorable to ensure your message is successfully diffused throughout the market place and ultimately increases profitable sales.
The key reasons for branding a product or service properly are:
• To create memorable distinction, difference and convey value
• To create consumer recognition and trust
• To build brand loyalty
• To increase sales and profitability
• Creates sustainable competitive advantage
• Reduce margin erosion and commoditization
• Leverage new product introductions
• Create a valuable IP (intellectual property) asset when seeking investment or selling a business
Should I Brand?
Every business has a brand, strong or weak. In developing either a new brand or reassessing an established brand it’s important to develop a thorough understanding of the business currently and the vision for the business into the future, in order to generate an appropriate brand profile for that business.
You should tackle your brand whether you have a new business getting established or if you have difficulty in winning or keeping customers (or even attracting their attention in the first place).
Some of the typical reasons why clients come to us for their branding are:
• they have a great product or service but struggle to say what makes them different.
• being dragged into a price war (where only the one with the deepest pockets can win).
• others have a great relationship with their customers and want to keep it that way by carefully nurturing their brand through its ongoing communications with their customers.
• losing business to the competition.
This is where branding really comes into its own. A great brand helps you stand out in your market and stand up to the competition.
What is a Brand Profile?
A brand is best understood as representing the relationship between a business and its customers, it’s an experience and emotional connection. It’s the reason why a person buys one product instead of another i.e. it’s what makes your brand first choice. Brand profiling is the process used to codify and map out your brand resulting in your own specific brand blueprint to stand out, attract your ideal customers and build a lasting relationship with them so you can grow your profits.
People relate to other people (not with systems or organisations) and great businesses typically enjoy relationships with their clients that are experienced at both personal and professional levels. It’s what their customers remember and say about them. It’s what leads to lasting impressions, preferences and performance.
In short, brands are the most effective way of cutting through the noise to reach people’s hearts and minds. The purpose of a brand profile is to describe that narrative space (or story) between a business and its customers and to outline the role that the brand plays in that connection to make it real, tangible, measurable highly visible, loveable and unforgettable.
The objectives for codifying your brand, also known as your brand model or brand profile, are so you have your own unique brand road map or blueprint to stand out and attract your ideal customers because this is what enables you to grow your business and command a premium. The outcomes from this process provide the essential building blocks for your business and direction for:
Strategic direction for the marketing activities
Distinction within the business’s market
Inspiration for the creative delivery of the marketing messages
This is a two-day brand building intensive shared with a small group of like-minded peers where you work on your brand with our leadership. In fact, over the two days, you reevaluate your brand, codify it and create your brand strategy from the ground up whether you’re revitalising an existing brand or creating a new one.
This is a highly empowering workshop where we take a deep dive, step-by-step into how to build a brand. You discover and apply the systems and methodologies used by some of the world’s greatest brands as you work on your brand under Lorraine Carter’s direction and tutelage so you can grow your own brand and business.
This is not a theory based program but a highly interactive fast-track course where you work intensively on your brand throughout the programme duration using our ten step system to:
Completely re-evaluate your brand to make it much stronger so it’s highly visible enabling you to increase your profits
Map out your brand in full so it’s codified and comprehensively documented to grow your business faster
You leave with your total brand road map or GPS of your brand empowering you to manage your brand, stand out and attract your ideal customers so you multiply your sales
Ring us to discuss your brand building preferences
Just drop us a line to[email protected]or give us a call T: +353 1 8322724 (GMT 9:00 – 17:00) to discuss your preferences and we’ll develop your brand building intensive bespoke to your particular brand requirements so that you’re empowered to build your brand.
1) A clear understanding and expression of what the business offers, how the business delivers it and what it means for their customers, partners and key audiences i.e. the strengths of the brand, how to play to them and where to position the brand in the territories where the business operates.
2) Key strategic do’s and don’ts for brand behaviour and communications that will enable the planning of brand activities, launches and communications congruent with core brand signature and character as part of the business development strategy.
3) A basis on which to design and develop the brand identity and all the visual communication and creative requirements, such as brand name, brand identity, advertising, brand packaging, collateral and website etc.
Typically a client can expect the following benefits from working with us:
4) A clear sense of where you stand in your markets and what works best for your brand, particularly in terms of how to define, develop and grow your business, and describe what it does in a way that makes sense for your customers and partners.
5) A distinctive framework to enable you to establish a strategic and defendable positioning in the market(s) where you operate.
6) A robust and objective basis for planning the management and design of activities required to achieve your brand and business growth objectives.
What is Brand Positioning?
Positioning focuses on the perceptions of the prospect not on the reality of the brand. To succeed in our over-communicated society, a company must create a “position” for their brand, be it product or service, in the prospect’s mind. A position that takes into consideration not only its own strength and weaknesses but those of its competitors as well.
Positioning is not what you do to the product; it’s what you do in the mind of the prospect. In a rapidly changing world of endless choice, positioning is how you clearly differentiate your brand in the mind of your customer to assist choice. Positioning is used to compensate for the endless information overload experienced by consumers in their daily lives by using an oversimplified message to cut through the clutter and get into the mind. In essence, it’s the nuts and bolts of the brand upon which the brand message or story is built. Some of the most powerful brands stand for simple but extraordinary ideas e.g. FedEx – parcel delivery, Google – internet search, Red Bull – energy drink, Volvo – safety, Tiffanys – expensive luxury, Wal Mart – cheap, Ballygowan – water.
We select our brands based on their position in our minds and whether they match how we feel about ourselves. Brands help define who we are. Brands that try to attract everyone end up appealing to no one and when a brand no longer stands for something clearly identifiable, it loses its power. Therefore positioning must be focussed in its objectives, on its target market and what meets their specific needs to be successful.
What Makes up a Brand?
Branding is made up of tangibles and intangibles. The tangible aspects are the functional characteristics of a brand, the unique and identifiable symbol, association, name or trademark which differentiates competing products or services e.g. Persona Design brand logo.
A logo in itself is not and never will be a brand.It is simply an icon that indicates its existence, a system used to indicate a clear and consistent voice for your product or service. It doesn’t change who you are; it just amplifies how you are perceived by others. Your identity in conjunction with your brand helps people understand who you are and what you offer.
The intangibles aspects, arguably as important or in some cases more important, are the emotional characteristics of a brand which is the sum of an organization’s attributes including it’s; name, history, reputation, personality, culture, full sensory customer interaction or experience, packaging and advertising, in short all forms of communication.
Branding is a living entity which means all touch points, both physical or the more elusive sensory or cultural experience, must be congruent with core brand values and positioning. Being a familiar name takes you miles closer to closing a sale. People like to buy from companies they’ve heard of. They make decisions, rational and irrational, based on emotional connections. They are the critical wild card in the transaction process. Do they like somebody or not in order to do business with them or buy from them, assuming the product meets the basic prerequisites of functionality, market need, quality and service. These intangibles can never be under estimated and should be carefully managed and nurtured.
Contradictory as it may seem branding is both an art and a science, and therein lies the challenge. Branding is a complex process. It’s not just a logo, advertising, websites, brochures or packaging. It’s stories that spread, its editorial content, it’s high-quality content blogs, it’s company seminars or trade show presence, it’s clever direct mail communications and point of sale. It’s creating movements, using engaging humour or emotion and surprising people, it’s the brand ambassadors of your company i.e. your management team and staff and how they dress, communicate and represent your brand, it even includes vocal intonation, interactions and facial expressions.
When someone stands up in front of a crowd at a political rally, in a seminar or in a church, they’re marketing their brand. Politicians and celebrities market their brand offering every time they speak up at a press conference or in an interview. Clever branding delivers consistently across all communication channels, amplifies brand personality, reinforces confidence and converts clients and customers into loyal advocates while building even stronger emotional connectivity every day.
Brand Profiling and Brand Positioning
Taking a business’s current position as a starting point, we survey the market-space where they plan to do business and identify a position and approach to business that will stand out from the competition now and into the future.
Our role is to guide you the proprietor, business owner, entrepreneur, consultant and your management team in your choice of position; yours is to direct the brand, manage business growth and protect this invaluable asset by taking actions that carefully match your position and offering with what your customers want and need.
A well-managed and well-protected brand quickly becomes the most valuable intellectual property asset in a business and adds dramatically to the commercial value of the business whether you pass it on as a valuable legacy to your nearest and dearest, sell it for millions or seek further investment in it.
There are typically five key initial aspects that should be reviewed;
1) Research the business’s current market, competitors, trends and NPD opportunities
At the end of the process proprietors, business owners, consultants, entrepreneurs and management should have a much clearer sense of where they stand in their markets and what works best for their brand, particularly in terms of how to define, develop and grow their market and ultimately generate a profitable return consistently while sustaining a competitive edge.
Do you want to make your brand stand out as a highly recognised, memorable and much-loved name?
Alternatively, if you want in-person professional direction with expert input to codify your brand and develop your brand road map to grow your business and would like to discuss working with us then give us a call T: +353 1 8322724 (GMT hours 9:00-17:00) or drop us a line to [email protected]. We’d be delighted to talk with you.
Got a question or need some help with your brand?
We’re thrilled! Send us a short note and we’ll be in touch.
We do our best to read every message within 48 business hours. We’re kind of obsessive about customer care so if you don’t hear back, that means we didn’t get your message so please do send it again.
“I recently organized a large Business Forum for business owners and stakeholders entitled ‘After the Storm – New Business Opportunities’ to highlight the challenges and changing face of doing business in 2013. I was delighted to engage Lorraine Carter to speak at the Forum as I have seen first hand her expertise in Branding and Design.
More importantly I know Lorraine as a Professional Speaker who delivers not only excellent content but is passionate about the positive financial impact of great branding and design.
Lorraine’s talk entitled ‘Brand Your Way Out of Recession’ was extremely well received. Her clarity, eloquence and use of storytelling evoked clear examples of how both big, medium and even small businesses have reached the top with successful use of effective branding and design.
I’d recommend Lorraine as a Speaker at your next event or conference. She is an expert in what she does but more importantly she is an expert who knows how to speak about it!”
Sharon Cahir | Author Solicitor Lawyers and Leaders Coach and Trainer
“I have had the benefit of working alongside Lorraine Carter with mutual clients and will happily do so again.
Lorraine understands the power of brands for businesses in a way that makes practical sense to businesses. Her dedication to her craft is a great credit to her along with her attention to her clients and the details that matter.
Lorraine understands how to work with people who don’t work with brands on a daily basis and above all Lorraine has a bottom line value orientation. I look forward to continuing working with Lorraine and her team at Persona Branding & Design.”
Dave Gribben Enable Better Business
“The Maguire & Paterson brand was established in 1882 and therefore the rebranding and new packaging had to be managed in a very sensitive and caring manner.
Persona Branding & Design worked very effectively with the M&P management team ensuring that the findings of consumer research were correctly interpreted and factored into the brand revitalization and new range designs. We found their ability to steer us of significant benefit.
Persona Branding & Design also ensured that we kept our focus on core objectives and diplomatically challenged us at various stages on our thought process, ensuring that any brand preferences did not stray from the core objectives.
We would have no hesitation in recommending Persona Branding & Design and we would be very pleased to speak with any potential client(s).”
Neil ScaifeHead of Commercial Control | SHS Sales & Marketing Ltd
“Lorraine Carter creates meaningful and immaculately designed brands based on a deep subject matter expertise. She, through Persona Branding & Design, provides a world class professional services for all sized enterprises.
Her understanding of target markets results in memorable and distinctive work that empathises with end customers. Lorraine brings a uniquely positive energy to every meeting that leaves her clients engaged and delighted.
Emmet SavageFounder and CEO | Rubicoin
“Lorraine Carter is a true marketing professional. She is highly creative and has delivered impactful, innovative brand solutions for my business for almost a decade.”
Rita AhernManaging Director | Food Matters
“Persona Branding & Design supports our company with an excellent level of creativity in all areas of branding, design and marketing. They listen, understand and interpret our needs perfectly with a formidable proficiency in execution. It is only fair to say that our company expectations of original briefs have always been exceeded.”
Andy MulloyManaging Director | Connemara Seafoods Ltd
“I have worked with Persona Branding & Design for more than 8 years. They have become an invaluable extension of our team, working with us in a flexible, intelligent and pragmatic way.
Once commissioned, they became part of the business extending their expert opinion and brilliant creative solutions in total harmony with our requirements which has achieved great results. This is important since it is often the detail that can make or break a business relationship. Their work philosophy is the best contract a client can hope to receive.”
Gavin DivillyManaging Director | Cater Hire Ireland Ltd
“Persona Design successfully applied their extensive branding experience from consumer goods directly to an important industrial B2B product range within our organisation. This was pivotal in the formulation of our brand communications strategy which also included design, packaging, point of sale material and brand promotional plan, all of which contributed to a very successful commercial outcome.”
Michael O’DonohueCountry Director | Wavin Ireland Ltd
“Lorraine is an excellent start to finish project manager with tremendous creativity and ability to work budgets and timelines effectively.”
Kelley SpillaneSenior Vice President | Castle Brands
“I can’t say enough about the excellent work that Persona Branding & Design has done for us. They didn’t just look at our design requirements but challenged us to really look at the fundamentals of our brand and our target market.
They fully engaged with our team and questioned our thinking, providing strong guidance when needed to keep us all on track. Not only is their work exceptional but it’s an absolute pleasure to work with them too.
The end product has evoked huge comment from customers and buyers alike as to its thought provoking branding, design and uniqueness, thus putting Country Crest into a whole different zone of marketing.”
Tony Doyle Commercial Director | Country Crest
“Lorraine Carter from Persona Design recently presented at our Dell Social Media Event on the importance of Brand for Corporate and Self. Lorraine provided great tips, many of them thought-provokingfrom her vast experience in developing brands, as an individual, for customers and the importance of building relationships.
I would highly recommend Lorraine as a trusted advisor on Brand Development and Management.”
Joan ByrneSaaS Portfolio Manager EMEA | Dell Inc
“Persona Design has always exceeded the objectives of our briefs. Their level of interaction and creative rigour offering a range of fresh concepts is brilliant.
Apart from being great people to work with, Persona Branding & Design offers an unbeatable combination in their level of service, lateral thinking, attention to detail, strategic focus and commitment to all projects undertaken. They are a key asset within my company and I would be delighted to personally recommend their services.”
Donal KavanaghSales & Marketing Director | Zed Candy Ltd
“Persona Design are very talented brand consultants and packaging design experts. They are knowledgeable, creative and highly dependable. My company has hired them for a number of projects and we have always been very pleased with the results.
In fact, several of their projects for us have won prestigious awards. I highly recommend Persona Branding & Design.”
Mark Andrews IIIChairman of the Board | Castle Brands Inc
“Persona Branding & Design has adroitly managed several of our most important brand design briefs over the past couple of years and in doing so brought a high degree of creativity plus in depth knowledge in dealing with packaging and print suppliers that was vital for the completion of the successful end product.
Their attention to detail and open book costing consistently ensures no surprises on design or origination quotations.”
Gerry MurphyMarketing Director | Robert Roberts Ltd
“I was delighted to be a participant in Lorraine’s Master class on Branding, Packaging and Design. Lorraine has extensive experience is this area and her third party examples of clients she has worked with really drove the message home on the importance of one’s brand and how powerful it can be.
She is passionate in her message and delivers it with conviction. I strongly recommend her as a trainer, speaker in the area of branding, packaging and design as she is truly an expert.”
Margaret Hoctor Personal Coach | Trainer | Mentor and Facilitator
“Persona Design has worked with Wavin on the creation and development of the new branding and marketing collateral for the launch of a new range of premium products.
They worked closely with our commercial team during this period to deliver a fantastic launch, on time and within budget. I would highly recommend Persona Branding & Design to anyone who is looking for a company that adds value through innovative ideas.”
Brendan MurphyCommercial Director Wavin UK & Ireland | Wavin UK Ltd
“Lorraine is a highly experienced and expert marketing professional. That’s just one way of putting it. She is an expert public speaker and her passion for subject matter shines though when she presents on a subject that is obviously close to her heart. Highly professional and credible, she is always looking for the best way to apply her talent for her clients best interest.
Her firm is highly successful in delivering strategic marketing projects for their prestigious client base. I have no hesitation in offering my highest recommendation for Lorraine and her team at Persona Branding & Design”
Paul C DwyerGlobal Cyber Security Expert
“Lorraine’s depth of knowledge in branding is immense. I have attended some of her courses and also see first hand the benefits Persona Branding & Design can bring to a business. I am always happy to recommend Lorraine.”
“I have known of Lorraine’s high quality work for a number of years and in late 2008 I finally had the opportunity to work with her in developing a brand and marketing strategy for an upcoming awards ceremony.
Lorraine patiently guided the team through the process and was excellent in identifying the nuances, do’s and don’ts of our target market. We started out thinking a brand was just a logo but now know better!
Before this however, Lorraine had sat down for coffee on an number of occasions with my colleague and I on a different venture and was very generous with her time and sharing her knowledge. I aim to call on Lorraine many times in the future and look forward to it.”
Ian Lawlor New Business | Lotus Investment Group
“I’d be happy to recommend Lorraine Carter and her company, Persona Branding & Design, to any client who wants an enthusiastic and passionate business partner to produce compelling brands built on a sound strategy.”
Tim HealyMercator Marketing Research
“Lorraine is both highly creative and strategic. Her professional and flexible approach combined with her attention to detail resulted in exceptional work which perfectly met the clients needs. A pleasure to work with. I’d happily recommend her for any brand project!”
Alayne RooneyMarketing Consultant
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Persona Branding & Design Consultants Contact: Lorraine Carter
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