Just been reading two different Wally Olins books on branding. “Brand New” and “The Brand Handbook”

Think my attitude before was a bit cynical and wrong along the lines of “that is something you do to cattle”. As Mr Olins wrote its more about authenticity and ties in with the way the firm is seen socially. I made me think about some of these ideas and perhaps rethink a little.

Its more than just a logo

Branding should be more than just a logo in fact the ethos of the brand. In a small organisation that may a reflection of the owner. In a larger company it might be the founders think the Cadbury family and their Quaker ethos and then the changes in perception and the uproar caused when they got taken over by Kraft. The brand is reinforced or damaged by how consistently the company acts. If all you do is change the logo from green to red or the name and nothing else changes its pointless.

Behavioural Consistency

If you say it do it, don’t say one thing and do another or claim to be something you aren’t. So Wally cites the example of Ryan Air as being and doing what the say on the tin. They aren’t saying we are the the worlds most luxurious or helpful airline. They are cheap flights if you follow their rules to the letter. If you don’t they will charge you for it. Its consistent and it goes throughout the organisation from the top Michael O’Leary, joking about charging for using the toilet to the abrasive people at the airport. That way even the newspaper reports reinforce their branding.

So perhaps as he sees it its more than using the corporate colors and elements consistently whilst that is important branding can be more of a holistic thing encompassing the organisations attitudes and aims.

Seemed worth reading to me of course I skimmed a little but worthwhile to read the thoughts of someone who did branding for 50 odd years.