"Companies shouldn’t be searching for creativity alone, they should be looking for an agency that has proven it knows how to help them connect with consumers and build long lasting relationships".

Settembre 25, 20235 Minuti

The Evolution of Consumer Design and the Birth of Brand Value

Decades ago, when I started doing whatever it is I’m still doing, consumer design was a pretty straightforward thing. Italy was still a fairly unsophisticated low-competition marketplace. Awareness drove sales and advertising drove awareness. The density of advertising in Italy during the time was among the greatest in the world.
It made our job as designers pretty easy. Identity design was mostly about making the product stand out and the ad agencies ran the show.
Marketing still believed in USP’s, special offers and promotions to drive sales which was all that mattered back then. All we creatives had to do was make everything bigger and apply “New and improved” whenever we could. It was all about sales and had nothing to do with branding.
Branding as we know it today was not invented by some visionary creative agency. We worked on things called trademarks until the late 70’s when some Wall Street accountants realized they could add a new asset to the company balance sheet.
They called it “brand value”, an intangible item potentially worth billions. For Coca-Cola it became more valuable than their physical assets and sales combined.

The True Role of Agencies in Building Brands

I’ve read a lot of bullshit lately from self proclaimed brand gurus about how to make successful brands. But agencies don’t create brands, visionary companies do by creating things that people want. Our role is simply to make them more appealing to a broader market and add perceived value. It has as much to do with analytical thinking as it does the creative process.
We work in a very unique industry. We are called upon to develop something intangible but still have to determine a very concrete price for our work. The bizarre thing is that we have to establish a fixed fee before developing an idea that often adds enormous value to our client’s brands.
The general rule in calculating brand value lies in trying to estimate the premium that a consumer is willing to pay over a similar generic product or a competitor. It’s an evaluation which in the end is established by the consumer. They are the ones that decide how much or how little a company’s biggest asset is worth.
Unfortunately many companies are too obsessed with themselves to focus on the consumers perception of what they offer. What does their brand mean? How can their brand occupy a place in the emotional life a person? It’s not about sales, it’s about building a reputation.
It requires insight, experience and often plain common sense.
This is why choosing the right agency is so important. Top agencies like ours don’t simply sell creativity. We sell insight, strategy, ideas and knowhow.

Two Decades of Building Reputation: Our unique approach to creativity and connecting with consumers

Our reputation has been built over two decades by the hundreds of people that have each contributed to our diversity, knowledge and culture of collaboration. Evolving from the unique opportunities we’ve had of working for hundreds of brands on thousands of projects around the world. All this has given us a precious insight far beyond what many other agencies can offer and what most marketing departments could possibly have access to.
Companies shouldn’t be searching for creativity alone, they should be looking for an agency that has proven it knows how to help them connect with consumers and build long lasting relationships. Feel free to give us a call for a chat.

To read more articles from this month’s Touchpoint magazine go to: https://www.touchpoint.news/2023/09/25/

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Drew Smith

An award winning designer and an expert in consumer brand management, NPD and packaging design with over twenty years of experience. Canadian by birth, he has been the Creative Director of several leading international consultancies and is a graduate of Art Center College of Design and Sheridan College, School of Visual Arts.