It’s a new year and we’ve been busy bees! We’ve decided to a break from our productivity bee-dances (this metaphor is happening) and share with y’all a couple of 2017 accomplishments that have us buzzing with pride and excited to get going in the new year. These accomplishments? Our rebrand and our expansion of services.
We were able to catch our fearless leader, David Smith, for a chat about rebranding, teamwork, and what inbound marketing can do for your business in 2018.
In 2001, Envision started out with a specific purpose. What was that purpose and how do you feel the rebrand has supported or evolved that original intention?
David Smith: Our original goal was to offer the highest quality design and branding services to help solve a client’s unique business problem. In our opinion, designing something beautiful or creative just for the sake of being beautiful or creative, fails if it doesn’t solve a specific challenge. We vowed to always keep that end goal in mind (and still do) as we develop creative solutions for our clients to ensure they receive the greatest return on investment possible.
How involved was the Envision team in the concept for the rebrand? What did you feel was the most crucial element of their involvement in the process?
DS: After many internal meetings discussing who we are as an agency, where we started, and how we’ve evolved, the design and web team created the visual aspect of the new brand and the marketing team created the messaging and organization of content on our website. It was critical to have the team weigh in and take part in the process so that the final rebrand was a reflection of our agency as a whole, as opposed to just my own interpretation of who we are. We have evolved as an agency and it is not about the ideas or thoughts of just one person. Our new brand needed to reflect that comprehensiveness.
What are some signs that businesses can look out for that may indicate it’s time for them to refresh their own brand?
DS: Here are some things to think about when considering a rebrand:
- How old is your current logo/brand and can it benefit from an update to match the current styles?
- Does your current brand position you with a perception of value that appeals to your ideal target audience(s)?
- Is your website older and possibly outdated?
- Have you recently made any changes to your customer offering, pricing, and/or positioning?
- Are you trying to reach a new target audience segment or demographic?
Why is branding so important?
DS: Branding is more than a logo or a website. Branding is the promise you make to your customers/clients about your company and the services and/or products you offer to them. Branding is perception of value. It helps establish your positioning in the marketplace which allows people to identify where you fit in the competitive landscape. If done correctly, this instills confidence in your potential buyers.
How does the new brand fit into the evolution of Envision Creative as a whole?
DS: Over the last 16 years, Envision Creative has evolved and grown along with our customer base. From our start as a design and branding shop, to expanding into full strategy and execution of marketing services (both digital and traditional), we have found our place catering to the growing needs of the SMB marketplace, both nationally and internationally.
Our new visual identity and overall branding is a direct reflection of the growth that led us towards a comprehensive agency approach. It’s a brand that is understated and sophisticated yet bold, and portrays confidence in our ability to service a growing customer base.
Envision has spent the last 5 years working on its Inbound Marketing services and has even partnered with inbound marketing powerhouse, HubSpot. What spurred this? What were the biggest challenges?
DS: As an agency hell-bent on providing the best damn client services possible, we found ourselves asking the question, “How can we provide even more value to our clients?” That question led us to research all the ways we could help achieve client goals that go beyond the creation of a design or web deliverable and moves into the realm of comprehensive strategies that generate measurable ROI through lead generation.
One of the biggest challenges was mastering the tactics to deliver the kind of results our clients deserve. To compensate for the inevitable ramp-up period, we dedicated a full year to using Envision as a test client to learn from and master inbound services before engaging a single client account. This allowed us to make mistakes and quickly learn what did and didn’t work so we could apply those findings to our clients from day one.
How does inbound marketing fit into an overall marketing strategy?
DS: We like to say that inbound is just another tool in our marketing belt. It’s not the sole foundation we are building the company on, but when a client comes to us with a need for more leads and customers, it offers us a great way to provide results.
Branding is the core foundation that needs to be in place, but utilizing inbound marketing for the right kind of clients can assist them in gaining greater ROI from those branding initiatives. And we now have everything in-house to deliver on all fronts.
What is your top piece of advice for businesses looking to add inbound marketing to their lead generation strategy?
DS: Ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I need more leads?
- Do I have a product or service that is a higher ticket item and usually involves research on the buyer’s part prior to purchasing?
- Do I have 6 months to 1 year to dedicate towards investing in this inbound initiative?
- There’s some low-hanging fruit we can take advantage of quickly, but it takes time to develop and execute the kind of strategic, ongoing inbound marketing plan that’s extremely effective.
- Do I have the time to actively participate in the ongoing planning and execution?
- While we do the heavy lifting, you can expect to be answering questions, reviewing content, and approving evaluated metrics. This kind of cooperative relationship is essential to delivering on the ROI of inbound.
- Does my internal sales staff have the capacity to actively engage with the quantity of new leads that will begin funneling to them?
What are you looking forward to trying in 2018?
DS: We’re looking to continually evaluate and improve our processes for better effectiveness and efficiency, but more specifically, we are looking at the role AI and automated chatbot workflows will be playing into our strategies in the coming year.
We’re very excited to kick off the new year with some new clients and a new look. Follow our adventures by subscribing to our blog and following us on social.