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Announcing Award Winning Work

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Identity, Positioning

Walker Brands is proud to announce four distinct awards for client brand programs:

45_gcakAn Urban Lifestyle Central to Life

To achieve sell-out of the 50 remaining condominium units at Grand Central at Kennedy, Walker commissioned a resident survey to understand what made the project distinctive and appealing. The campaign, “Central to Life,” and a refreshed brand were developed through the eyes of the ground floor retailers who call the urban community home, has produced 28 sales to date.

Florida Home Builders Association Excel Awards – Best Overall Marketing Campaign

45_lbhReinforcing A Personal Approach

As part of a rebranding effort, a print campaign for The Founders Club, was created to evolve the golf club community’s message, and look and feel, to more effectively convey the community’s brand distinction. The campaign profiled a series of residents and how both the community and their custom built luxury home fit their distinctive taste and lifestyle which received e significant boost in word-of-mouth advertising, the primary driver of highly qualified leads.

Florida Home Builders Association Excel Awards – Best Magazine Ad

45_rad2Evolving A C-Store Experience

The Radiant Group retained Walker to develop a new brand for their convenience stores. The design represents Radiant’s community roots in the Tampa Bay area. Environmental graphics express the history of Radiant, each store’s neighborhood and community philanthropy. The new look provides an escape from yesterday’s convenience store experience, and has helped exceed revenue goals.

Convenience Store News Award – Best Interior Design

45_uriahs2Vertical Farming Grows a Brand

Uriah’s Urban Farm engaged Walker to evolve the brand to better reflect the company’s revolutionary method of growing food and its distribution directly to restaurants for display and use. The brand positioning and identity was updated to reflect the brand distinction, followed by packaging, point-of-sale and a vibrant website to further grow the brand.

Graphic Design USA: American Graphic Design Award
– Branding and Identity Program

45_awardsUNTIL NEXT TIME, CHEW ON THIS:

The marketplace is constantly changing including the affects of an evolving competitive landscape, economic conditions, and communication advances in the way consumers want to receive information. If your results need a lift, a brand audit can reveal the best way to strengthen your marketing program.

Call us at 813.875.3322 for a quicker path to sales success and some industry recognition too.

Top Homebuilder Lennar Builds Brand Love

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Design, Education, Employees, Hospitality, Identity, Interaction, Promotion

Building Brand Love

“Receiving great customer service triggers the same cerebral reactions as feeling loved.” – Trendwatching.com

When Lennar Homes wanted to elevate its customer service to a whole new level in its Tampa and Central Florida regions, Walker developed a distinctive brand program that would help build loyalty and love for the Lennar brand. Designed to help Lennar stand apart from competitor brands, the program encompassed the way Lennar Knowology_Image2engaged with its customers before, during and long after the sale.

Walker named the program, Neighborhood Knowology. Knowology conveys the realm of knowledge with a fresh, fun twist. Each community has a dedicated “Knowologist” – a concierge-type team member that serves as the on-site, Lennar customer service representative. Knowlogists help homeowners know how to care for their new Lennar homes as well as get to know each other and what’s going on in their community and surrounding neighborhood.

To support the program, Walker developed the identity, collateral, Welcome Home Center graphics, vehicle identification, a program orientation tool and idea starters to prepare Knowologists for the program launch.

KnowologyEventPhotoDid it work?

Here’s what we know: Before the Knowology program launch, Lennar’s Central Florida Division was ranked 24 out of 30 divisions nationally for customer care. Since the program launch, they’ve ranked #1 and #2 nationally. Also, the customer care scores for Orlando increased from the 70’s to the 90’s in just 2 months after the program launch. Being in the know definitely has its benefits!

Until Next Time, Chew On This:

Every business has an opportunity to increase its competitive advantage by branding a service offering to extend its value. Where’s the white space you should be claiming? Call us at 813.875.3322 for a Brand Audit to uncover the potential.

Your Brand’s Most Important Customer

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Design, Employees, Hospitality, Identity

Build Your Brand From The Inside Out

When launching a brand, do you know who your most important customers are? Many companies look externally to those who buy their products or services. But success is often determined by a company’s internal customers: their employees. 

Without employee understanding and buy-in, any brand strategy is in jeopardy. It needs to both resonate with them and be a reflection of company values and culture. Otherwise, the strategy is at risk of not being embraced or being perceived as inauthentic.

That’s why strong brands are built from the inside out.

A great example is our client Preferred Materials, one of the Southeast’s leading concrete and asphalt suppliers.

Walker partnered with Preferred to create a strategy to differentiate it as a premium supplier in a highly competitive and commoditized industry. Our efforts uncovered the sweet spot of their distinction: a pervasive “whatever it takes” attitude towards meeting customer needs that’s unique within the industry and valued by customers.

Walker designed Preferred’s strategy to communicate their distinction using the success stories of its employees. Doing this required two things – employee buy-in and a steady stream of content to share internally and externally. Preferred needed a way to make storytelling inclusive of their employees, a routine part of their operations, and something that is celebrated within the company’s culture.

So we created an employee recognition program to systematically collect nominations, recognize employees and share their stories of excellent service. We then officially launched the brand starting with a series of high-energy internal events hosted by senior leadership.

Employee response was fantastic – they were excited about the new brand and appreciative of the recognition. Most importantly, they understand what their brand stands for and are proud to deliver it every day.

And that makes a rock solid foundation for building a brand.

UNTIL NEXT TIME

Branding isn’t about a sticker or a tagline. Your brand is your company’s most important business asset and it affects all parts of your organization and all audiences, internal and external. So before you get going with a new branding campaign, make sure you build it from the inside out. Call us at 813.875.3322 to get everyone in your organization believing in your brand promise.

Segway into 2016

Posted by Walker Brands in Holiday, Interaction, Places, Urban

Walker Brands celebrated the holidays enjoying many of the wonderful nighttime experiences in Grand Central at Kennedy, The Channel District and Tampa’s Downtown. Thank you to Pour House Tampa, Cena, The TECO Line Streetcar System and Magic Carpet Glide Segway Tours of Tampa who made our Segway into 2016 special! Happy Holidays to all!

Thomas Plummer Joins Walker Brands as VP of Brand Strategy

Posted by Walker Brands in Employees, Employment

Fall 2015 brings cooler temperatures, the start of the holiday season, and new leadership at Walker.

Tom is a marketing leader, brTomand strategist and CRM expert with over 20 years of experience designing and executing branding and customer insight programs for brands such as Royal Caribbean, Celebrity Cruises, Outrigger Hotels, and HSN.

Most recently, Tom ran his own consultancy practice, Thomas Plummer Insights, where he served a diverse clientele of hospitality and real estate clients in the Miami area and launched a proprietary in-the-moment guest feedback and management system for the hospitality industry.

Tom comes to Walker with a strong and diverse blend of corporate and agency experience in the travel, hospitality, real estate, retail and destination marketing segments. His passion is building strong brands through the utilization of solid research and deep analytics that result in key insights that inform a brand’s identity, personality, and story.

Originally from Washington, D.C., Tom has also lived in Miami before calling St. Petersburg home. He holds a BA in Economics from Wake Forest and an MBA in Marketing from Virginia Tech. He’s a graduate of Leadership Miami, Leadership St. Pete and sits on the St. Pete Chamber of Commerce Marketing Committee.

Places That Connect With Us

CostaRica

Tom’s Favorite Place: Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica

“Set high on the cliffs above Manuel Antonio National Park, the town of Manuel Antonio has world-class views and arguably the best sunset watching in the world. Surrounded by jungle, home to howler monkeys and a variety of other fascinating creatures, Manuel Antonio also offers great beaches, tons of outdoor adventures, and personifies Costa Rica’s ‘Pura Vida’ lifestyle.” – Thomas Plummer; tplummer@walkerbrands.com

Announcing Our Latest Branding Clients

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Design, Environmental Graphics, Identity, Luxury, Places, Positioning, Real Estate, Rebrand, Urban

As the real estate market recovers, we are seeing more clients seeking to connect their developments and destinations with audiences in more meaningful, memorable, and distinctive ways. We are privileged to work with these reputable firms to strategically build integrated brand programs for their developments.

Naples-based luxury custom home builder, London Bay Homes, has engaged Walker to reinvigorate the brand and increase sales traffic for its golf and country club community in Sarasota, The Founders Club. Walker is evolving the brand story and developing a comprehensive branding plan for the 2015/2016 selling season. The Founders Club, which was named Best Overall Community in the 2015 Manatee/Sarasota Parade of Homes.

GCAK Tampa, LLC, the developers of Grand Central at Kennedy, have engaged Walker to develop an integrated advertising and marketing plan for sales of remaining units of this 390-unit mixed-use urban neighborhood community in Tampa’s popular Channel District.

 

Bayshore Retirement Partners, developers of senior living and memory care communities including Horizon Bay Hyde Park, have engaged Walker to evolve its brand strategy to position the company for continued growth. Bayshore’s principal, the former CEO of Horizon Bay Retirement Living, is a repeat client – Walker developed the nationally recognized, award-winning brand for Horizon Bay.

The Breeden Company has once again engaged Walker as its strategic destination branding partner, this time for its Harbor Vista at Crawford Street. Walker is developing the brand strategy and initial marketing for this 134-unit multifamily community in
Virginia. Previously, Walker developed the company’s award-winning brand for its Red Knot at Edinburgh apartment community.

UNTIL NEXT TIME

Walker’s breadth of real estate branding programs spans beyond marketing and advertising and includes signage, programming, sales center experience and more. Check out some of our recent work here.

Walker Brands Launches 3 New Brand Programs

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Design, Food & Beverage, Identity, Luxury, Places, Positioning, Promotion, Real Estate, Rebrand, Uncategorized

Uriah's Urban FarmsFARM TO TABLE, LITERALLY!
We hear a lot of “farm to table” these days but no one’s taken it as far as Farmer Dave Smile’s has at Uriah’s Urban Farms. A visit to his indoor farm yields a story almost too good to be true…. until he pulls off a Rainbow Chard Leaf and you taste it. Tasting is believing and the brand evolution by Walker helps restaurant customers get it, too. We created an evolved identity, point-of-sale, new website and other touchpoints for restaurant owners, Farmer Dave and hungry patrons and helped further GROW the brand.

Eshenbaugh Land Company THE “COWBOY CODE” DRIVES BUSINESS
You don’t have to spend much time with Eshenbaugh Land Company before you realize the magnetism of brilliant brokers layered with cowboy code ethics, lunch-and-learn campfires, and an unbridled instinct of all things land. Walker used this company’s distinctive personality to inspire branded imagery, story and communications materials for this authentic land brokerage firm.

Rattlesnake Marine CenterA SNAKE-BITTEN BRAND
When the unique name of your location actually symbolizes the spirit of your brand, what do you do? You claim it! That’s what the new owners of Rattlesnake Marine Center, a luxury yacht marine service facility located on the historic Rattlesnake Point in Tampa, did when they wanted to get the attention of a discerning clientele. It was a compelling and memorable springboard to launch an identity, signage, advertising, and a promise to their customers who are used to best-of-breed craftsmanship and service. And it’s getting more than attention.

UNTIL NEXT TIME

At Walker, we are passionate about helping clients bring their brands to life across all touchpoints, including their physical and online environments. If you’re ready to launch or evolve your brand to the next level, or simply want your marketing to work harder – we’re ready to listen. Call us at 813.875.3322 to take your brand to the next level of success.

Human Era Brands: Know How to be Real

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Employees, Hospitality, Identity, Interaction, Positioning, Product, Rebrand, Social

  “Transparency, honesty, kindness, good stewardship, even humor, work in businesses at all times.”
― John Gerzema

Human Era businesses know it’s okay to make mistakes; even more so, they know it’s okay to admit them. Instead of glossing over mistakes and attempting to sweep inconsistencies under the rug, they own their blunders. They apologize and explain the issues at hand.

Netflix demonstrated this in their attempt to rebrand their mailer DVD service to Qwikster. Cofounder and CEO Reed Hastings explained and apologized for the lack of communication in a video to the public. Further, Qwikster was axed when they realized their customers didn’t want this feature, reinforcing “we heard you” as a responsive move by Netflix.

On a smaller scale, USAA shows customer ratings on their website regardless if they are positive or not. On those less than stellar reviews, a moderator responds and has the appropriate personnel reach out to try and resolve the issue at hand.USAA

The ability to admit real life mistakes shows consumers a transparency that companies did not exemplify in years past and establishes a layer of trust between the consumer and the brand. With family and friends, truth and integrity are key to relationship growth, and this is no different with the brands we choose to enrich our lives.

UNTIL NEXT TIME

What is one step you can take to begin to be more transparent with your consumers?

Human Era Brands: Act Like People

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Design, Employees, Food & Beverage, Hospitality, Identity, Interaction, Places, Positioning, Product, Promotion, Rebrand, Social, Technology, Uncategorized

No one likes calling a company and getting an automated recording. In the same way, no one likes a brand that’s too stiff and impersonal. Gone is the age of formality; being real is in vogue.IKEA

Human Era brands have conversations with consumers. They don’t force their way. They’re cool enough to be welcomed; they’re “one of the guys.”Starbucks Twitter 2

Ikea demonstrates this on their social media by featuring fabulous before and after shots of how their furniture works in a space. Additionally, they know their weakness, assembling the furniture, and provide do-it-yourself tips on social media to their followers. Recognizing needs and addressing them appropriately is a way to get on a personal level with your consumers.

IKEA 2Another iconic brand to follow for their stellar people skills is Starbucks. Their twitter feed is chock full of personal-sounding tweets, artsy photos and even retweeting of followers. On Valentine’s Day, sweet poems under 140 characters were tweeted throughout the day. They also address a common problem facing many Starbucks customers, not knowing or using Starbucks’ terminology when ordering. They share “pro-tips” on their social media to inform customers of branded nomenclature. Starbucks Twitter 1

Ikea and Starbucks know their customers’ needs and have met them on that personal level. They are lending a hand to help as a friend would, by being human. This is one way to succeed as a Human Era brand.

Out with Institutional Era Branding; In with Human Era Branding

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Design, Employees, Food & Beverage, Hospitality, Identity, Positioning, Rebrand, Social, Sustainability, Uncategorized

FEEDThe world as we know it is changing. Consumers, specifically millenials, don’t want to be talked at by a TV or radio ad. They want to be a part of something. They would rather support a cause than a brand. They want their chosen brands to support something.

 

This is the nature of “Human Era” brands. Essentially, brands are attempting to be human. They not only listen to what you and I say, but they welcome input from us. They are also transparent about their values and flaws. Consumers no longer turn their noses up at mistakes by their favorite brands as long as they are recognized by the brand. This openness builds trust, which is key to “Human Era” brands.

Chipotle     

There are 5 trends that we will see throughout 2015 that may be uncomfortable for brands to jump into, as they stray from the norm of appearing buttoned-up and airbrushed. In the upcoming blogs we will dive into the 5 ways you can take your brand from the “Institutional Era” into the “Human Era” of branding.

UNTIL NEXT TIME

Are you pondering the best way to evolve your company’s brand? It’s a critically important move and we’d welcome a chance to share best practices in today’s ever-changing landscape. Get in touch with us here.