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Chart Your Course

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Positioning

Retail shelves are often a sea of sameness – slightly different product, slightly different presentation. That’s why we loved Festina watches – waterproof watches packed in – what else – water! Way to break through and immerse the shopper in the brand experience.

Also wanting to stand out from the crowded shelves and competitive “me-too” marketplace, natural skincare products manufacturer Aubrey asked us to redefine their brand and packaging. We looked to their deep roots and impressive distinction to create a new visual vocabulary with a series of light-infused nature images and bold blocks of color unlike anything in the industry.

With minimal copy and a focus on nature, the new packaging and trade show display convey the company’s reverence for nature and celebrate their founder Aubrey Hampton with memorable quotes from this dynamic industry pioneer.

Instead of swimming along, we focus on standing out by demonstrating a brand’s difference in unique and memorable ways.

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How will you stand out from your industry’s sea of sameness? What is truly authentic to your brand that no one else can claim? We can help you reveal these distinctions and express them in a way that will make your customers want to dive right in. Contact us and let’s head for unchartered – and unclaimed – waters.

Where are your napkins?

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Identity, Social

Have you ever had a brilliant idea at 30,000 feet? That’s exactly what the smart people at American Airlines are hoping! They capitalized, literally, on that blue sky thinking by asking customers to share their innovative business ideas with a focus on making the world a better place. To submit, simply write them anywhere on the napkin (no attachments). Free flights for the winning idea!

By using a napkin – a symbol of service and a touch point already in play, they’ve further engaged a buckled-in, captive audience and tied in nicely to their recent rebrand. Plus, by inviting customers to give their ideas, they’ve reinforced that they are valued.

Today’s marketing is still about “don’t do more, do less better” and about the old adage “show them, don’t just tell them.” When you couple that with customer generated content and reward them for it, it’s a win-win.

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Where are the paper napkins in your company? Branding isn’t about spending more money and getting more stuff, it’s about making your touch points work smarter. To audit your brand and take it to new heights, give us a call.

Logos on the Move

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Identity

Technology influences how we communicate even when it comes to something held as sacred as a logo. The days of static logos and strict rules are changing. “Flexible” logos – brought to you in a big way by Google – let you demonstrate a larger expression of your brand, in a very iconic way.

Check out these progressive logos on the move:

• USA Today’s logo reflects the dynamic nature of the news set on a fixed and familiar circular stage

• We evolved Carlton Fields’ logo to express their innovation, diversity and energy. The colors change, the elements shift, but the brand’s essence remains true

MIT Media Lab’s logo has a life all its own – a perfect expression of the organization with 40,000 permutations in 12 colors

A flexible logo can give you a stage to tell your story, showcase your brand’s energy, and keep your audience engaged – in a great snack-sized bite.

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What does your logo say about your company? And, more importantly, what can it say in a fresh, expressive way? If your company is on the move, give us a call. We’ll explore how your logo can evolve to tell your dynamic story.

Chapters Health System Wins Two National Mature Media Awards!

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Healthcare, Identity, Positioning

We are delighted to congratulate our client Chapters Health System – one of the largest hospice and palliative care providers in the country – on winning two awards in the National Mature Media Awards Program:  a Silver Award for Best Marketing/Ad Campaign and a Bronze Award for the new Chapters Health Website.

Walker Brands developed an overarching brand strategy for Chapters Health System in 2011 to support the organization’s expansion into a post-acute care system, which included adding innovative new senior independence programs. The strategy included a compelling brand positioning platform and concepts, including name and identity system, to emphasize the organization’s continuum of post-acute care choices and commitment to guide and educate patients and families. Walker planned, created and implemented a comprehensive brand program, including primary collateral, Website and videos, environmental graphics, brand launch and employee training programs, and strategic public relations.

Awards aside, the important thing for us is to see this very authentic brand come alive. Through all of these touch points, we are able to tell the true story of who Chapters Health is and how they serve the community. Those are the real rewards.

The Brand Power of Sustainability– Part 7

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Sustainability

Maximize your brand’s sustainability story! We show you how in our final tip of The Brand Power of Sustainability Series.

Tip #7: Take It Off The Shelf

Is your award collecting dust on a shelf? Well, dust it off and shout it out! Make sure you include information about your awards and recognition in the boilerplate of press releases, About Us page on your website, and in brochures (printed on recycled paper, of course). Make sure your team is talking about it, too. Share what the awards mean and why sustainability is important to your organization.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to promoting your sustainability. The programs you develop should always be authentic to your brand. We can help you discover your distinction and create programs that celebrate your sustainability and set you apart from your competition.

The Brand Power of Sustainability– Part 6

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Sustainability

Tip #6 in our Brand Power of Sustainability Series demonstrates how making the decision to focus on your Triple Bottle Line – People, Planet, Profit– can have big benefits not only for the community and the environment, but also for your brand.

Tip #6: Create a Sustainable Culture.

Staff made holiday decorations from recycled materials

Find fun, on-brand ways to get your employees – and even customers – plugged in to your company’s sustainability. Develop your own way of celebrating what you care about. Start a recycling library/book swap, use recycled shredded paper for gifts and packages, donate extra supplies to local charities. Then, put your plan into action! Give your team the tools to know why they should get involved and how it connects to your brand. Be sure to create ways to reward behavior and recognize participation. You’ll build a spirit of community with your team and help them take an active role in sustainability.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to promoting your sustainability. The programs you develop should always be authentic to your brand. We can help you discover your distinction and create programs that celebrate your sustainability and set you apart from your competition.

Smart Growth. Insightful Giving.

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding

We’ve all been in that meeting. You’re asked, “How can we grow our business?” New ideas and product lines are discussed and the bottom line put under a microscope. Without a clear brand position, some pretty crazy decisions can be made.

That’s not the case with the incredible crew at TOMS – a company known for its great products, loyal following and giving spirit. When you buy a pair of TOMS shoes, they GIVE a pair to a person in need – they call it One for One™. So far they’ve given away over 1 million pairs worldwide.

Now they offer sunglasses and it works because it comes from their core – meeting basic human needs around the world. When you buy a pair of shades, TOMS will help provide sight for one person through eyeglasses or medical treatment. The new line flows seamlessly in their catalog and online with amazing stories of lives changed through meeting such fundamental needs. The new line fits because they are so much more than a “shoe company.” They are the One for One company.

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Branding gives us a chance to be more than a product or service. When you have a solid brand platform that people care about or connect with, your vision becomes clearer and the path you need to walk makes sense. We can help you focus in on your brand and create a plan to get you there.

The Brand Power of Sustainability– Part 5

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Social, Sustainability

Tip #5  of our Brand Power of Sustainability Series encourages you to celebrate and share your sustainability story with everyone through social media.

Tip #5: Get Social.

Tour of LEED features posted to YouTube

Tell your green story through your website and social media. When it comes to SEO and social media, content is king. Use your sustainability rituals, details and programs you’ve created (and quantified) to tell an interesting and on-brand story about your company. You’re doing it … celebrate it! Get employees to write blog posts about your programs, add milestones to your Facebook Timeline. Within your social media plan, make sure sustainability is part of the plan and not an accidental contribution. Create a “sustainable” series that happens regularly.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to promoting your sustainability. The programs you develop should always be authentic to your brand. We can help you discover your distinction and create programs that celebrate your sustainability and set you apart from your competition.

The Brand Power of Sustainability– Part 4

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Sustainability

Having a positive impact on the environment is easy. Tip #4 in our Brand Power of Sustainability Series shows you how simple it is to introduce sustainable practices into your business.

Tip #4: Quantify It.

Bathroom features two-flush option and low-flow showers

Saying “I’m green” is one thing, but putting it into numbers makes an even bigger impact. In our new building, for instance, our utilities are 38% less per square foot than our last building, so we’re consuming less energy and water. EnergyStar.gov has some great calculators that show the environmental benefits – like reduced CO2 emissions from power plants – of your reduced energy usage. Or, it can be as simple as switching from bottled water to filtered water with glasses – 100 employees x 2 bottles a day x 260 days a year = 52,000 plastic bottles your company is NOT consuming!

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to promoting your sustainability. The programs you develop should always be authentic to your brand. We can help you discover your distinction and create programs that celebrate your sustainability and set you apart from your competition.

The Brand Power of Sustainability- Part 3

Posted by Walker Brands in Branding, Sustainability

Making sustainability part of your business can get you noticed and have big benefits not only for the community but the environment as well. Check out Tip #3 on how you can maximize your brand’s sustainability.

Tip #3: Get Creative. Stay Authentic.

Crowne Plaza’s stationary bicycles are hooked up to generators, which provide electricity for the hotel.

Doing things in a new, creative way can really get you noticed. The super-green Crowne Plaza Copenhagen Towers in Denmark lets guests generate electricity on electricity producing stationary bikes. If a guest produces 10 watt-hours of electricity, they get a complimentary meal. What a fun way to let customers participate in sustainability and become part of your brand – and create buzz! Whatever you do, make it connect to your company’s mission.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to promoting your sustainability. The programs you develop should always be authentic to your brand. We can help you discover your distinction and create programs that celebrate your sustainability and set you apart from your competition.