Aligning branding and marketing in a global enterprise: Part I
The marketing and branding landscape is constantly changing. Recently, there has been a shift from globalization to personalization, with a focus on increasing regional and local influences. This focus on personalized marketing has changed the way companies brand themselves. Brands speak more and more like real people in order to connect with their audience on a personal level. As a result, marketeers now link engagement to how well their brand is perceived by consumers. Online reputation has therefore become a crucial element in branding and marketing strategies.
The original role of marketeers is moving more towards that of a brand manager. The focus is no longer only on push marketing, trying to get a brand out there and convincing people to buy a product. It is much more about communicating the brand’s mission and values, about creating a brand image and reputation, defining who the brand is and creating loyal customers.
Marketing is the toolkit when it comes to promoting a brand. Marketing techniques such as organic and paid search, social media or more traditional methods (e.g. print, broadcast, direct mail or referral marketing) are used to communicate a brand to an audience.
Where marketing is the means, branding is the message - whether it is the image of the company, the culture it represents or its mission and values. Brand managers aim to create loyal customers after the marketing team has convinced consumers to buy the product or service.
With the constant development of branding and marketing and the emergence of new tools, brands are more present than ever before. Not only are brands selling their products in different ways, customers can also learn about products from multiple sources. When it comes to communicating a brand on different marketing channels, brand managers find it increasingly difficult to stay in full control of their brand, especially on a global scale.
Managing the content lifecycle, from the creation of content to its distribution, is time-consuming and costly. Brand managers are spending less time doing what they do best – building a sustainable brand – and more time ensuring that all teams are using the correct fonts, logos and tone of voice. The money originally invested to grow the brand is often spent on replacing off-brand marketing materials with newly created content. Moreover, localization and personalization trends make it harder to maintain brand consistency. This is because local offices often adapt marketing collateral to cultural influences, making it difficult for brand managers to control who is using what and when.
To manage the complexities of global branding and avoid losing control, companies must find a way to align all teams involved in brand communication.
Below are three of Bynder’s customers who work with a branding automation solution to streamline global marketing and branding processes and improve alignment between these departments.
DPDgroup is the international parcel delivery network of GeoPost, a wholly subsidiary of France’s LaPoste. With more than 830 depots in over 40 countries and 26,000 employees, they are one of Europe’s leading parcel delivery services.
DPDgroup used branding automation software for their global rebranding process. Bynder’s branding automation solution allowed for the global marketing team to streamline and automate all projects and campaigns in the rebranding process. Marketing teams could now create new on-brand assets that brand managers could immediately review and approve online via an integrated workflow. It also enabled the brand managers to keep an overview of all marketing processes and be in complete control of all content creation. Both brand managers and marketeers were able to ensure complete brand consistency.
AkzoNobel is a leading global paints and coatings company and a major producer of specialty chemicals. They employ over 48,000 people in 80 different countries. AkzoNobel has a wide range of well-known clients such as Sikkens, Eka, Dulux and International.
With offices and plants worldwide, AkzoNobel has a strong localized approach; each location has their specific market and their own way of product marketing. Keeping everyone on brand is therefore challenging. Working on a global scale increase complexity in communication around processes, as you’re dealing with several groups of people who speak different languages and live in different time zones. AkzoNobel uses branding automation software to simplify processes worldwide. Crucial steps such as the approval of digital assets are now streamlined, which is both time and cost efficient. All digital media is on-brand, both globally and locally. Thanks to brand guidelines, all branding and marketing teams, both internally and externally, know exactly which logos, fonts or images to use for the cultivation of their branded content. AkzoNobel’s brand portal allows global branding and marketing teams to work as one team and increases brand consistency on a global scale.
Scotch & Soda
Scotch & Soda is an up-and-coming Dutch fashion brand that is renowned for its high-quality products and its trendsetting designs. They have over 100 flagship stores worldwide, several thousands points of sale and an online web store. One of the company’s biggest problems was inconsistent brand communication – internally and externally.
With the Bynder Brand Portal, Scotch & Soda can now fully control its overall brand management and the consumption of marketing and PR materials. They are able to maintain control over all their visual assets such as images from photo shootings and promotional videos. Using Bynder’s smart interface, Scotch & Soda could integrate Bynder directly in their web shop. All images on Scotch & Soda’s website are imported from Bynder in the optimal web format and the correct size. This reduces the time spent on manual editing. Uploading a new digital asset in the Brand Portal will replace the same asset on the Scotch & Soda web shop, helping to avoid any licensing problems. Working with a branding automation solution ensured brand consistency throughout the consumption stage of the content lifecycle.
Technology And Branding
Consistent branding starts from within an organization. That’s why it is increasingly important to align all departments under a clear mission, vision, and set of values. Selling the brand within the company will transform employees into brand advocates. Brand identity guidelines also make it easier for marketing departments to create relevant and consistent branded content. Brand management approaches that are built on internal alignment are key to marketing success on a global scale.
Technology also plays a big role in aligning marketing and branding departments. Day-to-day tasks and processes are streamlined by digital tools, leaving marketeers with more resources to produce on-brand content and brand managers with more control. For global enterprises, branding automation software is an essential solution for aligning branding and marketing departments.
What is Branding Automation?
Branding automation is a category of cloud-based software intended for use by brand management specialists. Branding automation automates and streamlines day-to-day operations by making each stage in the content lifecycle - creation, cultivation and consumption - more efficient, standardized, scalable, and most of all controllable.
Branding automation is a ‘one-stop-shop’ where brand managers can control all stages of the content lifecycle, from the creation of branded content, to its cultivation and finally consumption across multiple channels such as email, website, social media, etc. By bringing all of the tools together, branding automation software reduces manual workloads and time to market pressures and helps to maintain brand consistency. Branding automation software provides brand managers with the toolkit necessary to scale up their branding and stay in control of all brand related content.
How Does Branding Automation Help to Align Branding and Marketing in a Global Enterprise?
Branding automation simplifies and automates day-to-day operations, reducing manual workloads for marketing and branding departments. By making all stages in the content lifecycle standardized, consistency is ensured across the board. Approval processes guarantee that all newly produced content is on-brand before distribution, making it easier for brand managers to manage the content produced by the marketing department.
Marketing teams can easily integrate existing systems such as their CMS and website with their branding automation solution. By seamlessly connecting to existing systems and other online tools, marketeers can upload their newly created media to existing channels from one central place. This reduces the time to market for all on-brand collateral, allowing companies to offer more personalized brand experiences.
Moreover, branding automation solutions measure all stages in the content lifecycle, giving an insight into which content works best, who created the best content and how long it took to create. Data-driven insights allow branding and marketing departments to measure the entire content lifecycle, adapt their strategy accordingly and create engaging content that drives results. Together branding and marketing departments can focus on building, growing and maintaining a sustainable brand.
Wondering how branding automation can add value to your brand? Check out our previous blog post.
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