When it comes to the design choices you make for your business, branding is always an important driving force. Any designer, marketer or successful website owner will tell you that without strong branding, you are fighting a far more difficult battle to stand out, to engage with your audience, to communicate what kind of business you are, and to stick in people’s memories.
Branding and Audience
However, when we think about branding, whether it is the colour scheme and fonts we use on our websites and printed materials or the uniforms staff wear, the layout of our premises or the tone we write with on our blogs, it is always about making sure the pubic, or our target customer base, is receiving a message they can relate to.
In actual fact, branding is so powerful that it can have advantages when used with people we do not actually have to ‘win over’, like our own staff, or even suppliers to whom we are the customer. Here are some important things to consider about branding non-public or client facing business elements:
Communicating Your Brand Identity Is Important in Dealing with Suppliers
Suppliers are vital to your business, and in many cases, are the only thing that makes it possible for you to give your own clients the products or services you deliver. Whether your suppliers work with you on the business side, for example providing you want the components you need to build your end product, or providing you with the end product itself, your relationship with them will work better – to everybody’s benefit – if they have an understanding of the ‘personality’ of your business, alongside the business best practices in terms of Purchase Order control and KPI visibility. Even without a long relationship, good branding on things like your SAP supplier portal (and if you don’t currently have a strong portal, you should look into SAP centric Weaveability supplier portals) can give them a sense of what your style is, who you appeal to, and what they can expect.
Your Brand Should Feed Your Company Culture
Just as you may not expect your non-customer facing staff to dress in uniforms or smart business dress, you may not expect your internal websites and systems to be branded as coherently as your external ones. This can actually present a missed opportunity to reinforce the brand with the people who are representing it the most. Branding your intranet and even simple internal web pages, for example forms you have staff fill in for various HR reasons, can give a feeling of consistency. If your public image is that of a young, fun, innovative company, your intranet needs to be like this too, or there is a disconnect that prevents it from properly fostering the company culture you need to live up to your public facing brand.
Whether it is your internal SharePoint environment, or the emails you send to your external accountant, consider how to reflect your brand in all of your dealings as a company, even when they are not directed at potential or current customers. It can really help you communicate things about your business.