How to know if you need to hire an agency for your branding project
There are many initiatives that can benefit by bringing on an outside branding agency for support (we even wrote about the advantages of an agency perspective here). But how do you know if hiring an outside agency is the right fit for your internal branding project?
Here are the top signs that it’s time to work with an external team for your branding efforts:
Your internal team lacks expertise
Brand strategy, brand development, and brand messaging work demands experience your internal team may not have. After all, they were hired to be experts in your industry and their individual roles. This is particularly true if you don’t have an internal brand creative department.
If you are lucky enough to have a dedicated creative team, they still may not be equipped to tackle such a large endeavor. For example, you may have a talented in-house designer, but they’ve never handled a brand project that involves more than design. A brand initiative typically involves competitive analysis, research, messaging, voice, tone, and more in addition to design. Understandably, they would need support to tackle the project.
Leverage your employees’ strengths and outsource their weaknesses. An agency can help you fill the gaps where your internal team falls short without the need to hire more staff.
Brand projects can be daunting and fall last on the to-do list
You have the best intentions, maybe even a clear direction for your next branding effort, but you can never find the time to kick-off your project. This is often the case when internal teams are overworked, wearing multiple hats, or simply stretched too thin.
Your project won’t have the chance to move forward if you can’t or won’t dedicate the resources to it. Without the ability to prioritize branding efforts, your project perpetually sits on the backburner or falls in a stop-and-go trap.
Bringing on an agency will eliminate excuses to push off your projects. They’ll get the ball rolling and help you meet your branding deadline goals.
You’re not sure where to start
Maybe it’s not a lack of time, resources, or even talent that’s delaying your projects. What if you just aren’t sure where to get started? Or your internal team is unable to align on their vision?
If your internal team can’t answer the following questions, then you’re not ready to tackle a brand initiative without support:
- What is your strategy for rebranding?
- What is your motivation?
- What brand elements need to change? (company name, mission, vision, design aesthetic, etc.)
An agency can help provide the guidance and direction you need to get your project off the ground. They can act as unbiased mediators by listening to the varying opinions and visions of different stakeholders. Then make recommendations based on their experience and an exploration of your existing brand.
If you’re starting from square one as a startup or with a total rebrand, an agency can help capture your vision and prepare you for a successful launch.
For example, when San José Spotlight came to us with just a mission and a name, we knew we had to help them build a brand their community could trust.
We created their new brand from scratch, from their logo and tagline to their entire website and visual identity system. The new brand reflected the authentic spirit and energy of San José while still expressing trust and professionalism. In the two years since their launch, they’ve celebrated incredible growth with 7.5M new readers and over $2.3M in donations.
You’re getting pushback for pushing boundaries
Even strong and well-recognized brands feel the need to compete. Over time, any brand will need to be updated to reflect shifts in the market, keep up with trends, or adjust to changes within the company. But selling the need for a revamp is easier said than done.
Branding changes have a company-wide effect, and the transition can be expensive and labor-intensive. Unless you have a magic wand to instantly update every touchpoint, then you’ll probably run into hesitation from your team.
That’s where an agency can step in. They can help you with your brand transition strategy to apply your new look and messaging across all your touchpoints in order of priority.
An outside agency can introduce fresh ideas, push projects forward that are stuck in limbo, or be the helping hand your internal team needs to tackle intensive endeavors like rebrands.
Ready to talk branding?
Tell us about your next project here and we’ll determine how to help you reach your goals.