Bruce Smith

Anecdote founder

How can I find a trusted brand agency

The business looks tired, the customers are getting tired, and the employees are bored. Sounds like it’s time to look at rebranding the business.  But where do you start with finding the right support and expertise? Fear not dear reader this article walks you through it step by step.

Research potential agencies

Start by researching potential branding agencies.

Define your needs: Before you start researching potential brand agencies, it’s important to define your needs. What specific services do you require? Are you looking for a full-service agency that can handle everything from brand strategy to implementation, or do you just need help with one specific aspect of your branding, such as a logo or tagline? Having a clear understanding of what you need will help you narrow down your search.

Ask for referrals: Talk to other business owners or professionals in your industry and ask for referrals for brand agencies they have worked with or have heard good things about. Personal recommendations can be a great starting point for your research.

Conduct online research: Do a Google search for “brand agencies” or “branding firms” and look at the results. Check out their websites and social media profiles, read their client testimonials and case studies, and get a sense of their experience and expertise.

Request proposals: Narrow down your list to a few top choices and request proposals from each agency. This will give you an idea of their approach, process, and pricing.

Review their portfolio

Look at the agency’s portfolio to see examples of their previous work. This can give you a sense of their style and the types of clients they work with.

When reviewing a brand agency’s portfolio, here are some key things to look for:

Relevance: Look for examples of work that are relevant to your industry or brand. If you’re a B2B company, for example, look for examples of work the agency has done for other B2B clients. If you’re a fashion brand, look for examples of work the agency has done for other fashion brands. This will give you a sense of the agency’s experience and expertise in your industry.

Quality: Look for examples of work that are high-quality and visually appealing. Is the design cohesive and well-executed? Are the visuals and messaging engaging and memorable? You want to work with an agency that produces work of a high standard.

Diversity: Look for examples of work that show a diverse range of styles and approaches. A good agency should be able to adapt their style to fit the needs of different clients and brands. Look for evidence that the agency can work across a variety of mediums, such as print, digital, and social media.

Results: Look for examples of work that have produced measurable results for the client. Has the agency helped to increase brand awareness, drive traffic, or increase sales? Look for evidence of the agency’s ability to deliver tangible results for their clients.

Innovation: Look for examples of work that are innovative and creative. You want to work with an agency that can bring fresh, new ideas to the table and help you stand out in a crowded market.

Strategy: Look for examples of work that show a strategic approach. A good agency should be able to help you develop a clear brand strategy that aligns with your business goals and values. Look for evidence that the agency takes a thoughtful and strategic approach to branding.

Brand consistency: Look for examples of work that show a consistent brand image and message across different mediums and platforms. Consistency is important for building a strong brand identity and increasing brand recognition.

Schedule a consultation

To schedule a consultation with a brand agency, here are the steps you can take.

Contact the agency: You can usually find the contact information for a brand agency on their website or social media profiles. Send an email or give them a call to express your interest in their services and to request a consultation.

Explain your needs: In your initial contact with the agency, be sure to explain your branding needs and what you hope to achieve through the consultation. This will help the agency understand your business and prepare for the consultation.

Discuss logistics: Once you have expressed your interest and provided some background information, you can discuss the logistics of the consultation. This might include discussing the preferred meeting format (e.g. in-person, phone, video call), the duration of the consultation, and any documents or materials you may need to provide in advance.

Prepare for the consultation: Prior to the consultation, take the time to prepare your questions and gather any relevant materials you wish to share with the agency. This might include examples of previous branding work, competitor analysis, or other relevant materials.

Attend the consultation: On the day of the consultation, make sure you are ready to attend on time and are in a quiet space with a stable internet connection (if the consultation is virtual). Be prepared to ask questions and have an open and honest discussion about your branding needs.

Follow up: After the consultation, follow up with the agency to thank them for their time and to discuss any next steps. This might include requesting a proposal or further discussing the agency’s services.

Ask for references

If you’re considering working with a brand agency and want to ask for references from past clients, here are the steps you can take

Be upfront: When you reach out to the agency, let them know that you are interested in working with them but would like to speak to some of their past clients first. This is a reasonable request, and any reputable agency should be willing to provide references.

Explain your reason: Briefly explain why you’re requesting references. For example, you might say that you want to make sure the agency has a track record of success and positive relationships with their clients.

Request references: Ask the agency if they can provide the contact information for two or three of their past clients. You can also ask if there are any specific clients that they think would be a good fit for you to speak with.

Follow up with references: Once you have the contact information for past clients, reach out to them and ask about their experience working with the agency. Be specific with your questions, and ask about the quality of the agency’s work, their communication style, and their ability to meet deadlines and budgets.

Evaluate the references: Use the information you gather from the references to evaluate the agency’s strengths and weaknesses. Make sure the agency has a track record of success and positive relationships with their clients.

Consider the feedback: Use the feedback you receive from the references to help inform your decision about whether or not to work with the agency. If the feedback is consistently positive, that’s a good sign that the agency is a good fit for your brand. If the feedback is mixed or negative, it may be a red flag and you may need to reconsider your options.

Evaluate communication and collaboration

Good communication and collaboration are essential when working with a brand agency. Here are some signs to look for to determine if an agency is good at communication and collaboration:

Active listening: A good agency will take the time to listen to your needs and understand your business goals. They should be asking questions to get a better understanding of your brand and what you hope to achieve through the project.

Timely and clear communication: A good agency will communicate regularly and clearly, providing updates on the project and responding to any questions or concerns you may have in a timely manner. They should also be transparent about any potential issues that may arise and how they plan to address them.

Consistency in messaging: A good agency will ensure that messaging and branding are consistent across all channels, including social media, email, and other marketing materials.

Flexibility and adaptability: A good agency should be able to adapt to changing needs and priorities. They should be able to shift gears quickly if your business needs change or if a new opportunity arises.

Attention to detail: A good agency should be detail-oriented, paying close attention to every aspect of the project. This includes ensuring that all branding elements are consistent and on-brand, as well as ensuring that deadlines and budgets are met.

Collaboration and teamwork: A good agency should work collaboratively with you and your team. They should be open to feedback and willing to incorporate your ideas into the project:

Consider budget

When considering a brand agency’s fees, it’s important to keep the following in mind:

Understand what is included: Make sure you have a clear understanding of what is included in the agency’s fees. Do they charge for every hour worked, or do they offer a package deal? Are there any additional costs that may arise during the project? Understanding the scope of work and what is included in the fees will help you make an informed decision.

Consider the agency’s experience: A more experienced agency may charge higher fees, but they may also be able to deliver better results. Consider the agency’s track record and reputation in the industry before making a decision.

Look for value-added services: Some brand agencies may offer value-added services that go beyond the basic branding work. For example, they may offer consulting or strategic planning services that can help your business grow. Consider the value of these additional services when comparing prices.

Negotiate: Don’t be afraid to negotiate with the agency to try and get a better deal. They may be willing to adjust their fees or provide additional services to win your business.

Understand the payment schedule: Make sure you understand the agency’s payment schedule and when payments are due. This will help you avoid any surprises and make sure that you can meet your financial obligations.

In summary, when considering a brand agency’s fees, it’s important to shop around, understand what is included in the fees, consider the agency’s experience and reputation, look for value-added services, negotiate if possible, and understand the payment schedule. By keeping these factors in mind, you can make an informed decision about which agency is the best fit for your business.

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