How to Choose Between Several Top Branding Agencies for Your Business Needs
We always recommend narrowing your branding agencies down to two or three of your favorites. But where do you go from there? How do you choose between several branding agencies that you like? It’s easy – answer the following five questions, and you’ll have all the information you need to choose a top agency that meets all of your branding needs.
1. How much does the agency know about your business model?
The internet has made branding more specialized than ever. Choosing your branding agency may mean turning to an agency that specializes in your business model or an agency that you believe can quickly learn your business model. Let’s examine both:
- An agency that specializes in branding for your business model
This type of agency usually has a lot to offer. They can show you branding examples they’ve done for other businesses. If they’re a good agency, they can also show you how your branding strategy will be similar and different from the branding in the examples. They’ll be able to tell you everything about the businesses in the examples, including their market, customers, clients, and consumers.
- An agency that doesn’t specialize in branding for your business model
This type of agency still can do a great job. The truth is, it’s nearly impossible for a brand design agency to have experience with every business out there. The thing that separates a great brand design agency from a not so great brand design agency is how quickly they can learn about your business model. We recommend asking the branding agencies on your list specific questions about your business model and your market. Their answers will give you a good idea of how much they already know and how easy it will be for them to improve their knowledge. In a best-case scenario, they’ll be able to give you an example of a branding project where they were unfamiliar with a business model and had to learn it quickly. They’ll be able to tell you the step-by-step approach they used to get the job done. They’ll also be able to tell you how they can use their approach to take on your branding project.
The agency you choose will have lots of knowledge about the business of branding. They should be able to lay out a branding strategy and show you how the strategy reflects your business model and how it will help you meet all of your branding goals.
2 What is the quality of the agency’s work?
You’ll want to choose a branding strategy agency that consistently produces high-quality work. And while this may seem like common sense, it’s important to know that many businesses don’t take the time to look at an agency’s work. We recommend taking a long and hard look at each agency’s portfolio and asking any questions you may have. The branding strategy agency should be able to answer your questions and tell you how each branding element played into the overall branding strategy. Pay close attention to their attitude toward their portfolio. If they’re interested, informative, and engaged, it means they care about their clients and have a good work ethic. This will give you a great idea of how much they’ll invest in your branding project. You want an agency that cares and wants to provide you with the best results possible.
3. Where is the agency located?
Location is a commonly overlooked factor when choosing a brand strategy agency. When possible, we recommend choosing a brand strategy agency that’s close to you or in a city where the market is similar to yours. For example, if your business is headquartered in Los Angeles, you probably shouldn’t hire a brand strategy agency that’s based in Dallas. You’ll want a branding agency that knows your area and its customers and clients. When an agency knows how customers and clients in an area react to different brand strategies, a calculated branding strategy can be implemented and easily adjusted when needed. The agency will be able to use past experiences to produce the results you want, and they’ll be able to lean on their knowledge when making tough decisions.
4. Does the agency’s price fit in your budget?
Price should always factor into your decision-making process. It’s important to know how much money you want to spend and what you want to spend your money on. Branding agencies should always be able to give you an upfront itemized price that may include the following branding services:
· Visuals (logo, typography, colors, visual support elements)
· Brand strategy (brand story, positioning, messaging)
· Website branding
· Brand materials (business cards, signs, brochures, social media)
Some businesses spend tens of thousands of dollars on branding, and others spend one or two thousand. If you know what your budget is, you can work with the branding agencies you’re interested in to come up with a branding strategy that fits your budget. If you don’t know what your budget is, you can ask the branding agencies you’re looking at to give you advice. A good agency will listen to your business plan to give you recommendations that will help you reach your goals. They’ll sell you exactly what you need and won’t try to take advantage of you. If something doesn’t fit in your budget, they’ll easily be able to give you an alternative. They should never have any hidden costs in their price.
5. Does the agency treat you right?
If you’re going to spend your hard-earned money on branding services, you want to make sure the agency treats you right. Because at the end of the day, branding agencies are no different than any other business. They should treat you with respect and always be professional. They should:
- Answer all of your questions
- Address all of your concerns
- Explain things in a clear, concise, and easy-to-understand manner
- Return your phone calls or emails in a timely manner
- Be upfront and honest about pricing
An agency that doesn’t treat you right probably doesn’t care about your business. If their branding strategy doesn’t work, they probably won’t stick around to make necessary corrections. To make extra sure you’re making the right choice, you can always ask the branding agencies to give you a list of references. You can call previous clients and ask them what their experiences were like.
Making Your Decision
Think about your answers to the five questions in this post when making your decision. Choose an agency that:
- Specializes in or can quickly learn your business model
- Consistently produces high-quality work
- Is located in an area close to your headquarters
- Provides branding services that fit in your budget
- Treats you well
Your decision should be much easier to make once you’ve taken all of these factors into account. If you need any extra help, remember that you can always ask for references and give them a call.
David Taylor Design offers a wide range of branding services. Our branding experts create branding strategies that produce results. Please call us at 973-840-1003 or reach out today to arrange a one-on-one consultation with one of our branding experts.