With thousands of ad firms wanting your business, how can you choose? Experts explain how to set your goals, put it in an RFP, and snag the best creative team.

Long gone are the days of a handful of Madison Avenue firms controlling the advertising world. Shopping for an advertising agency is no longer done in smoke-consumed boardrooms and martini bars. With the advances of technology and the introduction of digital methods, the advertising world has changed drastically since the 1960s. Thousands of wildly different agencies exist—from 10-men experimental shops in Brooklyn to enormous traditional firms with a global reach, and everything in between. Terms like “experiential marketing” or “social media” that were relatively unknown a decade ago—much less five decades ago—are now crucial considerations. Of course, ideas are still the foundation of creative work, but other key factors play a role in forming a valuable relationship between a company and its advertising agency.

Lombardo Agency Rebrands Luxury Furniture Company, Castelle

During the upcoming Casual Preview Market, Castelle will launch its corporate-wide rebranding to include all marketing literature, advertising and showroom signage. The rebranding efforts will coincide with the introduction of an unprecedented number of new collections to the Castelle handcrafted luxury furnishings brand.

During the Casual Preview Market in Chicago, July 12 – 14, the Castelle showroom will unveil the new logotype in signage as well as within marketing literature. New advertising creative incorporating the Castelle logotype, brand statement and product photography also will debut in July 2016 trade publications.

Looking to rebrand your business?

Some may consider rebranding as a complete change of what the brand stands for and looks like. This is not true – a good rebrand is not a U-turn or change of faith! It is the realisation that their brand has grown and changed far beyond its original goals and values. A good rebrand allows a refocus on core values and strengthening of those aspects that truly reflect your product or service – reconnecting it to its users or consumers, current or potential new ones.

When undertaking a rebranding project it is essential to consider the following:

What – are you trying to achieve?
Why – do you need to rebrand?
Who – do you want to target and what will they be looking for?
How – do you want to achieve this? – How are your closest competitors achieving their market share?

Lombardo & Partners is known for being one the most recognized rebranding advertising and marketing agency agencies.

There are many reasons for rebranding.

How much could your company benefit from a timely rebranding exercise? The business rebrand is about a great deal more than making your business look good. It’s about making your bottom line look good, too.

The important factors to consider when assessing the value of a rebrand include equity measurement; market differentiation and accessibility; brand awareness, relevance and vitality; and consumer personality, preference, usage, associations, and emotional connectivity. If your company can improve its relationship to its customer base in any or all of these key areas, you may want to think seriously about rebranding.

1. Gain competitive advantage

Your brand is the public face of your business. A well-executed rebrand can allow your company to reflect current market dynamics and gain competitive advantage, accelerate pipeline performance and become a leading voice in your industry. Sidestep the competition and increase your market share through an updated image. By revisiting your brand messaging, you can counter a loss in consumer confidence and/or decreased profitability.

The Power of Packaging at the Doorstep

Brands need to explore new packaging strategies in the era of online delivery to keep consumers coming back for more.

Packaging offers a way to establish brand identity and create personalized consumer experiences. But in the era of online delivery, shouldn’t brands do a lot more to give online shoppers more compelling and on brand packaging experiences—right on the consumer’s doorstep? In today’s economic environment, after all, brands are competing as much on the experiences they offer as the products they sell.

We all saw the numbers for the 2014 holiday season: more online purchases than ever. By 2018, nearly one-half of CPG growth—a total take of $35 billion in sales

The Value of Brand Consistency

Building and properly managing brand equity has become a priority for companies of all sizes, in all types of industries, in all types of markets. After all, from strong brand equity flow customer loyalty and profits. The rewards of having a strong brand are clear.

The problem is, few managers are able to step back and assess their brand’s particular strengths and weaknesses objectively. Most have a good sense of one or two areas in which their brand may excel or may need help. But if pressed, many would find it difficult even to identify all of the factors they should be considering. When you’re immersed in the day-to-day management of a brand, it’s not easy to keep in perspective all the parts that affect the whole.

Making a Marketing Connection

What if marketing weren’t marketing anymore? More than that, what if we abandoned some of the fundamentals of the business as well, like the old advertising standard “It’s not creative unless it sells”?  What if the goal was not sales but engagement? What if we said goodbye to Push marketing and emphasized Pull marketing instead? How different would our world be?

A different way of thinking.

We contend it would be radically different and likely a good deal more successful. Today’s affluent consumer is highly sensitive to pitches and disregards most of them. “Please buy my fine product” is just not very compelling, and you’d be surprised at how many tired guises that message is delivered under.

What’s needed now.

Today the Holy Grail is engagement, a conversation, an awakening, an appreciation. The sale will come after that, naturally and easily. The aim, of course, is not just to create buyers but advocates, customers who will go on to tell others about their experience. Given that so much of life is lived online, and given that reviewing anything and everything is part and parcel of life online, the role of advocate is an important one since they will influence the next round of buyers. The education of a brand advocate begins with engagement.

Focusing on what matters.

Many of us might even consider changing our title from Chief Marketing Officer to Chief Engagement Officer, just to remind everyone in the organization what the real job is today. It will force you, and others, to rethink whether another “20% Off” deal is really the right message today. Isn’t there something deeper you can deliver, some smarter way of communicating what your brand is really all about?

Branding Glossary Toolbox

Abstract Name: A name that is entirely invented and has no meaning of its own.

Associative Name: A name that alludes to an aspect or benefit of the product or the company.

Brand: A brand is a mixture of attributes, tangible and intangible, symbolized in a trademark, which, if managed properly, creates value and influence.

Branding: Selecting and blending tangible and intangible attributes to differentiate the product, service or corporation in an attractive, meaningful and compelling way. The identification of a product, service or offer with the parent company.

Brand Architecture: How an organization structures and names the brands within its portfolio. There are three main types of brand architecture systems: monolithic, where the corporate name is used on all products and services offered by the company; endorsed, where all sub-brands are linked to the corporate brand by means of either a verbal or visual endorsement; and freestanding, where the corporate brand operates merely as a


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