In love with brands & experiences.

It is extremely important to work with things that get you excited. Excited in the way that makes you grin like a five-year-old. Working with brands and people puts that smile on my face.

What is a brand?

With a gazillion definitions for one simple word, my favourite is the one by Marty Neumeier from his brand new book the Brand Gap.

A brand is a person’s gut feeling of a product, service or company.

Marty Neumeier

A brand is a gut feeling because, unlike we might think, people are not rational – people are emotional and how brands are experienced is largely intuitive. A company can’t decide or define its brand without people and their experiences. Marty’s book is on my reading list but already based on the preview on Amazon, it seems excellent.

Working with brands

I see brand management as discovering the best ways of supporting and listening to that gut feeling people have of you. You need to tune in on what people are saying, feeling and thinking about your company, service and team BUT also what your team members say, feel and think about you, the company and your services internally. The culture of your workplace depicts your brand.

A brand is not only experienced externally but stems from the inside.

Working closely together with all of our stakeholders – clients, cooperation partners, startups, friends, family, colleagues and ex-colleagues – gives me the best view on our brand. Based on constant monitoring, listening and discussions I can analyse and react to changes and know what’s happening.

It’s like looking in a mirror and it’s addictive.

The pains of brand management

Working with brands isn’t always easy. One of the greatest challenges in working so closely with brands and people is to find out that the gut feeling, the emotional, intuitive reactions and experiences people have are sometimes not what you thought they would be. The mirror is ruthlessly honest, always.

You will hear negative things, you will find out that the things you did were not experienced the same way by everybody. You will learn from your mistakes very quickly.

What you do after these negative reflections is what matters. Just remember, your goal should never be to please everybody just for the sake of pleasing. You need to learn how to recognise the issues you should improve from the ones you can’t or even shouldn’t try to change.

How I have done this is to always think about the value and importance of the factors you get feedback on. Say I discover someone was unhappy with our way of communicating, or felt our team was not open for a discussion at an event – it’s time for an immediate check up on our end! This is because well functioning, effective communication and being easy to approach are extremely valuable characteristics for us.

Then again, if I would hear someone saying they didn’t enjoy working with us because of our international team and humorous office culture, I wouldn’t jump to change anything. Being international and having fun while working are our core values.

Your brand is what you actually are and you can’t be everything.

The greatest joy

Working on the interface between team members, clients, partners and the public has a significant perk. You’re the first one to know when the brand experience people get is something phenomenal – something better you ever dared to even dream of.

This is what drives me.

Knowing that we as individuals, as a team, as a company, as service providers did something that made people feel incredibly good. These are the moments that make me grin like an excited kid.

…once again – GREAT WORK! We are really thrilled about this. You guys rock! 🙂

A comment from a client

Speechless great atmosphere to work and get things done.

A comment from a colleague

When life/projects/clients give you lemons, you take a tequila shot.

A text on a tequila bottle we received from a client after the launch of their project.

Remember this

Your brand is the gut feeling people have of you. So, have your eyes and ears set up to see and listen how people experience your brand and base your actions on that knowledge.

This blog post is a part of the series of posts our team wrote together during a BLOGATHON in August 2015. Through 10 posts you will meet 10 storytellers ranging from China to Italy and from Finland to New Zealand who make the office our second home.