Book of the mark. Does my company need it?

Service Business

Many companies, especially newly established ones, are tempted at the beginning of their journey to invest in the image, the flagship element of which is the brand book. Who is tempting? Advertising and marketing agencies, advisory and consulting companies. Is it worth being tempted?

Visual identification, sometimes known as a brand book, Corporate Identity, Book of Brand is a set of developed rules that tell how the customer should perceive and remember us. In such a statement, we have at least:

  • different forms of the trademark, depending on whether it is displayed, printed, covered with foil, embossed, etc.,

  • colors of the trademark for various uses (e.g. internet, printing),

  • combining our logo or logotype (simply speaking, the text itself) with a slogan (i.e. a slogan with which our company and business are to be associated by the client),

  • basic business card template, letterhead, envelope.

The rest should depend on who our target customers are and how we get to them with the offer.

What does it mean? For example, a shipping company should consider well-marked cars. In marketing, reaching the customer is the most expensive. Well thought-out labeling of the transport company's cars has an impact on the emergence of inquiries from customers, especially small and medium-sized ones. A sloppy logo, dirt, peeling foil, a lack of a clear message and a lack of thought over the advantages of your own offer are worse than no labeling. If we compare the monthly rental of an advertising billboard (from 400 to 1000 PLN per month plus creation costs) with the cost of marking your own truck (each is the equivalent of at least 2 billboards passing non-stop in busy places), it will be clear why large enterprises approach the signage so carefully and advertising on vehicles. For this reason, each of Biedronka's own transport is marked with a logo, slogan and appetizing photos of leitmotifs. For a transport company, marking vehicles is not only building credibility and a good image, but also a free advertising channel, apart from the one-time cost of design and wrapping. This is just one of the potential elements of the visual identification system.

A brand book for everyone?

Most medium-sized and every large company have and use a brand book. Does it mean that your business needs a brand book? Answer the following questions:

  • Who is my client? (maybe there are many groups of your clients, try to visualize them as accurately as possible)

  • What are my company's short-term and long-term goals?

  • Does achieving them require online activity, personal contact, or any other form of relationship?

  • Do I want to act nationwide or locally?

  • What funds will I allocate to marketing and advertising activities on a regular basis?

Do I really need these answers?

Any money can be spent on marketing and advertising. If your customers mostly use the internet, you don't need a giant ledger. Of course, the binder with identification materials looks very ambitious. However, it is worth remembering that a well-made brand book is simply expensive, because it requires many thoughts and attempts. This is a cost at the level of a new car.

If the agency that wants to design the materials does not ask who your client is, how you want to reach them (internet, printed materials, shows, fairs, personal contact, printed mailing, etc.), change the agency or solve the basic dilemmas yourself with the help of our hints. If the same company proposes to create a comprehensive corporate identity of your company for PLN 2,000 net, get rid of it, because it does not know what it is offering. Allocate this amount to the logo design itself, preferably through a competition of several companies. Invite entities for which you have reliable information that they have prepared it for many medium-sized and larger companies. Present your assumptions in the form of a brief, explaining in the following points how you will use identification (internet, printing, means of transport, etc.) and what you expect to achieve thanks to it.

What will the brand book help me with?

The book of signs makes sense if it helps us:

  • organize the existing communication inside and outside the company (many companies present inconsistent materials that harm rather than support sales),

  • curtail the "free American" of people responsible for the message (stable repetition of messages always has an effect, chaos interferes),

  • save money by reducing employee time commitment,

  • shorten the work of many subcontractors who run any advertising on our behalf, thanks to which the costs of servicing our company will be reduced,

  • cut short discussions about the tastes and colors of the logo on various media.

The more complex the structure of the company and the greater the number of actions taken, the more the brand book will save your money - because the basic elements will be duplicated instead of being re-invented each time, which generates costs. If your logo is to be properly selected, it must be properly made in terms of design. The internet requires a different approach, advertising on the facade, bus or business card. Make sure that the selected contractor asks about important features - e.g. whether the sign will be used in press advertisements, on the radio, in various forms of printing.

What the sign book won't do?

The brand book will certainly not automatically increase sales. It may be easier to acquire customers within a year of its implementation, but the number of contacts and remembered associations with your business will be key. Think of it as a well-thought-out business card and a neat appearance in a meeting with a client. Do they generate sales? Rather, they enable.

Company name and trademark - legal troubles

One of the recurring problems is that the great name and logo matched to it are ... someone else's. The cheapest agency designs do not come from the actual design work, but from browsing through a bank of ready-made characters. This raises legal complications. Another common risk is designing a logo into a name that is reserved by… your competitors. Therefore, the trademark book must be prepared on the basis of the website of the Patent Office and check whether the name or trademark is no longer reserved. For this purpose, visit the website of the Patent Office of the Republic of Poland.

Be aware that the published data is incomplete. There are no unregistered but already applied for trademarks among them.

Disregarding the verification of the Patent Office website has various consequences - at best, the need to start the whole project anew, and at worst - the risk of a trial in court and the payment of high damages.