Being 'on brand': Consistency and personality rule at Bynder's 'OnBrand 16' conference in Amsterdam

On Brand 16

Global marketing solutions and asset management provider Bynder hosted the sold out OnBrand 16 conference on 13 October at Beurs van Berlage in Amsterdam, providing invaluable insights from speakers from Twitter, Skyscanner, 72andSunny, LinkedIn, Uber and more. A total of 550 delegates attended from across Europe to absorb crucial branding insights from top brands who are doing it well.

Here are some of The Drum’s key takeaways:

Brands must be socially consistent instead of focusing on spikes

Ashley Vinson, head of brand strategy at Twitter, kicked off the conference discussing the key steps for brands to stay ‘on brand’ via social. Vinson implored that brands must be doing their utmost to make the most out of data, however in the right way.

When analysing certain spikes in customer engagement on social, they should be looking at a consistent approach, as opposed to replicating activity that enabled the heightened engagement. Not all likes are equal, so consistency is key.

Brands must “use data to get the truth, to look for the real impact versus the numbers”. Vinson finished her keynote with a quote from Bill Bernbach of DDB Worldwide: “I warn you against believing that advertising is a science.” Insightful words to kick off the theme of the conference.

Moving culture, moving brands, moving business

Simon Summerscales, director of communication strategy at creative agency 72andSunny, spoke about the necessity for brands to make an impact on culture. “We (as advertisers) are storytelling beasts. Talent and creative thinking is an obvious ingredient to the advertising mix, however turning up the volume is key.”

Our evolving landscape leads us to challenge audiences, by asking them to think outside of the box and embrace the qualities that aren’t always targeted by advertisers as the norm. For example, Axe deodorant asked its target audience to ‘find your magic’, focusing on 'the nose' as opposed to the traditionally attractive six-pack.

As well as this, Summerscales impressed the need to work with the influencers, “to reach out, be relevant and authoritative among consumers.”

Culture eats strategy for breakfast

Marcel Molenaar, country manager and head of marketing solutions at LinkedIn Benelux, claimed the key to branding success was personalisation. The only way to be successful in this world is to be personable to your audiences. To attract true talent and business to your brand, the culture must be distinct and resonate across all platforms.

From research conducted by LinkedIn, 66% of potential candidates want to know most about the culture of your brand. The pillars of culture lie in transformation, integrity, collaboration, humour and results at LinkedIn. Its ethos is to “create an economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce". That message can be found across all platforms and that is what brands must strive to replicate.

Molenaar encouraged the audience to empower their employees to become “social professionals.": those who can become ambassadors for the brand in a human era, to speak and act like humans. Molenaar left the audience with food for thought, to “count the impressed, not the impressions.”

Striving to keep the tone of voice

The Drum spoke to Chris Hall, chief executive of Bynder about the driving force behind OnBrand 16 and the company's marketing software services. Hall explained: “Even the best brands have tiny little mistakes across the board. Different fonts, colours, grammatical errors can be overlooked.

"The manual work that goes into creating assets – sharing them and deploying them over websites, print, all kinds of media and social – we are automating those. We take all that work; annotations, emails, and creating marketing collateral for brands to use across different medias.”

“Copy must be human speech, not just marketing jargon. Tone of voice is essential to make your brand more personal. It’s extremely difficult to get right, and we are working on developing further AI that can determine and create this correct tone for brands.”

OnBrand 16 began as a roundtable and over the last two years and has evolved into a sold out conference, attracting brands and creatives from all over Europe. Hall continued: "Everyone is talking about marketing tech, but in fact, what we really need is branding tech. That is the void we are trying to fill."

Bynder is a branding automation and marketing solutions company, with headquarters in Amsterdam, offices in Rotterdam, London, Barcelona, Boston and Dubai. Bynder has recently launched its grader tool, which allows brands to grade their brand consistency across their online platforms. The company works with brand such as Puma, Spotify, and KLM.

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