Reader's Round-Up: the future of brands

The marketing sector can be a complicated place as new marketing tools and techniques are launched, almost on a weekly basis. Powered by The Drum Network, this regular column invites The Drum Network's members to demystify the marketing trade and offer expert insight and opinion on what is happening in the marketing industry today that can help your business tomorrow.

The Drum, marketing has the power to change the world

The Drum Network's Reader's Round-Up, gives Drum Network members the opportunity to have their say on the hot topics featured in The Drum's fortnightly magazine.

Last week's new look magazine highlighted a wide range of issues in its 'Trending' section, and Nathan Fulwood of Tayburn reacts to Inside the Innovation Labs, while We Are AD's Stirland Martin reacts to the article by Ameila Priddis exploring brands and sexual identity.

'What comes after the internet?'

Nathan Fulwood, innovation director, Tayburn

Over the last 12 years I have experienced a huge shift firstly in the way of development and delivery of digital marketing. From Prince2-type, waterfall approaches to lean and agile development and marketing. We have moved away from 200 page specs and 18 month marketing plans to quicker, more iterative, way of working.

Arriving in a thriving digital agency, it is evident that the processes and frameworks of branding, which has been developed over several years, still holds many parallels to waterfall-type development, and could benefit from an application of some of the newer ways of working. It is important to re-evaluate the way we approach designing brands, given the evolving nature of what brands actually are.

Pre-internet, it was feasible to attempt to define, police and control your brand. To limit the usage of your visual identity, and restrict the members of people speaking for your brand to cadre of regimented spokespeople. To lock all of that down in a weighty set of guidelines.

All that has changed. Your brand is the relationship between you and your audience, a relationship in which your audience has as much say and control as you do. One that changes on a daily basis and is difficult to code into a set of static guidelines.

So we’re developing and practicing working in new ways that borrow from the lean and agile worlds of software and marketing. These new ways of working have complemented our established frameworks, which remain highly appropriate for some client needs.

I’d say my greatest learning, coming from a digital background into the branding world, is that not all innovations need to be digital first. Innovating the way we work, together and with our clients, is as beneficial as what we actually deliver.

Brands need to come out

Stirland Martin, account director, We Are AD

LGBT representation within a brand’s marketing campaigns can only be a good thing. It’s 2015 and brands should be attempting to be inclusive of the society they work within – whether that’s gender, race, sexuality or otherwise.

Brands have big voices and so if they’re doing something to positively impact on our culture- that can only be seen as progress in my eyes. Diversity should be celebrated - both within society and within the workplace – why wouldn’t you want your business to benefit from ideas that come from all different walks of life?

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