Recently, my company rolled out a new brand experience, the Farmer’s Pick Buffet. We’ve introduced this brand in a smaller community, but in a community (and a property) that has embraced it with fervor. This introduction also taught me the importance of field marketers understanding the brand and not just convincing them to like the creative associated with it.
We are also on our third year of a branded Jester’s Jam concert series which has allowed our smaller markets to gain as much visibility for their entertainment options as our larger markets. It took some convincing, but we’ve gone from six to seven locations, 29 to 53 concerts and increased attendance by about 50%. We’re also very close to getting to 5000 highly engaged Facebook fans. I can’t wait to see what we do this year. Branding works when you have a good strategy and a consistent promise that guides you.
Last week, I had a great meeting with our agency, the Media & Marketing Group. On our agenda was what we called “Isle 3.0”. You see, I came to this company with the challenge to update the Isle brand, making it relevant for today. We’ve spent the last four years slowly modernizing the brand. We chose evolution over revolution for a number of reasons, but as a result, the evolution can sometimes be seen as a simple desire to change the graphics and or the logo. In fact, I can’t say a week goes by without someone asking for the “new brand” when they mean a background to their ads. Sigh…
It occurs to me how important it is for our field marketers to understand branding and what it actual means in terms of a promise to our guests. When you understand that promise and visualize how this impacts operations, the logo and the color of your ad seems (with apologies to our creatives and artists all around the world) a little less important. So, I’ve sent each office a poster for inspiration where the logos are background and employees and the promise are front and center.