Envisioning Your Brand

Determining your brand is not only a complex undertaking, it is also very personal when done properly.

Much like dieting (because I can relate everything to dieting!), building your brand is very much a lifestyle change. It is much more than the right graphics. A one-time project it is not. Your brand should be comprised of the company’s personality, vision, core competencies and mission. The impressions that you make, as well as the words people will use to describe your company to others, are the basic framework of your brand.

So when Incept decided to get laser-focused on the blood bank industry, it became very clear that our existing brand – which, at the time, had taken somewhat of a “be everything to everyone” approach – was not going to get us where we wanted to go. After much deliberation on the right approach, we decided to enlist the help of NextLevel Thinking. NextLevel Thinking is a strategic marketing firm that has extensive experience in the blood bank industry, so our decision to partner with them was, well, strategic!

I sat down with NextLevel Thinking’s managing partner, Eric Poerschke, to ask him some questions about defining the Incept brand…

Billie: “What were the steps taken to begin the process of brand identification for Incept?”

Eric: “Incept has a great reputation and relationship with their blood center clients, so we started there. We asked their clients what they liked most/least; we asked about strengths and weaknesses, etc. All in all, we spent a considerable amount of time with each client to learn that the one thing Incept does best is care more about the client’s goals and objectives, in many cases, than the clients do themselves.”

Billie: “And how does information that strong develop into a brand?”

Eric: “It became clear to us when talking to Incept’s clients that they had a unique ability to converse with blood donors in a way that made the donor feel good about what they were going to do. This is where the term “conversational marketing” at Incept was born.

Another strength that we uncovered was Incept’s ability to understand their client’s needs. In fact, we feel like Incept puts their clients and their client’s customers at the center of ALL they do.”

Billie: “What are the key elements being used today to deliver this information?”

Eric: “The most significant elements are the Incept Listen and Incept Lead philosophies. Incept Listen is an in-depth analysis of a blood center’s goals, objectives and best practices. This is a great way for Incept and their clients to get to know each other in a way that ultimately ends up being mutually beneficial.

The result is Incept Lead, a formal, comprehensive, written road map that clearly defines the blood center’s successes and challenges, and ultimately offers recommendations for the future to ensure goals and objectives are met.

What’s powerful about these processes are that they take place on an ongoing basis which ensures that strategies stay current and new objectives are always considered.”

Billie: “If you could tell our readers one thing about Incept, what would that be?”

Eric: “Incept is a company where relationships matter more than anything else. As a result, they really do care about their client’s results. Incept’s clients knew this all along. Our job was to develop the message that told the rest of the world.”

Thanks go out to Eric for taking the time to talk with me.

I’d love to hear from all of you about your brand. How did you develop it? What does it mean to you?

Talk to me. I’m listening…

About the Author

Billie Johnson is the Vice President of New Client Results at Incept. Incept is a conversational marketing firm that specializes in developing and strengthening relationships with your current and potential clients, on your behalf.

Billie has over 16 years of experience in developing strategic campaigns that engage audiences in productive and meaningful conversations on behalf of client organizations. For over 11 years, Billie and the team at Incept have focused their efforts on having conversations that educate and inspire donors across the nation to help save lives.