At the textbook level, a brand is the combination of tangible and intangible perceptions that exist in the minds of a customer base or targeted audience. For a law firm, the proper development and stewardship of a brand translates into a consistent series of images and messages that improves perceptions and loyalty among existing clients, attracts new clients, and supports attorney recruitment and retention.
We typically recommend a series of steps in order to effectively conduct a branding assignment. Our process begins with interviews with members of the firm as well as a select number of clients, an evaluation of the firm's current marketing and communications efforts, and an analysis of the firm's competition.
Based on this assessment we move forward in crafting an overview of the firm's characteristics that are perceived to be recognizable, differentiating, beneficial or appealing to constituents.
These strategic insights are the basis for a Brand Architecture: the foundational document that captures the qualities and values of the firm and where it stands in the marketplace. Properly articulated and managed, this Brand Architecture provides a framework for every future marketing component for the firm, as well as greater understanding, clarity and focus in its other strategic decisions.
This work then leads to a number of recommendations for the messages, images, collateral materials and other tools that drive the tactical implementation of the brand.