Our job is fun and rewarding. But, it’s not because we get to stroke our creative egos, and design great projects for great clients (although that certainly helps). The real reward is knowing that what we do is designed to make a difference, to motivate and to sell our client’s products and services. Below is a growing list of comprehensive branding case studies.
CASE STUDY #1 — New Product Launch
The client was rolling out a unique, new manufacturing product, the key feature of which is advanced X-ray contaminant detection technology at about the same price point as less effective metal detector contaminant detectors. Faced with a limited budget, the client was seeking cost-effective options to reach the consumer with their message.
To get consumers to recognize the revolutionary nature of this new product, a brand campaign was focused on the copy “Think outside the aperture” reinforced by the image of a food engineer confined to the aperture of a food manufacturing metal detector. After developing this brand strategy, Balius Marketing proposed a narrowly focused print campaign, with support from direct response marketing materials.
We proposed a testing program which would allow interested potential customers to send samples of their food products to our client for contaminant testing using the new technology. The lab testing offered an opportunity for the consumer to see real results based on their food product. This had the added benefit of allowing our client to respond directly to the portion of their potential market who are most likely to be early adopters of the new technology. This effectively sorted all of the “hot” leads out of a larger list of “cold” leads.
In support of this program, we produced a demonstration video on DVD as well as printed brochures and other materials introducing and explaining the innovative features the product brings to the marketplace. Consumers who responded to the product testing program were sent a product overview brochure, designed with a pocket folder which contained demo video and a technical specifications sheet. Inquires were delivered on a business reply form available in direct mail solicitations, at trade shows, on a product page of the corporate web site, and as a blow-in card in select trade journals.
With a limited budget, Balius Marketing & Web Design developed a product launch targeting consumers with real potential interest in a new product. A narrowly targeting direct mail campaign keeps printing and delivery costs down, and with support from print advertising and the overall brand strategy, a strong and lasting impression was made in the marketplace.
CASE STUDY #2 — Literature fulfillment
As with many large businesses, our client needed to respond quickly and efficiently to customer and distributor requests for product brochures and other physical marketing materials. Leads and requests were received from a variety of sources, and the physical assets being requested were taking up significant storage space for the client. The volume and range of products, and methods of delivery also required an accurate inventory so reorders of printed material could anticipate the various needs. With our client, as with many businesses, these tasks were handled by a member of their staff who also had other responsibilities. As a result, requests for information were not also given the attention they might receive given full-time, professional oversight.
At Balius Marketing & Web Design these tasks are handled by a dedicated, professional staff who understand the client’s specific needs and priorities. We worked closely with the client to understand their needs, and created a customized response system to meet or exceed the demands. We now receive all leads and requests, maintain a database of this information, and deliver the requested materials usually within one business day. We also warehouse virtually all physical marketing assets for the client in a clean, controlled environment.
With the web-based database interface, Balius Marketing & Web Design allows authorized users to browse the full catalog of material, to place requests for any number of copies, and have them sent anywhere in the world. The inventory reporting is automated to allow product managers to monitor ordering activity, and place orders to replenish depleted stock directly through the web interface. Priorities can be set by the client to limit orders, helping to regulate inventory and also to monitor the ordering activities of the individual users of the online system. Balius Marketing & Web Design also handles the direct lead fulfillment, responding to requests for information received at trade shows or in response to direct mail. This activity is also reflected in the automated inventory reporting to the supervising member of the client company.
The client’s literature and lead fulfillment can be monitored from the office, or on the road. Automated inventory, delivery and physical storage under one roof offers the client more control of costs and other resources. Requests are measured against established priority standards and in most cases, items are shipped the same day the request is received. The up-to-date, web-based interface allows the user to be given an estimated delivery time when they place an order.
CASE STUDY #3 — Process Illustration
An international client had recently acquired as many as 85 smaller companies resulting in a line of more than 700 individual products. With 15 different market segments served, and more than 300 distribution outlets, the client required tools to educate the distributors, consumers and even employees about the extent and depth of the full product line.
Presented with this request, Balius Marketing & Web Design proposed the creation of market process illustrations. For each market segment, an illustration would represent the industrial processes of that market segment with call-outs representing the various applications for the client’s full product line.
Illustrations were created in three-dimensional perspective, with slightly exaggerated scale, for each market segment or significant portion of a market segment. These illustrations were designed to be used in a variety of ways, including posters for trade shows and client offices, capability brochures, direct mail, print advertising, presentations and other peripheral marketing materials. The creative process for each illustration involved marketing and sales personnel, product managers and engineers to ensure the representations were accurate, and would best showcase the depth and range of the client’s product line.
To date ten of these illustrations have been completed for these markets: Fossil-Fueled Power, Nuclear Power, Upstream Petroleum Processing, Downstream Petroleum Processing, Coal Processing, Cement Manufacturing, Steel Manufacturing, Security, and Food Manufacturing for the Processed Meats, Snack Food and Commercial Bakery market segments. Illustrations for several other market segments are planned or currently underway.
The illustrations as an educational tool changed the corporate climate for the client. The simple, graphic representation of each industrial market process allowed for a depth of understanding. Our client provided the feedback that the resulting improved awareness among employees and partners alone provided measurable improvements in revenue.
CASE STUDY #4 — Brand Identity
The client’s product is a series of educational seminars presented at a large annual conference, as well as smaller workshops and distance learning opportunities throughout the year. Each annual conference, and many of the smaller related pieces, were designed individually by various firms, as each occasion arose. This process permitted a slight lack of brand consistency. This client also is very concerned with cost-effective marketing.
Balius Marketing & Web Design had been asked to design the materials for the client’s next scheduled annual conference. We proposed the creation of an overall market and design strategy for their brand. We helped the client identify the component parts of their brand, and presented concepts designed to help them create and maintain a clear brand strategy. The concepts were informed by previous brand decisions, keeping the strongest and most effective elements already established. The identification of brand components, some of which were only in planning stages during this process, allowed Balius Marketing & Web Design to help devise a flexible design system, using variation in color and imagery to differentiate the component products. Generally, we present a client with three design approaches to any project. The final production is based on a dialogue between Balius Marketing & Web Design and the client to find the strongest elements among those brought to the table by either partner. An overall brand strategy, once approved, reduces or eliminates the need to think “from the ground up” on future, related projects—an approach which allows the client to maintain much greater control over both timeline and budget.
Balius Marketing and Web Design’s solution reduced the client’s long-term expenses while offering clearer focus for their brand identity. By identifying the various brand elements as part of a greater whole, the client was able to work through the corporate response and approval process more effectively. This will allow future projects to be based on concepts and execution which have already received approval from all levels of the decision making process of the client company. Making these decisions with an overall strategy keeps costs down in many ways as new projects arise. The client approval process is streamlined, and the concept process at the design firm is narrowed, as well. These help ensure lower costs, and can potentially accommodate shorter project timelines. We realize that reducing the number of necessary meetings saves more than just time and money.