LET YOUR WALLS DO THE TALKING…
The importance of environmental branding & the effect that it has on your business
Google, Virgin, Facebook, these brands have the ability to recognize the value of input versus output. It is important in environmental branding to recognize your brands’ direction – what is the brands’ point of differentiation, what kind of market are you targeting, what purpose does your brand stand by? If the direction is clear, this should extend into the brands’ environmental space. It is all about creating connections and experiences. Workspaces are a business tool, just as effective as the rest. Office spaces reflect and reinforce the company’s core values.
“THE MOST SUCCESSFUL BUSINESSES ARE THOSE THAT DEVELOP ENVIRONMENTS WHERE EVERYONE GENERATES IDEAS, AND CHALLENGES THE NORM”.
Companies generally allocate an annual budget for brand promotion which includes packaging, advertising, brand colors, tone of voice, and web marketing – however, many companies do not recognize the importance of branding in the workspace itself. Environmental branding aids in articulating a clear image and tone of voice which directly relates to the brands’ values. This, in return, helps educate and inform the employees and visiting clients; just as a brochure or website would. Space branding motivates the potential client to emotionally connect with a brand, and first impressions always count. The environment not only also has a major impact on potential clients, but on the employees within the company itself.
Why? Because organizations that consider the workspace to be a culture of creativity are more likely to motivate their employees and keep them happy and loyal. The director of marketing at recruitment firm Reed, Mark Rhodes, states that “all employers stand to gain by promoting creativity at work. The most successful businesses are those that engender creative thinking and develop environments where everyone generates ideas, has a voice, asks questions and challenges the norm”. Google paved the way when it comes to environmental branding. The brand is famous for its staff perks; offices have pool tables, bowling alleys, gym memberships and, perhaps best
of all, free food. These elements are used to keep the employees happy. It is motivation enough to get to work, and to get there excited and ready. Google seems to have started a ripple effect, let’s call it the Google effect, and many other companies have joined in, looking for ways to boost engagement within their employees by offering activities and incentives that ensure optimism in the workplace. They have even appointed a chief happiness officer, whose sole job is to maintain the happiness of staff and ensure productivity.
Virgin is well known for its innovation and creativity, too. Many of the ideas implemented by Virgin Management were ideas which originated from members of the staff. Not only do they listen to their employees’ needs, they apply them, if valuable. Virgin’s head of people operations Sharon Pommells explained that when they transitioned into a new office space, they asked their staff what was considered “hot or not” and, ranging from their feedback, they implemented the practical and achievable ideas – which varied from aesthetics to environmentally-friendly implementations within the workspace. At Virgin, employee ideas are submitted through a forum, however usually only three are taken on each year. The pivotal point to achieving workable employee innovation lies in management. Ideas need to first be heard, assessed, then potentially implemented. When employees feel as though they are more involved, they are more engaged and thus more productive.
Let your walls do the talking… In taking a look at the actual physical environment of an organization; architecture and design are important. The branded environments’ design workspace is an extension of the brands reputation. Interior elements need to feature the brand colors, signage is needed to reinforce the brand image, the quality furniture and fixtures speak for the quality of the brand itself. Companies need to understand the significance of functionality; what is practical versus what looks good. The entire physical workspace is a reflection of smart strategy – you want to leave the impression that the entire company or organization is in line with their beliefs and values. This also relates to each company’s point of differentiation – as each brand has a significant factor that stands out or sets them apart from the rest.
When a company can foster a work environment based on creativity, they are likely to keep their employees motivated at work. This in turn leads to loyalty – it is an extension of integrity, the upkeep of sticking to one’s values and being consistent between your principles and actions. Without loyalty in an organization, the company may find itself dragging due to the employees needs not met. It works both ways; employers need to satisfy employees in order to gain their loyalty. Given the endless routes to designing and planning a workspace, the employers should always approach their solutions in a strategic way. Involve those at the bottom of the company as well as on top. Most importantly, listen to your employees, as they are the inner functions of the overall machine.
Brand Lounge is an award-winning branding consultancy and partner of Trout and Partners in the region. We have the unique ability to help you uncover your brand’s point of differentiation. Whether you own an existing business or want to open a new business, you need to be aware that everything you put in will affect the outcome. At Brand Lounge, we specialize in experience branding. Through differentiation and by using our strategy-led methodology, we will assist you in reaching your ultimate business goals. Contact us if you have any branding concerns at firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact us if you have any branding concerns.
You can reach us through our website www.brandloungeme.com