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The Problems of the Marketing and Design Industry

When we started off as a business, our goal as a design company was to make our customers happy by delivering what they wanted. However, as time passed, we started to identify a few issues in the industry and this is what we decided to do about them.

As graphic designers, our job was to take orders from our clients, deliver what they wanted, and make them happy. But it didn't take long for us to realize that these things did not really benefit our client’s business in the long term, and we started to see a few problems in the design industry.

1. Business focus was on themselves rather than their market

As a new business owner, it’s only natural that your main concern is your own company, as you’re still trying to figure things out and you might still have some preconceived ideas on what works and what doesn’t.

2. Design, branding and strategy was always an afterthought

Most companies start off with a really bad website or a really bad logo and decide that they will improve the quality of them later on. We believe these things should be thought of before so that they can make a much bigger impact on a business’ success.

3. People waste time and money on targets that they don't understand

During our first consultations, we noticed that a lot of business owners would tell us they spent x amount of money on a marketing plan and didn’t get any results. When we ask them what business they offer and who their target market is, and we try to connect the two, that’s when they realize why they didn’t get any results in the first place.

After finding these issues and thinking of how we could help resolve them, we decided to switch our focus as a business and, rather than just giving our clients exactly what they asked for even if it looks beautiful, we decided to give them our actual expertise to help them build a strategy that would really help their business succeed. Now, our main service is brand strategy, as that’s what we’re most passionate about, but we also want all of the other services we provide like website design, logo design, or marketing plans to have a business strategy behind them, too. We want to make sure we understand what our client’s goal is and how do we get there rather than just throwing money at the problem through marketing tactics.

What is Brand Strategy?

The brand is not just the logo, the colors, or the name. Yes, these are all part of the brand, but it’s way more than that. It’s also how the customer feels about your business. Everything you do as a business, verbal communication, written communication, customer service, etc. is what creates your brand. The brand behind your business is what determines the perception of your product or service, and what it’s worth. And perception is extremely important because that’s the reason why someone will decide to do business with someone else rather than you or vice versa.

If you don’t take advantage of that perception, every marketing or branding effort you make will end up wasting your time and money. This is why strategy is so important.

Here is what Branding Strategy looks like:

Stage 1 - Understanding your business

We need to understand who you are, what are your values are, what’s your purpose and what are your goals in order to help you develop your brands personality in order to determine the tone in which you will connect with your audience

Stage 2 - Understanding your market

How do they feel, what do they need, what are their problems and how are you helping them solve those problems.

Stage 3 - Understanding your place in the market

We also need to understand how you want to position your business: if you want to be the cheapest in the industry, or the best, or the experts… This helps us to determine the visual and written communication you need to have with your audience

Stage 4 - Develop your brand personality

The first 3 steps are the base and foundation for this. Your brand personality is what your business sounds like and how you connect with your audience.

Stage 5 - Define your business goals

We want to understand not only your long-term goals, but also your day to day, what are your revenue goals, and your internal systematic goals.

Stage 6 - Develop your marketing strategy

This is where we brainstorm together with the client and talk about all the ideas we have. We compile all this information and then we come up with a plan.

Stage 7 - Craft your visual brand

This refers to the imagery and style of what your business will look like.

Stage 8 - Analyze and evolve accordingly

This is very important because times change and businesses change, so as a business owner you need to stay up to date with that’ s going on. Constant research is necessary in order to accomplish this. We’re happy to have a consultation with you from time to time to help you go in the right direction.

What We Do Now

Design will always be part of what we do, but the core of everything for us is strategy. Strategy is always a part of every project that we do and every decision that we make as a business. We love to work with business that have vision, and to help them go from point A to point B to achieve their goals. Our objective is, more than just offering graphic design services, to become their partner through ongoing brand consulting.

We’d love to help your business grow, too! Feel free to contact us for a free consultation on how we can build a branding strategy for you.


For more information on this subject, read our blog What Is Brand Strategy?

Why We Decided to Rebrand...Should You? will also provide more insight on this topic.

Kimberly Norris | |


Marketing Blog, Graphic Design, Branding, Advertising Rogers, AR, Marketing Rogers, AR, Branding Rogers, AR, Brand Strategy, Brand Consulting

A Note From the Author

As a business owner, brand strategist, and graphic designer I run in to questions and ideas every day.

As the owner of Norris Design, I started out wanting to solely be a designer, but education changed the way I thought, the way I viewed business and the way I viewed my role in helping other's businesses.  

Graphic design will always be my original love, but as I grew in knowledge, I realized the small view of design for the sake of something beautiful was such a disservice to businesses.

Businesses needed much more than just graphic design.  They needed to see the bigger picture of their businesses from the perspective of a designer.  Once I realized that branding had a huge role in large businesses that see amazing success but very few small businesses even think about branding or brand strategy, I realized that if I could offer a brand strategy view as a consultant rather than just an order taker graphic designer, I could actually move the needle in their businesses.

This is the beginning of where I started to fall in love with business, marketing, branding, brand strategy, consulting and brand building. 

It all started with education after college.

I obsessively read articles, listened to podcasts, watched videos, read books, and took classes.  This was to fulfill this desire to be more involved in the businesses side of design rather than just design alone.

So, this is why I wright. I appreciate other people's perspective and I hope that one day, mine can help someone else.

Kimberly Norris

Brand Strategy

We create a results-based brand strategy for all aspects of your company to foster customer trust and build brand acknowledgment over time.

Logo/Brand Design

Creating brand identities is our passion. We believe it takes insight into your business, your customers, and your hopes for your business to build the best logo possible. And we’re willing to take the time to do this.

Brand Consultation

We’re happy to meet with you on a consulting basis about your brand strategy. As your Brand Consultant, I’ll periodically check-in after the initial strategy session, on a continual basis, to make any adjustments or revisions to keep your brand and messaging on track. 

Print Marketing

Think of us as your one-stop-shop for printed marketing materials. We create thoughtful designs and take care of the printing for you. This can save you time and money. Our printing services include business cards, brochures, flyers, and more.

Website Design

Your website is crucial to your business, We design custom websites that are responsive to all platforms, are easy to navigate, and present your company professionally and clearly.

Search Engine Optimization

We offer affordable SEO that actually gets results.  This service includes on-page and off page SEO.  We offer local, regional, and national SEO Services with not long-term contracts.

Our Services

Let's talk!

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