• May 12, 2013

A brand is the sum of a thousand small gestures

When Hallam Students’ Union, asked us to help them assess their brand and create and embed a set of brand values that would connect with their members, I had this quote from Disney in mind…

A brand is a living entity – and it is enriched or undermined cumulatively over time, the product of a thousand small gestures.
Michael Eisner, Disney's CEO 1984-2005

We believe that brand is about values and experiences rather than images and logos.

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To understand the current brand values and to help develop new ones we brought together disconnected members and staff to form a ‘brand action group’.

The first brand action group workshop took participants through a creative process to talk about brand values in terms of personalities,
words, colours, shapes and abstract images. They created mood boards and recorded video ‘pitches’ for a new set of values which were shown to the senior management team.

We then worked with the senior management team using survey research on students’ perceptions of the current brand, alongside the pitches to define a new set of brand values.

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Following this, the brand action group came back together to audit brand touchpoints against the new brand values looking at
everything from the logo to the bar menu, through to staff uniforms and events A video about the brand audit day can be viewed here.

The result of the project was a plan of action to deliver great member experiences through the sum of a thousand small gestures that are unmistakably ‘Hallam SU’.