Human Centered Branding

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Information about Human Centered Branding

Published on July 5, 2009

Author: brandriveninnovation



Building brands that are fruitful platforms for innovation and design requires a human centred approach. Only human centred brands will be used by innovators and valued by users. Here's Zilver's take on human Centred Branding, plus a quick overview on how we build human centred brands.

Human centered branding erik roscam abbing//zilver innovation bv 16 juni 2009 Photo:

The purpose of this presentation is to learn… 1. what makes a strong brand 2. The benefits of a strong brand 3. How to build a strong brand

What makes a strong brand?

What makes a strong brand? A case study…

The logo

But behind the logo, there’s the product

With its aesthetics


Performance and functionality

Construction and use of materials

And then, there’s all those other expressions as well….


On- and offline communication

Service Photo: flickr, rob gruhl

These are all expressions, or touchpoints, of the brand

And we didn’t even discuss all other forms of brand behaviour yet: innovations, marketing, pr, mergers, acquisitions, SRE, supplier selection etc

Still, this is only the tip of the brand-iceberg Photo: ralph clevenger

Beneath the surface lies the source: Photo: ralph clevenger

The brand vision…. Photo: flickr, romeo 66

This vision is shared… Photo: flickr, red-cyan

Its both inspirational and practical Photo: bmw gina

It answers the questions why, how and what… Photo: flickr, captain andry

It is a vision on technology…

It is a vision on the future… Photo:

It is a vision on humanity…

It is a vision on contexts of use… Photo:

It’s a vision that’s focussed inward…. Photo: flickr, kim pierro

…questioning the organisation’s unique qualities Photo: flickr, phxwebguy

But its focussed outward as well… Photo: flickr, cand3la

…gathering insights in users and their aspirations Photo: flickr, mando2003us

So yes, the brand’s a bit more than just the logo!

summarizing: A brand is a shared vision that provides direction for behaviour and that is based on a deep understanding of the organisation’s qualities and how these are relevant for the customer or user.

What are the benefits of a strong brand?

Internally, a strong brand: Makes sure that actions are rooted in vision Provides a guideline for decisions Leads to coherent behaviour Provides a grip on the future Gives direction to innovation Leads to strong teams Keeps you focussed

Externally, a strong brand Offers a vision on the customer or user Separates the wheat from the chaff Turns authenticity into relevance Strengthens relationships Creates differentiation Facilitates choice Offers trust

How do you build a strong brand?

By involving the people who make the organisation…

…in a quest to look for the shared vision…

…and to make explicit…

…what’s implicitly allready there…

…and to find patterns and structure…

…to give those insights back to the people…

…for them to apply in their daily job.

What you have then is a human centered brand

That forms the basis for user exploration

That inspires the exploration of opportunities

That drives innovation efforts

And helps position the brand in a competitive field

And that’s well worth the effort!!

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