23rd February 2016
Teamworks Design – Expert advice: Developing a life science brand
This year, Teamworks Design is celebrating thirty years of helping companies with their design and communications needs and working with science, technology and innovation brands.
30 years of branding knowhow
During this time our team has adapted to the exciting evolution of our industry; the technology, skills and communication channels have changed beyond all recognition. Teamworks was developing brand identities, brochures and business cards before the World Wide Web was a twinkle in Tim Berners-Lee’s eye. Our studio was a mess of drawing boards, marker pens, card and paper. Now our studio is a nice clean row of Mac computers.
Today, designs can be conceived, adopted and delivered to a target audience of millions within hours of receiving a brief. Print is alive and well but increasingly reserved for face-to-face and high quality communications. While email, websites, and social media have become the first and sometimes only point of contact between many suppliers and their customers, there remain some fundamentals that have not changed over time.
Your brand is a complex mixture of tangible and intangible attributes that make up the world’s perception of your organisation, services and products. Your brand is synonymous with your reputation and the assumptions made about your companies attitudes to technology, innovation, customer service, staffing and suppliers. Vitally important to the life science sector is your reputation for safety, for trustworthy ethical practice, for consistency and for hygiene. In a sector where it can take years to bring a successful product to market, you also need to look like you’re here to stay.
What might look fun for a wacky new software startup launching apps for teenagers may scream unreliable, unsafe and inexperienced for biotech startups.
What might look wholesome and traditional for a food company may seem unsophisticated and backward looking for a medical technology manufacturer.
Your brand identity
Your brand identity is the outward expression of your brand, including your logo, your name and the visual appearance of products, packaging, literature and websites. It is how customers differentiate your products or services from those of your competitors. Over time, your brand identity will be synonymous with your company’s values and reputation. So from the outset it pays to get it right, to plan ahead, to develop an identity that your company can grow into; an identity that not only says what you are and what is important to you now but will still say the right things in years to come.
Remember your stakeholders
Your brand identity will be viewed differently by many different stakeholders. Your investors may want to see your company as innovative, unique, valuable and scalable; your clinical partners will want reassurance that your company and products are safe, reliable and ethical. Your suppliers will want to know they will be paid and staff will want to be proud of the great company they work for. All of these views are important to factor in to developing a great brand identity.
If you legally protect your brand; names, logos and visual identities, then they are easier to value and to trade as well as saving heartache and expense if you are copied. As a member of MediWales, Teamworks Design works with a number of fellow members and experts, including trademark specialists, all of whom provide first class advice and guidance.
Protect your images and logo by providing good artwork to publishers, colleagues and collaborators. Don’t let it get squashed, stretched or printed in low resolution because they couldn’t find a good image!
We particularly like the brand identity developed by MediWales member Jellagen, with a bit of help from Teamworks Design. This young, innovative, startup has a great story to tell about the use of jellyfish collagen in clinical applications and its branding material supports their amazing story while conveying a clean, professional reliable image to its key stakeholders.