A rose by any other name

So much of a company's identity is digital that IT now has a role to play in any corporate rebranding effort.

flowers roses basket bouquet
Paul Long (CC BY 2.0)

I know it is heady stuff for a self-described IT guy to quote Shakespeare, but I thought it was a nice change from the typical IT cliché of putting lipstick on a pig.

Let's say your company is rebranding. It may be a major change including a name change, or it may be a new corporate identity, or it may be a new set of corporate colors. Regardless of the scope of the rebranding effort, it is not just the Chief Marketing Officer's job to rebrand, IT has a role to play.

My post on Humpty Dumpty talked about making it easy for people to act the way you want them to act by making it easy and convenient for them to do so. In a rebranding effort, IT can help to streamline the changes that need to occur.

So much of a company's identity these days is tied up in the company's digital identity that long gone are the days when it was simply the company's letterhead, physical signage, and executives' business cards that represented the company. The look of the website, the signature block on every email, the colors in the presentation template, the hold music on the phone, the voice-over on the auto-attendant, and so on, are all based on technology today.

You have a role to play because although IT does not drive the branding, IT enables the branding.

IT generates templates...

...for presentations, for invoices, for letters, and for most other communication which used to be solely paper-based. Having these templates accurately represent what the company wants to represent is a joint effort between the IT parts of the business and the non-IT parts. I've said previously that I like lawyers and so I need to add Marketing people to my list as well. The IT and the Marketing departments should be on great terms.

As a business defines itself to its customers, a part of that definition is around how customers expect, and are expected, to interact with the business. IT enables these interactions through entry points like web-sites and phone systems and then coordinates the interaction through workflows. In order for an quote to become an order, dozens of steps may need to occur in a short period of time, and IT can help automate the flow and the approval process.

IT protects the company's knowledge capital

Whether it is formal protections like patents and trademarks, or electronic protections to prevent a "bot" from downloading the full price-list from your web-site, IT plays a role. Branding is about selling what is special about your company, and IT's protection of the "secret sauce" is critical to having a unique brand.

If your company is rebranding, or even if it is merely enhancing its digital identity, go talk to your Marketing team to see how IT can help. Your joint success will smell sweet!

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