“Nearly two-thirds of small businesses invest in branding efforts to improve their visibility and recognition in the market.”
We can see that branding is not an additional endeavour for your business.
It’s a crucial function that will set how you will appear to your audience and market, stand out from competitors, and adapt to changes.
Initially, Startups and Emerging Corporates might lack (not necessarily) the resources they need to master the art of storytelling.
Be it team (in terms of breadth and depth), cost, and even more, a clear view and fresh perspective on the market and business.
Hence, they often encounter this question –
Whose help should we seek?
An In-House team that knows as much as any of us or a Brand Consulting Service whose branding experience is worth leveraging?
We evaluate a Brand Consulting Service and In-House team on various factors to help you choose what best suits your needs.
In an Infographic (A Pro Tip):
You can begin your branding with a Brand Consulting Service, as their expertise will help you set the foundation.
Then, you can invest in a team while you build your brand.
Once you have a team, both can work together to choose and do what’s best for your brand.
- Expertise and Experience
A Brand Consulting Service can help you study the market, know it inside-out, and find the gap you can fill with your product and brand.
They guide and give directions where you can move in to build your brand, grow it, and expand your business.
On the other hand, an In-House team understands your company culture and values well – which is crucial for building a good brand and business.
An In-House team can share its knowledge with Brand Consulting Firms to help them build strategies and reach your envisioned state.
While starting, Brand Consulting Services are more cost-effective.
They work on a project basis and price for the value they give (which is pretty flexible).
You don’t have to invest in their training or give them benefits.
However, your business should think long-term and start making a small team fast.
You can help them know your brand well and work with the Brand Consulting Firm.
Your team can learn from their experience and prepare for a future where you majorly do things In-House.
But it doesn’t mean a Brand Consulting firm will lose value as you scale or grow.
It implies that your team and the Consultancy will now be able to add to each other’s strengths and take your business to the envisioned state faster.
Brand Consulting Services can expand its offering to serve you and meet your firm’s needs, regardless of size or industry.
They have a team of trained people with diverse skill sets who can come in when required to add value and not be involved when there’s no need.
They can help you when you have to change your branding strategy due to changing market and consumer conditions as they are quick to adapt and find the opportunity areas.
Initially, there might be some friction in your In-House team’s way and the transition (adaptation).
But as we said, when your internal team works with a Brand Consulting firm, it will be able to learn and execute the tricks of the trades.
An In-House team can integrate well with the rest of your firm, which makes it easier and quicker for you to react to changing business needs and scale for growth.
A Brand Consulting Service has the team, the skills, the tools, and the processes that enable them to get your work done on time and as per your expectations.
They are reliable when it comes to:
- Implementing a change that’s the need of the hour (reacting to a change in the market)
- Launching an initiative within strict deadlines and on a grand scale, or
- Setting a faster pace to your usual branding activities.
One of the other reasons behind their efficiency is that their efforts and resources focus on Branding and Marketing.
Note: It doesn’t mean they have a narrow view and only care about Branding.
It means they have the luxury to view Branding as an independent pond that merges into the vast sea of Business.
An In-House team doesn’t get this luxury, as they get engaged in other work and responsibilities from other teams.
- Fresh Perspective
Brand Consulting Services don’t spend all their time working on your brand and aren’t emotionally invested/ attached to it.
Hence, they can approach a problem rationally and make decisions freely (without being influenced by anyone within the team or anything within the firm).
Brand Consultancies watch your business and your market from an outsider’s lens.
They can see your strengths and build on them, find your weakness and work on them, prepare for threats, and spot growth opportunities.
As we can see, there’s no one answer to who’s better: Brand Consulting firm or In-House team.
They both bring unique value to the table, and the best answer is to combine their strengths to get the best of both worlds.
While a Brand Consulting Service can give you the start you need and be of value at all stages, you should focus on building a team and training them for the long-term future.
That’s all from our side. We would love to know your opinion.
Pandora’s Box is a Top Consulting Firm that mentors startups and emerging corporates to unbox branding and marketing for their businesses.