BrandingInsightPeople

Experience is Everything

Luxury Branding Explained In all our workshops and presentations, we at Black Ink are constantly preaching about how “Branding = Differentiation”. However, luxury brands are fundamentally different from mass-market brands, not only at the conceptual level (where rare = valuable) but also in terms of culture, attitude, image, style, beliefs, perspectives, general character and of course, target audiences.  When customers interact with one or more elements of a brand, that experience results in specific sensations, emotions and impressions that establish ...
BrandingDesigngrowth

Mahonia / A new fine dining concept

Mahonia is a new fine dining concept with a mission to introduce true gastronomy to the Arabian Gulf. Michelin-star Executive Chef Herve Pronzato from Paris heads a team of 40+ chefs who serve only SEVEN tables (talk about exclusive!) so naturally every single dish is designed and prepared as if it were a priceless work of art. Mahonia is elegantly set with plush furniture, priceless works of art adorning the walls (including a Picasso and a Chagall!), Murano glass sculptures ...
Case studyDesigngrowth

A Summer Brand All Year Long?

As the summer comes to an end, and Beirut quiets down a bit, it’s natural that we face some post-holiday blues. But those poor summer-based business owners are probably having heart palpitations! Beach clubs, summer resorts and seaside restaurants must all come to terms with the reality that they will now be facing yet another hard winter. Customers are now looking at Halloween, Christmas, New Years and Valentines – not exactly beachy activities – so what’s a resort to do?! ...
Case studyDesignStrategy

Destination Branding = People Branding

Creating a destination brand for a city or nation can be complicated, overwhelming and emotional. How do you apply a singular brand strategy to an entire population? Trying to be fair and balanced is a tricky task, and condensing the rich and complex history, culture and character of an entire society is intimidating to say the least. David Ogilvy famously said: “Advertising for countries should be designed to plant a long-term image in the reader’s mind. Illustrate things that are ...
BrandingPeopleStrategy

Branding Inside Out

Aligning Corporate Culture with Brand Strategy   Brand (what outsiders think of your organization) and culture (what insiders think of you) are two sides of the same coin – interconnected, intertwined and inseparable. Most people think branding is simply a marketing exercise, but at Blackink we know that brand strategy is fundamentally based on a company’s business strategy, and what turns it into a “brand” is when we infuse that strategy with the company’s natural culture, and in doing so ...
InsightPeopleStrategy

New Year, New Generation

Just when we thought we grasped the secrets of marketing to Millennials, a new generation is crashing into the consumer marketplace. As a matter of fact, Generation Z are becoming far more diverse, technologically dependent, and more in charge of their own purchases. Everyone has been talking and writing about them, yet very few know about their attitudes, behaviours, and interests. Gen Z are vastly different than millennials since they are the first generation to be born in a entirely ...
Brandingbusinessmanagement

Whats the point of a branding agency, anyhow?

Why We Exist Whats the point of a branding agency, anyhow?   Plenty of business-owners hesitate to hire a branding agency due to cost, and since all they’re looking for is “just a logo” many tend to forgo an agency’s talent and experience and simply hire an independent graphic designer or (even worse) buy an existing logo online. We find that the main factor is the serious lack of understanding of what a branding agency does and how it can ...
growthInsightStrategy

Your Brand = Your Story / How Storytelling Leads to ...

Stories bond us as they get passed down from one generation to the next, acting as vehicles for our values, beliefs and culture. For as long as there have been humans, there has been storytelling, a fundamental way to connect with each other, as evident through the cave drawings depicting daily life in the neolithic era, the oldest relics of human culture. When we meet someone new, we ask questions to get to know them. We try to unearth their ...
growthmanagementPeople

Two-Way Branding: Bridging the Internal to the External

“Success in business is all about people, people, people. Whatever industry a company is in, its employees are its biggest competitive advantage.” – Sir Richard Branson, Founder, Virgin Most companies spend heavily on advertising and marketing but very few bother investing their money on their staff, the very people who can make the brand come alive for your customers. Internal branding is one of the least talked-about subjects yet is is also one of the most crucial and critical aspects ...
businessgrowthStrategy

3 Tips to Avoid Startup Failure

Starting a new business is one of the scariest and most stressful things you will do and thats because only 20% of startups survive past their first year, 50% make it past 5 years and less than 30% will see their 10th anniversary. Scary stuff! The good news is that survival rates begin to flatten out after several years of operation – the longer a business lasts, the more likely it is to last even longer. As a branding consultancy, ...
BrandingInsightPeopleStrategy

Food as Culture: Building a Brand Experience in the F&B ...

“Your brand is your culture, your culture is your brand.” – Bill Taylor, founder of Fast Company   What makes your restaurant special? How can your wine brand stand out in a crowded market? Why is your bar different from its competitors?   Branding a food business has nothing to do with logos and graphics – it’s all about building a unique culture that caters to a distinctive community by appealing to their desires and lifestyle. F&B branding comes down ...
BrandingInsightPeople

Your Opinion Does Not Matter!

As all creative agencies know, clients tend to give their opinions on the work you’re presenting. We design artworks that are supposed to appeal to our clients’ customers, not our clients. But what most clients do is they select designs based on their personal preferences and not their customers. So we’re here to tell you that YOUR OPINION DOES NOT MATTER! Whether you like or dislike the logos, images or artworks we’re presenting is pointless – you are not your ...