Brand communication: Another business field at hmmh
Bremen, 2 May 2013 – Brands are increasingly penetrating everyday life – jogging with the Nike+ app, cooking with the Maggi website, watching TV via the Red Bull Youtube channel. Brands are seizing their place in consumers’ lives. And digital channels, with their wide range of interaction options, require a completely new definition of brand value. As demonstrated by the Kodak or Rover examples, the so-called digital Darwinism is also claiming prominent victims. For brands which have not promptly faced up to the challenges of databased marketing or digital brand management, it is now high time they did. Digital agency hmmh has been helping companies develop digital interfaces to their customers for almost two decades, prompting Brand Communication to become a key business field. edding is one of four reputable brands to have placed their trust in the Bremen-based agency’s expertise since the start of the year.
Brands need to take into account their customers’ increased demands and requirements online
It’s not just user behaviour which has changed drastically in recent years; consumers’ standards for brand communication have also risen. Elaborate image or product ads, concept stores or special events still only act as competitive edges to a certain extent. Brands seeking to demonstrate their presence must try to immerse themselves in the daily routines of their fans, and provide sensible and even entertaining (dialogue) offers. Brands cannot win on the Internet per se. It’s the experience which counts.
“The digital options today place much greater demands on brand management than was the case just a few years ago. Fans, customers and interested parties of a brand want to be heard, they want to have influence, and they want direct contact with their favourite brands,” says Thorben Fasching, Director Marketing & User Experience. “The brand must be positioned as a personality, it must tell stories, and present itself boldly, rigorously and with extensive attention to detail across all media and channels.”
DNA decides: The digital agencies’ victory lap
Agencies are also faced with completely new challenges. Apart from refining the brand profile, it is particularly the interactive customer involvement in the respective brand world – the brand experience – which has now become the central focus of digital marketing strategies. Digital agencies with brand expertise are increasingly winning out against the classic agencies. Digital service design or storytelling with branded entertainment offers requires a deep understanding of technologies and mechanisms. Agencies with a digital DNA currently have the advantage here, and digital agency hmmh, founded in 1995, is also benefiting from this.
Over the last few years, the Bremen-based company, which also has offices in cities such as Hamburg and Berlin, has been placing much greater emphasis on the business field of strategic and operational brand communication, in addition to digital commerce. The Planning & Concept, Online Marketing and Social Media teams have been strengthened, and two experienced industry experts in Asse Meyer (Head of Brand Experience) and Kerstin Schuman (Head of Digital Marketing) have been secured as managers. The units advising and supporting hmmh customers in relation to digital brand communication are led by Thorben Fasching, Director Marketing & User Experience.
Greater focus on digital brand communication
“A brand sets itself apart with its image, through which it of course ultimately seeks to achieve sales. This is where hmmh provides added value: As an agency for digital commerce & brand communication, we understand why consumers buy online and how the brand experience contributes to this,” Thorben Fasching explains. So it hardly comes as a surprise that refocusing divisions with greater emphasis placed on digital brand communication bears fruit very quickly. Since the start of the year, hmmh has thus been able to secure some real heavyweights of the brand world in the form of edding and others.
“edding represents expressiveness – so a strong, impressive presence in the digital world is a key component of our brand communication”, says Angelika Schumacher, Director International Brand Management at edding, to explain the company’s driving motivation. "Even in the past, we focused on campaigns revolving around the Internet, e.g. with our “Wall of Fame” live drawing surface. This is coupled with various other activities and web specials, as well as the intensive further development of digital channels, such as our company website. This is where we enter into dialogue with our customers – and vice versa.”