Journal

Articles by Chris Lumsden

Brand Definition, Life After Launch

Why content is more important than brand.

I think that content v branding is like David v Goliath. Branding gets all the headline billing and razzmatazz, but content is ruthlessly efficient in getting the job done.

Brand Insight, Brand Strategy

Why Are All Whisky Brands The Same?

In our time as a brand firm, we’ve done our fair share of work in the whisky sector. And the one thing that has been consistent across it has been that all the brands seem to be saying more or less the same thing.

Good to know

How to Buy Branding Services

Every month we get, on average three new business inquiries through the website. What’s interesting is how these inquiries vary in terms of approach. Some are highly professional, others… well, leave some things to be desired.

Marketing Strategy, Brand Guardianship

Branding for global, local or both?

When you take on a brand project with a global business, the thorny issue about how to deal with the various regions and the language translations is always there, sitting just below the surface.

Good to know, Brand Guardianship

Sustainability is Damaging Brands

Post pandemic, it feels like the sustainability trend is going to dominate. For a tired old brand cynic, it’s the next cab off the rank for brands to fetishise now that AR, QR codes and social media seem to have normalised.

Brand Insight, Brand Definition

Brand Building Recipe for Success

There’s a formula for brand success and it’s really no different from that tried-and-true recipe you always go back to. When it comes to brand, we know what works – simplicity, quality and consistency – and it’s what’s worked for a very long time.

Brand Definition, Brand Guardianship

The Most Important Aspect of Modern Branding? Discipline

The world of branding is notorious for making changes to brands all the time. It's as if we need to keep changing to attract attention, when in actual fact, it's the opposite that's true. The more brands stay the same, the more recognisable they become.

Brand Insight, Market Research, Trends & Innovation, Marketing Strategy, Brand Analysis

Introducing Clarity Reports

We’re delighted to announce the launch of our first product from Good, the Clarity Report. We’ve been working on creating these reports for about eight months now, so it’s a relief to get it out in the world.

Brand Insight, Market Research, Trends & Innovation

How We Found Clarity During the Pandemic

From a business perspective, the pandemic’s been shit. It’s forced lots of businesses to close, increased layoffs and generated tons of debt. At Good we were not spared. We stared into the abyss along with everyone else and wondered…will we make it out?

Good to know, Brand Definition

7 Reasons Why Brand Language Matters

There’s loads written on tone of voice and it’s an important component of a successful brand. I want to go a bit further and say that language is about more than just TOV, it can work harder for brands.

Brand Strategy, Brand Creation & Evolution

Branding By Algorithm

I’ve been thinking a wee bit about what happens to brand in this digital world, and one of my conclusions is that it’s being overpowered, and we’re now “branding by algorithm”.

Brand Insight, Trends & Innovation

Six Ways Recruitment Firm Brands Bleed Value to their Competition

One industry I think is particularly behind the curve in the brand space is recruitment. They misunderstand the value of ‘brand’ and the disproportionately important role it plays in customer interaction which happens primarily in the digital sphere.

Brand Guardianship

How to Tell if Your Brand is Leaking Value

I like the term ‘leaking value’ when it’s attached to brand. For me, it perfectly encapsulates the idea of what happens to organisations when they have a brand problem that’s hidden from view.

Good to know

Do clients choose us or do we choose them?

For us, I suppose the reality is that it’s somewhere in between.

Brand Architecture

How many products does a brand need?

There’s not necessarily a right or wrong answer here. But in my opinion, the fewer, the better

Good to know, Marketing Strategy, Brand Strategy

Do you need to write a brief?

This is going to sound controversial, but many of the written briefs we receive are crap and aren’t worth it.

Brand Strategy, Brand Architecture

Time to Review Your Brand Architecture

Brand architecture challenges are the branding equivalent of pulled muscles. They cause pain and frustration, but they don’t create enough of a problem to take you entirely offline to focus on the fix.

Brand Insight, Brand Analysis

Understanding Business Change During Coronavirus

I've got an old school pal who has a cracking family business. It's the oldest craft bakery in Scotland and has been in his family for 190 years. (No pressure there then).

Good to know, Content Delivery

Good is Good Enough

One of our worst habits as a business is trying to make things brilliant, when they only need to be good.

Brand Insight

Brand Paranoia

Let’s talk about paranoia in branding. It’s something I’ve noticed a lot over the years - mostly with clients overestimating how much equity there is in their brand.

Brand Strategy, Brand Architecture

Brand Architecture - Don’t forget the due diligence

When businesses merge or acquire other businesses, they don’t spend enough time thinking about what to do with the brands, products and portfolios. This is our experience anyway. 

Marketing Strategy

Brand Consultant vs Management Consultant

Is it ridiculous for us to consider ourselves a management consultancy?

Good to know, Brand Insight

The Good MBO - Learnings From The Journey

We recently completed a Management Buyout at Good. Keith, my co-founder and partner of 15 years, left the business and I now have four new partners from the management team.

Good to know, Brand Strategy, Environments

Tips on Working Internationally

When we started, our first ambition was to open an office in London. It’s an inconvenient truth that we needed to have an office there in order to be taken seriously by clients. (Thankfully, I think it’s beginning to change now).

Brand Insight, Brand Strategy

The Importance of Brand Expertise

I’ve been asked to prepare a presentation on how Good has come to appreciate and sell the value of design. When I sat down to think about this journey, it was hard to plot how we got to where we are.

Brand Creation & Evolution

How to build a brand: Start with words

From time to time we face an interesting moment during that first client presentation when we’re introducing a new brand. We’ll take them through values and positioning matrices. Through the insight we’ve gleaned to give the brand the best possible start.

Marketing Strategy

Creating the right marketing strategy

This might sound overly simplistic, but one of the questions we keep asking ourselves (and our clients) is ‘how does this contribute to the plan?’

Brand Naming

Five Tips for your next Naming Project

TalkTalk have launched FibreNation – a company to help build a new broadband network for Britain. And we worked with them to name and brand the new organisation.

Market Research

Measuring Design Effectiveness

Let's be honest. There’s no straightforward methodology to measuring design effectiveness.

Internal Comms

The Role of Brand in Internal Comms

Our top 5 tips for creating effective internal comms.

Good to know, Brand Strategy

What's the Difference between Branding and Marketing?

We need to share our expertise in order to build a better understanding of difference between the two.

Good to know, Brand Strategy

Positioning Makes Marketing Simple

A strong well positioned brand acts like a marketing rudder. It creates coherence and simplicity, effortlessly sorting tactics from strategic activity.

Good to know, The SimpleTruth

Why brand onions don’t work

I don’t know about you, but I’ve always had a problem with the brand onion, aka brand wheel, brand key, brand house.

Good to know

How to buy design services

Now, before I start, I want to make it clear. This isn’t a rant. I’m not using this piece to have a go at clients, the system, or any third party who has ever sought to influence how and where work is placed.

Good to know, Brand Creation & Evolution

Equity in lieu of fee — what I’ve learnt

Why part owning a brand gives you a unique perspective on your own firm.

Brand Strategy, The SimpleTruth

The ‘Simple Truth’ of Leave

More often than not, politics nets down to branding and communication. It's just that politicians don't always see it that way.

Good to know

Understanding the value of Experience

Today I got one of those strange moments of clarity and understanding. I was chatting with a colleague about how she’s fitting into the company.

Brand Strategy, Brand Architecture

Defining your Brand Architecture

The new sub brand launch is due next quarter and you’ve run out of names, colours and icons. If only there was a simpler way...

Brand Creation & Evolution

What’s the difference between a Logo and a Brand?

The Tokyo Olympics identity system has re-raised the age old question. What is a logo and what is a brand?

Brand Insight, Trends & Innovation

Why Luxury Branding Should Just Be Branding

It’s funny the way certain themes and strands emerge in the marketing world.

Brand Naming

There’s No ‘i’ In Apple

Since the big reveal of the Apple Watch, there has been some speculation on why the long-anticipated product ditched Apple famous ‘i’ prefix.

Market Research, Trends & Innovation

Consumers Don’t Care

I’m amazed at how we can complicate this industry so much that we actually forget what’s right in front of us.

Brand Strategy, Brand Creation & Evolution

How To Get The Best Out of a Rebranding Job

In our 10 years we’ve done quite a few of these jobs and we’ve learned a fair bit about what happens and what matters when you're doing them.

Good to know, Trends & Innovation

How Effective Are We?

We recently won another couple of Design Effectiveness Awards, which takes our tally of DEAs to ten since 2009. Six golds, three silvers and one bronze.

Good to know

A Good Place To Work

Nord secure the Andrew Doolan Best Building In Scotland prize for South Block - home of Good.