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Tidy your Brand the Marie Kondo way

Now is the perfect time to review and assess your brand, and the Marie Kondo method that’s everywhere at the moment – or the KonMari method to give it its proper name – is an interesting lens through which to look at your brand, and whether it’s working for your business or not. We view it as a good opportunity to clear all the brand clutter that can accumulate over time.

The KonMari method is a system of simplifying and organising your home by getting rid of physical items that do not bring joy into your life. It was created by organizing consultant Marie Kondo and described in detail in her best-selling book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up  and now also on Netflix. KonMari teaches you to ask a simple question when you go about tidying up your house. Of each item in your home ask, does it spark joy? If not, get rid of it.

The appeal of Marie Kondo’s KonMari method is that it can be applied to all of parts of your life. We think the Marie Kondo method could help review and assess whether your brand sparks joy in you or your audience.

The Marie Kondo Method in 5 Simple Steps:

1. Tidy All at Once
2. Visualise the Destination
3. Determine if the Item “Sparks Joy”
4. Tidy by Category, not Location
5. Tidy In Order

1. Tidy All at Once

Dedicate the time and resources needed to do this brand review, and do it all in one go – drip feeding an hour a week on a project like a brand review, means that by Easter all energy and enthusiasm for it will be gone, and you won’t even have finished it yet! Make it a priority for you and your team – a concentrated effort in a short time always yields a better result than limping through weeks of one hour meetings.

2. Visualise the Destination

Before you start, have a clear objective. For example, a brand objective could be: “Our brand and all expressions of it should convey authenticity and trust. It should not be perceived as old fashioned, out of date or irrelevant.”
Having a clear idea of the end goal is helps everyone quickly get a sense of what criteria you will be judging it on. By thinking in such concrete terms, you can more accurately visualise the brand you wish to have.

3. Determine if the Item “Sparks Joy”

Remember everything says something – what does each item say to you? Is it aligned with the overall marketing strategy?
View each item of your brand expression together – print out every presentation template, letterhead, compliment slip, annual report etc and view the email signature, website, on desktop and mobile.

Go through each item one by one, considering whether it fulfils any of the following criteria:
– Does it spark joy?
– Does it speak to the heart of your brand?
– Do you love it?
– How does it move you?

Anything that ‘sparks joy’ is kept. Anything that does not is put to one side.

For the brand items that don’t spark joy – try to work out why they don’t work? Is it a simple layout or colour change, or does it need to be scrapped entirely?
Be ruthless. Don’t bring ‘rational thinking’ into it – imagine that budgets were limitless and you could do anything – what would you do with these items? If you have a template that you haven’t used in 6 months, for example, that’s telling you something about the relevance of it.

4. Tidy by Category, Not Location

After going through each category – digital, print, exhibition etc – work out what gaps you now have. If you were to tidy by location, you end up repeating the same work in many locations and could become locked into a vicious circle. Create a list of what needs to be tweaked, adjusted or redesigned entirely.

5. Tidy In Order

Assign budget and resources from the top down, and put a plan in place to address the items that need help – we suggest a hierarchy something similar to the below, but it’s totally up to your business needs:

1. Brand Messaging & Strategy
2. Everything Digital
3. Corporate Communications
4. Environmental/ Exhibitions
5. Promotional/ Marketing

If you would like help with tidying your brand or would like to hear more from us please get in touch.