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Cost Clarity: A New Look at Smart Money

Posted by: Jeff Dawson on July 29, 2011

Have you ever been asked to explain why something costs so much? Were you ever curious about where all the money went during a project?
Well, now is your chance to find some answers to these questions. The Interbrand brand management systems team has developed a service that gives us the ability to approach clients with a specific eye on branding costs. This cost clarity model allows us to assess a client’s potential brand spend that needs to be set aside for budgeting purposes.

Common brand touchpoints such as signage, fleet, stationery — you name it — are now made easier to grasp and understand financially. Instead of made-up costs or inaccurate reads, we are able to fine tune and make clear the investment ahead. And this can happen with clients during the initial stages of our relationship with them. This is beneficial as clients want to know how much money is involved and why something cost what it does, whether it is a long-term project or short-term project.

Cost clarity brings to light financial implications very quickly
Our cost clarity model is based on a variety of simple client inputs. We start by asking some preliminary questions based on what a client is trying to solve for. We employ a few basic formulas around the collected data: for example, product quantities, employee populations, and even office locations. We then output some high level estimates. We can even further fine-tune these cost outputs if the client has more data to share. Long story short, the end results reveal the money needed to implement any number of chosen brand touchpoints. What we really like here, is that we’re don’t have to gather a plethora of research to understand a client’s situation. The financial implications become very clear, very fast.


Clients are always talking about being able to reach their brand audiences quickly, so having some foresight around what they’ll be spending money on is of huge value.

Cost clarity simplifies and adapts
Another great thing about this initiative is that we can get to an estimate on costs without having spent too much time getting into the nitty gritty details of a full rebrand program. Of even more value to us here is that we can work with any size client, from large to small, since the cost clarity framework is scalable.

Cost clarity helps brands prioritize

For new clients, this is a different way in to engage with Interbrand. It allows for small, directed conversations to happen without being overly intrusive. For existing clients, this is an opportunity to check in on what may have been done in the past and be able to course correct, based on new information. Unforeseen new business opportunities may arise based on the clarity provided to clients -- as it eliminates any confusion or vagueness. Clients are also aided by being able to prioritize what is most or least important to them based on their given budget.

During a time when it’s very much about being smart with your money and being careful where you spend, this cost clarity model can make a huge impact on your brand.




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