4 Simple Rules to Help You Establish a Recognizable Brand Identity

Starting a new business is a lot of work. No matter the type or size of your business, spending time on establishing your brand identity is crucial. Your brand identity includes, but is not limited to, the colours and logo that you use to represent your business. It may seem simple, but your logo is usually the first way consumers will recognize your brand. If you want to have a strong corporate image, you need to have a solid brand identity behind it.Consistency is key when establishing a brand identity – everything you produce: your services, products, reports, publications, etc. will be reflective of your brand identity. This is what will make you recognizable to potential customers. So how do you get started on building your brand’s identity? There are a few rules you can follow to help you establish a unique brand that will help you stand out from the crowd.Rule 1: Colour does matterAccording to “Impact of Colour in Marketing” (2006), up to 90% of snap judgements made about products can be based on colour alone. This doesn’t mean you should find the most commonly liked colour (it’s blue) and create your brand identity using that colour. It means that it’s important to take the time to research your colour options and ensure you select one that best represents your business.In the past, we have assumed that colours are associated with certain objects and feelings. Yellow is commonly associated with happiness, or the sun. Red is often associated with love, anger, and fire. However, recent studies have found that these associations are not really based in fact. This is because people form their own associations with colour based on personal experiences, so the generalizations we usually assume about colour are not applicable to everyone.This does not mean that colour isn’t important to your brand! “The Interactive Effects of Colours” (2006) showed that the relationship between brands and colour doesn’t depend on how the colour makes the consumer feel, but rather on the perceived appropriateness of the colour being used by the particular brand.If the consumer feels that the colours you choose doesn’t match the brand or product you are trying to sell, they are more likely to make a snap judgment and choose not to buy your product.Rule 2: Pay attention to your audienceWhen you’re thinking about which colour(s) best represent your brand, it is important to pay attention to your environment. This includes cultural perceptions and differences in gender.For example, studies have shown that blue is the most-liked colour across males and females, and purple is the least popular colour among men. However, the results may differ in countries on the other side of the world. If you are planning on having an international brand, your research must include cultural differences in colour perception to avoid negatively influencing a consumer’s choice in another country.There are also differences in colour preferences between males and females. Men tend to prefer bold colours and shades, which is colour with black added to it. Women tend to move towards softer colours and tints, which is colour with white added.Full infographic at KissmetricsIf you are an international business or selling a product geared primarily to one gender, I recommend reading the cited research studies in more detail:The interactive effects of colors and products on perceptions of brand logo appropriateness
Impact of color on marketingRule 3: Find a colour that represents your brand personalityOnce you’ve established who you are targeting, you can start thinking about what colour would best represent your brand’s personality.Start by really thinking about your brand. How do you want people to see you? What do you want people to associate your brand with? For a brand like Apple, they want you to think of sleek, well-designed technology. Their brand consists of a clean, silver logo in the shape of an apple. The colour of the apple complements the colour of their products: silver, white, and black. Despite not having the name of the business in their logo, they have been successful in creating a brand recognizable around the world.You may have a completely different brand personality than Apple, and that’s okay. Unlike Apple, Ebay’s logo relies only on the name of the business instead of an image. They selected four primary colours used on all of their branding materials to make their name memorable. While Apple’s brand reflects sleek technology, Ebay’s colour choices are more fun and diverse, representing the wide range of products you can buy from their online store.If you are just starting your business, you should already be focused on how you want consumers to perceive you. Narrow this down to a few words, and then do some research about colours that people commonly associate with these words. One way to conduct a survey with a sample of potential consumers. Ask them if they associate these words with any particular colour, and see if you come up with any commonalities.Once you have established your brand personality, it will be easier to think of colours that will match that personality.And finally…Rule 4: Stand out from your competitorsStudies have found that our brains prefer recognizable brands over new brands, and as a new business it is important that your brand is instantly recognizable. To do this, you must stand out from your competitors. If your competitor uses blue in their brand, don’t use blue in your brand at all. Choosing an opposite or at least different colour from your competitor will instantly set you apart, which is crucial when you are entering a market that already has established competitors.Following these rules, you should be able to establish a strong and recognizable brand identity, and you’ll have a stronger overall business strategy as a result.

Driving Healthcare Innovation Through Medical Device Design

The Regulatory Environment
As the industry continues to innovate and leverage new technologies, it is also plagued by a stringent and always changing regulatory environment. Healthcare institutions are always looking for ways to improve clinical trials of medical devices, and incorporate breakthrough technologies to meet the growing demands of patients, healthcare practitioners while at the same time meeting device guidelines and regulations. In addition, the increase in mobility, connectivity and portability of monitoring devices, medical device manufacturers are seeking to build cost-effective and cutting edge connected services.

Embracing IT Solutions
Healthcare policy reforms and technological advances have converged to drive demand for new and innovative medical devices for hospitals, healthcare institutions, laboratories and governments. However, with growth come significant challenges (and opportunities) – as guidelines and mandates are constantly evolving and changing the way medical devices are launched, IT solutions can help.

• Efficiently manage compliance issues, as well as customer service and complaint issues
• Improve product development and manufacturing processes across key operational functions and meet the demands of an increasingly stringent regulatory environment
• Minimize cost of product development and research while simultaneously improving time to market
• Enable superior research and development activities and ensure richer device (and healthcare) outcomes
• And overcome challenges across clinical development and production, using cutting-edge compliance management tactics, sales and marketing analytics and field service

Smart Engineering for Improved Healthcare Outcomes
Smart Engineering is the latest wave of engineering processes that’s enabling manufacturers to drive innovation in the product development space:
• With smart engineering, manufacturers can easily and quickly validate error-prone functionality early in the product development
• With such validation, manufacturers can significantly reduce costs and accelerate time-to-market
• Automation of tasks can result in massive productivity gains, and proactive risk mitigation can help ensure safe and reliable products
• Smart engineering enables robustness of product design that delivers high quality to patients and health care providers at affordable prices
• Smart data collection through the design stages leads to predictable outcomes in manufacturing
• Manufacturers can verify changes much before they are implemented, and build safer products with predictable outcome
• Smart engineering incorporates model-based development, with embedded hardware and firmware design, integration and test automation
• Using medical grade communication technologies and protocols, device manufacturers can build a connected ecosystem
• Application development and maintenance medical device design services help in building Electronic Medical Records as well as Personal Health Records(PHR)
• Infrastructure management services enable manufacturers to host solutions on the cloud and leverage the benefits of remote management
• And finally, quality assurance and regulatory services ensure accurate product validation, certification and submission for improved health management

How to Get More Referrals From Hospitals, SNF, and Physicians

HHAs cannot survive without a steady flow of patient referrals, especially in areas where there is an abundance of HHAs competing for the same few patient population.

Why is it now harder to get referrals from hospital or SNF discharge planners?

There are several good reasons why it’s harder to get referrals from discharge planners:

1. Discharge planners are bombarded by home health sales reps on a daily basis as competition for patients increases. There has been a 75% increase in the number of agencies across the US. Can you see why discharge planners from hospitals and SNFs are overwhelmed? Many hospitals have new policies prohibiting home health sales reps from calling or dropping in on their discharge planners because it’s takes up too much of their time.

2. With the explosion of home health agencies, and the rules about patient choice and freedom of choice, it is more difficult for discharge planners to make referrals to certain agencies all the time. This is especially true when most agencies have the same wording in their brochures. Nothing makes them stand out from the crowd. Nothing says why the patient should choose your agency over another agency.

3. Discharge Planner/ Case Managers (DP/CM) are under tremendous pressure to get patients out of hospitals quicker, so this makes it harder for discharge planners/case managers to discharge patients from the hospital to competent home health or home care services. The pressure makes it hard for CM/DP to interact with home health sales reps.

Solution: What is a more effective way to get more referrals from Physicians, hospitals, and Skilled Nursing Facilities?

Based on the above information, and just plain knowledge on how the system works. It just makes good sense for home health agencies and personal care agencies to start specializing in providing specific types of care, or target a certain group of patients rather than saying that “everyone” is your targeted market. The truth is that not everyone is your targeted market with so much competition out there looking for the patients. Now is the opportunity for home health and personal care agencies to generate referrals that turn into admissions by telling DP/CM, physicians, and SNF what makes you special. What problem of theirs can you solve?

Your Sales Rep. should be able to tell hospitals, SNF, physicians or their office staffs how you can solve the 30 Day Re- Admission issues that Medicare penalizes them for. If you focus on this 30-day Re-Admission problem that plagues every hospital in the country, then your agency will soar to higher success. Training staff will be the first step you take to guarantee the success of this plan. Your sales rep must be very knowledgeable about what your agency can and cannot do. There’s nothing worse than having a sales rep promising hospitals, and doctors that you can provide services that your agency is not qualified to do. If your agency cannot provide anything more than simple wound care because your nurses are not trained on wound care, then don’t take patients with major wound care needs. You would think this would be common sense, but believe me as a consultant, I have seen many agencies get into trouble by taking patient case loads they are not qualified for, or have enough nurses to provide the care.