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Cracking the Code: How Understanding Core Values Can Unlock Project Potential

Updated: May 6, 2023

Coffee and Core Value examples
Some core value examples: Sustainability, Accessibility, Reliability, Innovation

Why do you need to know your clients’ core values before starting a new project?

Articulating the core values of your client’s brand can help them attract, retain and thrive with the clients who truly resonate and align with their brand’s innermost beliefs. To achieve this, here are some important steps to follow:

• Start by asking, “what does your brand stand for?” The first step when engaging with any project is to help the client understand what their guiding principles are.

• Make sure your client understands their audience The second step is to understand the customer – this will inform how the brand fills a need (or want).

• Amplify their values to deepen their connections with customers The final step is to help companies keep their brand values front and center in all of their marketing initiatives.

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Organization and strategy are key to the rising success of a business

While clients often view the work to define their core values as secondary to their needs, articulating these values often sets the foundation for any brand or design-related services thereafter. Most clients already operate within their core values, they just need help fine-tuning and expressing them. Once put to paper, your clients can then showcase their best work as a testament to their faith in these values, something that’s sure to instill trust and appreciation among their own clients.

By following these steps, you can distill your clients’ beliefs into a set of core values they can put into practice to captivate customers. There are some specific ways that agencies can help clients identify and incorporate these values into a given project, including conducting workshops, interviews, and focus groups. Prioritizing the top values into a hierarchy of most important to least important is also essential. Once articulated, help your client uphold these values by integrating them into their creative processes and referring back to them often.

Incorporating trusted influencers into a client's marketing and promotional campaigns or helping them create brand experiences that are memorable and unique can also help amplify their values and deepen their connections with customers. A strong focus on core values improves project performance by honing in on your brand’s unique perspective and outcomes that offer measurable benefits to your client, including increased brand trust, more sales, customer loyalty, and improved brand equity. It also increases your own value—and differentiation—as an agency, and can lead to more successful, long-term relationships with your clients.

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