1) PROJECT SUMMARY
Durapower Holdings Pte. Ltd. (Durapower) underwent a comprehensive brand transformation exercise with branding consultancy, Firefish. Durapower saw the need to reposition its brand to become the premier energy storage partner in the clean energy sector with a mid to long-term goal of an Initial Public Offering (IPO). As a consequence, Durapower needed to transform their entire brand in order to become the top-of-the-mind brand for the entire energy storage vertical.
The branding process entailed three phases: Brand Audit, Brand Strategy and Brand Activation. Our stakeholders from all levels participated in the entire branding process. This included management, engineers and sales personnel in Suzhou and Singapore.
The branding exercise addressed these key issues:
- Existing corporate brand lacked an articulated brand strategy as well as a brand positioning resulting in lack of brand awareness within the energy storage sector.
- Existing brand messages did not adequately convey brand positioning or competitive advantages.
- Existing digital strategy lacked a robust pipeline management that leverages digital channels and platforms while integrating with sales and research teams.
These challenges were addressed and as a result the Durapower refreshed its branding to resonate in tandem with the re-imagined brand strategy. This included a clear brand positioning that is able to convey brand messages consistently as a thought leader in the energy storage vertical. In addition, the corporate brand was expanded into a scalable brand architecture in accordance with the product roadmap. A digital marketing strategy was also conceived as a digital-first, mobile-ready platform which leverages on both offline and online channels to create a integrated sales pipeline system. In summary, the new Durapower brand aligns the interests of both internal stakeholders from Suzhou and Singapore, establishing a holistic brand which is global and visionary in outlook
2) BRANDING PROCESS
Durapower undertook an extensive branding exercise with branding consultancy, Firefish from May 2019 to June 2020, spanning a total of thirteen months. The branding exercise was carried out in three core phases: Brand Audit, Brand Strategy and Brand Activation. The research findings, analysis and recommendations are separated in three distinct sections: Brand Audit, Brand Strategy and Brand Manual.
The Brand Audit phase consisted of the following: selection of research tools, design of research studies, conduct of the primary and secondary research, consolidation of information into Brand Audit Report and the presentation of the report to the management.
For primary research, in-depth interviews were conducted with the management on an individual basis. Additionally, there were focus groups which involved directors, line managers, factory supervisors, production workers, R&D team and project engineers. These tools were used as formative research to shed light on issues and challenges. Topics explored include brand associations, competitive analysis and evaluation of systems and processes. In addition, an environmental scanning was conducted at the Suzhou factory to shed light on brand touchpoints from a factory worker’s perspective.
Secondary research included a competitive analysis of other lithium-ion battery manufacturers such as MGL and Microvast which were mentioned in the focus groups. In addition, a case study of CATL was highlighted to shed light on best practices from the perspective of a high-growth segment leader. A SWOT-PEST analysis was provisioned to provide insights based on internal factors in terms of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats vis-à-vis external macro factors in terms of political, economy, social-cultural and technological.
A comprehensive creative audit was undertaken to assess whether the corporate collaterals and marketing materials aligned with the existing brand across the various channels, platforms and media. This was augmented with digital audit on the corporate website as well as search engines, social media platforms and forums.
At the Brand Strategy phase, further consultation sessions were conducted with the management in reference to the Brand Audit Report. Subsequently, the brand with its respective branding strategy were refined and defined. This phase culminated with the Brand Strategy document.
Finally, at the Brand Activation stage, the Brand Manual was developed to serve as a comprehensive application guide for the refreshed Durapower brand. In order to introduce and reinforce the new branding to all our stakeholders, a data repository was created for easy access and retrieval.
3) PROJECT OUTCOMES
As a result of the brand transformation exercise, Durapower managed to do the following:
- understand their existing internal brand culture with its strengths and weaknesses
- reposition their brand as a leading innovator in the renewable energy sector
- introduce a digital component into their brand strategy
- activate their brand into their factory environs.