“My best advice for shaping your brand’s identity (whether you have a start-up, nonprofit, or artistic project) is to treat it with respect and invest in its development.”
Name: Brad Kachelhofer
Occupation: Co-Owner/Principal of The Modern Brand Company
Creative Industry: Design
1. What is your role at The Modern Brand?
I’m responsible for creating content and managing projects from brainstorming to copywriting to production. A typical day can include meeting with clients, estimating jobs, stocking the fridge, stuffing envelopes, and making sure our team has everything it needs to be productive.
2. What is your process when approached by new clients or a new design challenge?
Whether we’re working on new projects or revisiting an established piece for a long-term client, the first step in our process is to identify and often narrow down goals for brand development. We love challenging projects and learning new things. We love to work with our clients to create new ideas and experiences.
We’re particularly proud of our work with Create Birmingham. Their new website is not only a design triumph, but it’s also full of valuable resources for our community.
3. How has The Modern Brand grown since its inception?
We’re celebrating our 8th birthday this week. Our team is now twice as big, and my partner, Michael Bell, and I are enjoying the new energy and new ideas they’re bringing. Plus, we just moved into a new office which we’ll be showing off during Design Week’s Agency Open House. (Monday, October 19, 5:00 – 7:00 pm)
4. What advice do you have for entrepreneurs looking to shape an identity for their brand?
My best advice for shaping your brand’s identity (whether you have a start-up, nonprofit, or artistic project) is to treat it with respect and invest in its development. It may seem like you’re saving money doing everything yourself or accepting design “help” from your neighbor’s nephew’s roommate. But your logo and style speak for your brand when you’re not there to explain it. It’s not just a matter of taste. Poorly executed or inconsistent design will affect your brand position, making you look like something you’re not. I don’t think I’m the only consumer who chooses not to buy products that have Papyrus logos.
Also, never expect an agency or designer (or really anyone) to work for the “exposure.” Treat other professionals, no matter how fresh out of school, as you would like to be treated.
5. Your offices are in downtown Birmingham; how have you seen downtown grow over the last few years?
Downtown is finally becoming more dense and more lively. There are still quite a few empty buildings, but it’s exciting to see new businesses and residences open up. I hope that downtown development continues to evolve thoughtfully and with affordability and diversity in mind. Economic opportunities should be available to everyone.