About Brand Fuel:
Brand Fuel was founded in 1998 by two friends, Robert Fiveash and Danny Rosin. Bold, real, and inspiring from the very start, Brand Fuel develops brand strategies that tap into your audience’s desire for something different.
As a Certified B Corp, Brand Fuel is a free-spirited, globally-recognized brand merchandising agency with a focus on creating meaningful connections and sustainability.
Brand Fuel is on a mission to help you avoid “brandfill”: uninvited and expendable branded swag. Organizations that spend years on their identity spend seconds on the giveaways it’s printed on. They’re buying stuff bound for landfills.
That’s why Brand Fuel promises to put strategy first, and product second. They recommend products that are responsibly sourced and will be treasured, not trashed.
Brand Fuel approached Noel & Co. during a time of strategic transition.
They were looking towards their next phase of growth and trying to figure out the best path to sustainable growth that was good for both their people and the planet.
Brand Fuel wanted to reposition its brand to fully embrace its commitment to using its business as a force for good. By becoming a Certified B Corporation (B Corp), they officially became part of the movement of brands committed to accountability, transparency, and continuous improvement.
Given our founder, Christina’s, breadth of B Corp expertise and experience, they were excited to have Noel & Co.’s guidance on how to tell their brand story in a compelling, meaningful way.
In addition to this, Brand Fuel wanted to “do well while also doing good,” so they were seeking a marketing partner to drive sustainable growth.
One of their most promising services is “phygital” marketing, a strategy that ties physical branded merch to a digital destination. By seamlessly integrating tangible products into a digital experience, you get more bang for your buck and maximize ROE (return on engagement).
This approach has gained significant traction, especially as a part of Brand Fuel’s custom kitting services. The recent shift to remote work made sending merch kits to audiences a valuable way to foster connections — and we can thank the Kardashians for the popularity of custom kits!
Brand Fuel wondered: Could their Phygital services help them capture part of the $800 billion digital marketing industry?
Given these circumstances, Brand Fuel was a perfect candidate for developing and implementing a Go-to-Market Strategy!
To kickstart the process, we took two key steps:
- We served as fractional marketing leadership in a brand repositioning project in collaboration with New Kind, a local Certified B Corp specializing in brand strategy for B2B tech companies. Together, we worked on evolving Brand Fuel’s messaging, brand design, and positioning to effectively communicate its value proposition, and mission, and accelerate growth.
- We also conducted market research to ensure we developed an informed marketing strategy. This research would inform Brand Fuel’s incorporation of its mission into its overall branding and guide the implementation of its updated messaging and branding across all of its key marketing collateral.
We interviewed 8 digital marketing experts, including key Brand Fuel customers and stakeholders to gain insights on the value Brand Fuel has added to their own companies’ marketing campaigns.
We also interviewed 4 internal Brand Fuel team members to understand their perspectives on Brand Fuel’s strengths and growth opportunities.
Based on our market research, we were able to identify the ideal customers for Brand Fuel’s phygital services.
Our research will ensure that Brand Fuel can better focus its time and resources on the audiences that will see the most value from these services.
- We mapped out the various benefits of a phygital campaign, including…
- Engagement doesn’t end with the physical product
- Meaningful giveaways, resulting in less brandfill
- Higher ROE and ROI
- Proven eyes on your marketing content
- Valuable data collection
- Drive greater participation in market research
- Creative follow-ups to help close deals
- Unique thank-yous
- Deeper connection-building
We also trained the Brand Fuel team on our market research insights. Our training focused on:
- Helping them better understand how to communicate with their ideal customers
- Arming them with the resources to better describe the benefits of a phygital campaign
- Walking through the new marketing collateral we worked with Brand Fuel leadership to develop
- Building the case for why profitability and purpose can compliment each other vs. compete as Brand Fuel embraces its new B Corp status
Fun fact - we ended up doing a phygital campaign with another Noel & Co. client, Paradox Consulting Partners, to inspire more participation in a market research study at an event they sponsored AND to inspire people to subscribe to their newsletter. You can learn more about this campaign here.
Brand Fuel’s updated website and marketing materials embrace its commitment to responsibly sourced branded merch. They continue to further embody B Corp values in their marketing efforts by creating unique and sustainable branded merch for mission-driven clients.
We helped clarify Brand Fuel’s role as a strategic partner and the value they bring in nurturing more meaningful customer relationships within the middle and bottom of the marketing funnel. This is achieved through a combination of branded merch AND a digital marketing destination.
Our market research generated 47 warm leads for their phygital services and also gave the company greater insights into what customer personas are most interested in learning about responsibly sourced branded merch vs. which customer personas need to be more budget conscious.
Since working with Noel & Co., Brand Fuel now has the tools it needs to more effectively market its Phygital Marketing services, which gives clients a new tool to increase ROE and ROI through their employee and customer appreciation initiatives.
- Comprehensive market research (internal & external)
- Go-to-Market (GTM) Strategy
- Homepage design updates in partnership with New Kind, Parson Lane and Unity Web Agency
- Updated customer personas
- Evolved messaging
- 47 warm leads for Phygital Services
- Presentation to the Brand Fuel Sales team, sharing research insights and empowering them to effectively “speak their ideal customers’ language” moving forward
- Clear direction on cause marketing and strategies for further establishing industry leadership as a newly certified B Corp
To ensure Brand Fuel's marketing collateral reflected their updated branding, we also partnered closely with leadership to evolve their business development deck using an AI tool.