branding + messaging

Brand Strategy
Message Development / Framing
Visual Identity

It’s not what you say, it’s what people hear.
— Frank Lutz, public-opinion pollster

Brand: "a person's perception of a product, person, experience or organization."
(The Dictionary of Brand)

Note the key word in that definition: perception. People form their perceptions from any number of contacts with you: your product/service, your website, an article, brochure, event, blog post, email, Facebook, viral video, your logo or tagline.

Your brand is your greatest asset. It’s more than your logo and name. It’s your story. The truest expression of your purpose.

There are many ways you could tell that story. Successful brands speak with a cohesive, singular voice.

Some brands are clever but have no meaning, no resonance, no resilience. Some brands have essence but are forgettable.

We can help discover your essence and design a solid brand strategy that will drive and unite all communications so they have maximum impact. Our process involves deep insights into your brand revolving around a holistic model we call "Brandidote: 7 Dimensions of High-Impact Branding."

A high-impact brand is relevant, credible, memorable and sustainable.

We'll guide you in the development of your overall narrative, the stories that support it, and the voice you tell them in. These give a solid foundation for all of your communications, PR, marketing and fundraising efforts, your materials, social media... everything.

We'll address these questions:

  • Who are you?
  • What do you do?
  • Why does it matter?
  • Who do you serve? Your key target audiences?
  • What is your promise to funders, clients, volunteers, partners and the community?
  • Does your name, visual identity (logo) and messages accurately convey all of this?

Ultimately, a high-impact brand articulates your stories to the folks who matter in a way that resonates with them, engages them, and inspires them to action.


Messaging tells the brand story to external audiences. It crystallizes and communicates your essence and vision, describing what you do and how you do it in a clear, strong voice. Messages must be relevant and consistently infused throughout all communications. They not only reinforce your brand but are crucial to the success of any campaign, whether targeting the media, grassroots or influencers.

Naming is the origin of all particular things.
— Tao Te Ching


Be it of your organization, a product/service or a program, a good name captures the essence of your brand promise through linguistic association. It can help create a stronger connection between target audience values and your organization's values. We develop names that are distinctive, relevant, memorable and sustainable.

Contact us and let's discuss how we can best help.

Antidotes in Action

ReThink Health / Rippel Foundation

This collaborative of leaders, thinkers and doers convened by the health care-focused Rippel Foundation had a newly defined mission that "differed significantly from other efforts" and included an ambitious, transformational scope. Their ultimate vision was to "shift the paradigm in America from a focus on care to a focus on health.”

Besides being a new initiative, one of their key challenges was that the individuals of the group had their own identities and brought their own approaches and agendas. They needed to coalesce around a unity of purpose.

We conducted a fairly immersive discovery process to clarify their mission and approach and uncover their essence. We designed a brand strategy that uniquely positioned them and established an identity of the group while acknowledging the renown of the core members. We used that as a foundation for the collaborative's name: ReThink Health. Perhaps most importantly, we helped craft a common language for the members to convey the group's story and ambitious vision to the outside world.

The group’s mission and approach have evolved since it was formed — and its messaging with it — but the essence of the brand has remained.