The Core of Purpose-Based Branding




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Jeff Bezos famously said, “Your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room.” You can’t just buy a great brand. It is a way to turn every client into your biggest fan. It’s about creating a community everyone wants to be a part of and root for. And that’s how Nickelbronx builds great brands.

Founded in 2021, Borzou Azabdaftari (CEO and Founder) and Amanda Fischer (CMO and Founder) understand that the link between brand and culture is so very crucial to building great brands that even before they sketch a logo, they want to get to know your team and your values as a basis for finding your edge.

COVID-19 was the catalyst for Nickelbronx. Despite over 20 years at his previous venture, Falcon Labs – a print and promotional products company – Borzou’s most significant lessons came at the start of the lockdowns. “The pandemic exposed a lot of problems in the business. We tried to add many creative services and build an agency on the back of it. It turned out that what we were doing wasn’t making sense to anyone,” he shares. “People associated us with the last thing we did for them; if we sold them a hat, we were your hat guys; if we sold you a logo, we were your logo guys. One guy even thought I was an IT firm because I helped him with an e-mail problem. I realized there was a lot of brand confusion in more ways than one.”

For Borzou, it led to him understanding how important controlling that narrative and strategy was and how much value there was in getting that right, talking to customers, and doing it the right way. He realized people didn’t actually want to focus on KPIs or technical jargon in digital marketing. “People come to you because they want to be different; they want to be cool; they want to stand out from the marketplace,” he says. “I love making things cool. I love making things different. I was more in line with what people were bringing to me, my passion, and what I’m good at. That became the business’s main mission.” This shift in strategy emphasizes purpose-based branding and authenticity.

Nickelbronx’s approach is deeply rooted in understanding and positioning a client’s unique value. “We do purpose-based branding,” he states. “We don’t make something up for you that we think the market wants. We talk to your team, customers, and stakeholders to figure out what people want you for now. We look at all your competitors to see how they’re positioning themselves, and between those two things, we carve out a unique position to help customers want to choose you,” he explains.

For Nickelbronx, brand consistency is much more than a logo. “It’s the messaging, positioning, and even how your Instagram vibes with your website,” Borzou points out. He believes a lack of coherence between these elements can subconsciously impact customer trust, even if not immediately apparent. According to him, a large part of customer persuasion—around 70%—happens before they even enter the sales process, thanks to a robust and consistent brand image.

Nickelbronx prioritizes crafting purpose-based brand marketing strategies that underscore this sense of consistency and ensure the entire branding process aligns with the core identity of each client.

Underlining the importance of authenticity, Borzou remarks: “Not everyone can be cool, and that’s okay. It’s about finding what genuinely works for your brand.” This philosophy guides Nickelbronx’s approach to each project, whether making something ‘cool’ or focusing on practical effectiveness, like a payroll company’s website that doesn’t need to be flashy but must convincingly showcase its capability

Nickelbronx’s website is a testament to Borzou’s approach to authenticity and purposed-based digital marketing. It breaks down the five pillars of how they build great brands: Grow; Give a Fck; Be Real; and, Make Cool Sht.

There’s a meticulously refined process to building great brands. At Nickelbronx, it starts with Discovery (getting to know your current brand, market, customers, and audience), then Strategy (defining a brand’s purpose, positioning, communication pillars, and brand values), to Identity (it’s more than just a logo, it’s crafting a visual representation of a brand’s purpose, personality, and values), to Development (this is about tailoring brand execution and key marketing efforts), and finally onto Rollout (the activation of all branding efforts).

The nitty gritty services range from visual identity, web design, video editing, animation, and marketing strategy to SEO, demand generation, and social media management.

Nickelbronx is a creative agency that delivers on the intersection of speed, quality, creativity, and consistency. From strategic campaigns to tactical deliverables, they haven’t met a job they can’t crush. Their edge and grit are what set them apart from other traditional agencies.

“Not everyone can be cool, and that’s okay. It’s about finding what genuinely works for your brand.”

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