Small-business branding experts with big-time know how.

Here’s who we are:

John Furgurson – Owner, creative director, brand strategist.

John’s been called an anomaly… A creative guy with a penchant for business. A poetic entrepreneur.

He can devise an insightful strategy in the morning and craft award-winning ad copy over lunch. It’s a left-brain, right-brain, one-two punch that fits perfectly with the needs of his small business clients.

John cut his teeth writing direct response ads — where sales were the only litmus test of success. From there, he worked for several Portland-area ad agencies on a vast array of print and radio campaigns.

John also did a stint in the video industry where he wrote scripts and helped produce long-format videos and direct-response TV for big brands such as HP, Tektronix and WearEver.

Eventually, John moved to Bend, Oregon to raise his kids and strike that delicate balance between work and play. His first branding agency was named AdWords, which worked out well until Google decided they really, really, really had to have that URL. 

Learn more about John’s origin story and his rebranding effort. John shares his expertise regularly on the Brand Insight Blog, which he’s been writing since 2007

Get to know him on the podcast of “Bootstraps & Business. Find John Furgurson on LinkedIn

John Furgurson branding expert
small-business branding experts
Mattie Limon

Accounts and Business Manager

Every branding agency needs someone like Mattie — like an orchestra needs a conductor.

Mattie is the master of social media, project management and finance.  Under Mattie’s watchful eye our operation sings along in relative harmony… Our creative teams can operate way more effectively and our clients aren’t ambushed with surprises.

Mattie’s very handy in the kitchen, and with a camera, which works out well for our food industry clients. Her good-natured approach keeps everyone on task, including freelancers, vendors and, yes, even the CEO. It’s a win-win.

Connect with Mattie on LinkedIn

Matt Montagne

Sr. Art Director

Matt believes that subtle, aesthetic considerations have a pronounced affect not only on your brand image, but also your sales. 

Matt’s quiet, thoughtful approach to design translates brand strategies into gorgeous, relevant work. His talents extend far beyond brand identity design into packaging, print, video, web design, signage and advertising.

Matt was the lead designer for Nike Golf and helped grow 10 Barrel Brewing before it was sold to the world’s largest brewing company.

He sweats every detail. From the psychological effects of a color change to the usability implications of a specific website font, he works with the precision and care of a true craftsman and artist.

small-business branding experts - BN Branding
Erik Zetterberg

Web Developer

Erik’s our webmaster/ programmer/ technology consultant. Here’s how it usually goes with Erik…

We approach him with our initial concepts for a website. He tells us it can’t be done. No way. Then we go back and forth arguing the merits of the big idea vs. the realities of modern web dev. (We’ll spare you the details on that.)

Eventually Erik goes deep down some technological rabbit hole, and we don’t hear from him until he emerges with a workable solution. Every time.

The results are stunning… Websites that look as good as they perform. So you get higher conversion rates and analytics that your CFO will love. It’s better with Zetter. Berg.

Here’s what we do:

Brand Strategy

First we uncover the DNA of your brand. Then we develop a category-busting brand strategy that drives everything. It’s a disciplined, words-first branding process designed specifically for small businesses.

 Dazzling Creative Execution

Once the the strategy is mapped out you need a creative agency to execute it in exciting new ways. You’ll get effective, award-winning content for all your marketing tactics… Check out our Portfolio.

Well-oiled Marketing

We’ll help you navigate the complex landscape of modern marketing by prioritizing tactics, aligning them with a clear-cut strategy and then executing efficiently for measurable results.

Here’s what we believe:

There’s no reason why small businesses cannot think like big brands. That’s what we do… we bring big-brand thinking to small companies and start ups. And we prefer companies that are built on a solid belief system of honest ideals and authentic values that line up with our own…

We believe that Branding is not a marketing function. It’s bigger than that.

Branding is bigger than design. Bigger than advertising. Even bigger than sales and marketing. Branding begins on the inside, with a customer-centric culture, and it touches every phase of your operation.

We believe ideas, names and words come first. Before art.

BN Branding is the only words-first branding agency. While everyone else starts with art, we focus on getting the words right. That’s the foundation of every great brand strategy… First, strategic clarity. Then we distill the big idea down to a few poignant words that inspire great design.

 We believe creativity is the ultimate small-business weapon.

Inspired, creative thinking is behind every great brand, from Apple to Zappos. But we also believe that it’s hard to be creative when you’re up to your neck in day-to-day operations. Most small-business owners need a creative spark from an outside source. Like BN Branding.

 We believe strategy is a creative exercise.

Strategy drives the execution that produces results. If you have a me-too strategy, no amount of creative trickeration is going to produce the outcome you’re looking for. Creative strategy plus creative execution is a formidable combination — and very few branding agencies can provide both in a small-business environment.

 We believe that process matters – in branding agencies and in business.

Branding is a service business, so how we work is often just as important as what we produce. For us, it’s insight first, then execution. Every time. It’s a branding process designed specifically to produce maximum results with minimal headaches.

 We believe every small-business needs a seasoned marketing generalist.

Specialists are tactical. Short term. Generalists are long-term strategic thinkers. We help you navigate the entire marketing landscape and so you can maximize every marketing tactic. Something you’ll never get from a digital ad agency or a marketing consultant or a design firm.

 We believe that a branding agency should start with customer-driven concepts. Not art.

Most branding agencies are entirely focused on branded art and graphics. But you can’t have killer creative without killer clarity. So we uncover strategic, customer-focused insights that ignite the flames of great execution. Then we take that ball and run with it. So you don’t end up with pretty stuff that doesn’t produce.

 We believe in the persuasive power of disruptive words.

Fact: The human brain automatically screens out the normal, mundane language of most business pitches. It’s in one ear, and out the other. Creative, well-crafted messages, on the other hand, fire the synapses and trigger an emotional response. So we’re the world’s only Words-First branding agency.  Here’s an example of great messaging from our bend ad agency.

 We believe that emotion trumps logic every time.

Research it yourself… the latest findings in Neuroscience prove that people make emotional purchases, then use logic to justify the decision. Gut first, then head. No great brand has ever been built on reason alone. Not one. In branding, it’s what they feel, not what they think.

 We believe the marketing mix is more important than ever.

The marketing landscape is evolving quickly. Social media provides exciting new ways to tell stories and make connections, but you still need a healthy mix of marketing tactics. Some high tech, some high touch. Some old school, some new school. Some brand building and some sales activation.

We believe in the selling power of a good story.

Every great business has an engaging story to tell. And the best leaders leverage that. So tell it! Hire a strategic branding agency to help clarify the story and come up with creative new ways to spin that tale in ads, on your website, in presentations, tweets and Facebook posts.

 As small-business branding experts, we believe in skeptical optimism.

As creative thinkers we’re naturally skeptical, but not pessimistic. We question the status quo in order to move your business up to the next level. Tell us that something can’t be done, that it’s too hard or too “out there,” and we’ll be positively skeptical about that.

 We believe Design belongs in business school.

Tom Peters calls it “the soul of new enterprise.”  It’s Design that differentiates the world’s most valuable brand – Apple.  It’s Design that made Nest a billion dollar brand. Design evokes passion, emotion and attachment… exactly what’s needed to turn small businesses into iconic brands.

 We believe in the art of persuasion.

Data is a big deal these days. But effective branding still comes down to saying the right thing, and saying it well. That’s what small business branding experts can bring to the table… A brilliantly crafted combination of words and images that can move the needle. Here’s a relevant case study.

Here’s where we choose to work:

Yep, it’s a Bend, Oregon branding agency, but we serve clients all over the country.

They come from Florida, California, Toronto and even Costa Rica. The fresh air, the beauty and the outdoor action in Bend is a mecca for creativity. It’s the juice that keeps the ideas — and the clients — coming.

Won’t you join us? We can arrange a rejuvenating, brand-building business trip that will inspire you – and tire you.

Bend Oregon branding company

Take your next agency for a spin.

You wouldn’t buy a BMW without getting behind the wheel. You have no idea what it can do. Same with BN Branding. So let’s go for a test drive… just one small assignment to prove how well we handle whatever you throw at us.

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