Building a brand with Andrew Murabito
At No Vacancy we love chatting to experts who don't have a background in travel and leisure. It creates a more rounded and diverse opinion, and can uncover some cracking little ideas along the way.
We recently sat down with Andrew Murabito, founder of We Art You, in his London studio to ask his perspective on hotel branding. We Art You have designed album covers for some of the biggest names in music – Kylie, Bat for Lashes, The Kooks, Uncle Jam – and produced work for an array of global music labels – Virgin, EMI, Parlophone, Sony Music, Universal and Mushroom Records.
I worked with Andrew back in London, close to 20 years ago at Jive Records, so it was great to chat design and ideas with him after so long.
How important is it for hoteliers to put a lot of investment into professional design and branding if they expect to stand out in a highly competitive industry?
Given that branding is the starting point in which to draw in your key audience I think it’s imperative that accommodation businesses invest in professional design especially a boutique hotel aimed at a certain clientele. Branding sets the tone and visual identity of a business and has the power to sway or deflect customers depending on the strength of the design.
How does the right design and branding play a key role in creating an atmosphere, building the right brand and in turn attracting more guests?
Hotel branding should be inviting and set the visual language for what to expect. Clever hotel branding should be a seamless integration to the aesthetic of the hotel interior and experience on offer, the right design and branding should speak to prospective clients with a narrative that’s akin to their lifestyles and tap into their consumers desires.
The right brand is more than just a logo. It’s about creating and delivering a story that’s unique to their business. Any tips on how they should get to this stage in their thinking?
The challenge is to reflect the design of the development and the experience the business offers. The branding should be tailored to the location, property type, decor and services provided. Your design and visual communications should also be aimed at the clientele the business is seeking.
Finally, any do’s and don’ts you’ve seen in your travels where hotels etc have delivered on or messed with their brand?
Ace Hotel seem to have got it right, they tick all the boxes when it comes to delivering a brand that’s totally in tune with their business model and customers of the establishments. Premier Inn is a complete eyesore and akin to the experience you might find with flying Ryan Air! Everything about the Premier Inn branding screams cheap and mass market from the logo and colours used to their online presence.
If you'd like to see more of Andrew's work check out the We Art You website.