Opinion Series

Opinion series: Rea Savva and Lex Brunette on brand marketing (Part 1)

September 14, 2021

The opinion series aims to share knowledge, provoke debate and stimulate conversation about relevant industry topics. The blogs reflect a range of perspectives from our team here at Pomelo Pay. We discuss the importance of brand and marketing with our in-house Head of Content and Brand, Rea Savva, and our resident Senior Visual Designer, Lex Brunette.

Hello Rea and Lex, welcome to the opinion series! We’re excited to have you on today to talk about all things brand related. 

What do you do at Pomelo UK? 

Lex: I am working on the visual brand for Pomelo UK and Asia, I am now implementing the brand into all the assets that will come out in any communications. Also, I work with the product team to make sure that the brand is reflected on the products.

Rea: I am the Head of Content and Brand. I am involved with the brand identity, the content creation, marketing campaigns and email campaigns, marketing materials, managing the online platforms and I work on the PR side of things too.

I work with several departments who are all very important in the marketing funnel including product, data, sales and design.

How did you get into the roles that you currently have? 

Lex: I like to think I have always been an artist. As a child I did ballet and studied to be a professional dancer for two years. I also liked illustrating and drawing since I was young so graphic design seemed to be the perfect combination.

I ended up studying communications and marketing, with an emphasis in media production. After eleven years working on all sides of communication design and marketing, I am an expert on visual branding

Rea: Growing up I was a very creative and curious child, and always full of ideas. I like to think outside of the box with things. I completed a degree in psychology because I have always been interested in what people are thinking and feeling. It’s combining this with my creative side that I enjoy most, which I can do with brand marketing.

For marketing campaigns I still incorporate psychology to speak to our audience. Brand awareness is the first step in a marketing funnel and it is very powerful. Through messaging and campaigns, you engage with your audience and create impact. It’s that emotional connection that I love to create.

What is the importance of having a brand?

Lex: Some would say that having a good product is the most important thing, and it's certainly necessary. However you can have the best product in the world and if no one knows about it then it won’t sell. Also, when people see a product, they need to remember it, to use it. 

It’s about having recognition and connecting with your customers, because that is what builds trust. You wouldn’t buy something from a website you have never heard of before. Then once you have that trust you need to have a clear message and demonstrate how you are different to your competitors. 

How does the marketing and design team work together?

Rea: Marketing and design work closely to communicate our brand from concept to execution. Whether it be a campaign or new product, it's important we're on the same page from ideation to delivering projects.

Whilst the marketing knuckles down on the research, content and main value propositions, the design team fuses this together through visual elements. We always have the same goals and guidelines so it's translated across our platform.

Does the marketing team work with any other teams?

Rea: All the time! When it comes to marketing campaigns, we have one important question - is it effective? To answer this question, we have a data team. They can crunch the numbers and give us the information we need to see if we have run a successful campaign.

We also work with the sales team too, so we can get insights into our users' needs and wants. This enables us to create content to capture our audience’s attention and create better customer experiences.

What’s your favourite part of the role/working together?

Lex: At Pomelo I am very pleased to have such a close relationship with marketing. I am not just told what I have to do, but brainstorm together with colleagues, so that I am part of the creative process from the beginning. I always get the opportunity to say what I’m thinking and suggest improvements. It's nice to be heard and recognised.

Rea: Working with the design team for me is really fun. I love the process. There’s good communication between us which is always key. Us marketeers love a good brainstorming session and I do like to get Lex involved quite early on so when I pass over the briefs to her, she can contribute her ideas. We are still a start up too, so it’s nice that everyone gets stuck into projects and takes ownership of their roles. 

What brands do you both admire?

Lex: I like Adidas and Chanel, they are both very different but have very strong personalities. As brands, they have both kept consistent throughout the years and still remain relevant with the latest trends.

Rea: There are so many good ones out there. I have four. Apple is a great brand, they’ve just nailed it. Everyone knows Apple, and every business wants to have that recognition. 

Nespresso is another favourite for me. They have transformed drinking coffee, which is a simple product, to a sophisticated brand with innovative experiences to engage customers. Everything is so seamless.

Dyson also uses innovation to solve everyday problems. Design wise they have kept cool and sleek, but still have great customer service.

Finally, Disney. They have been able to keep pace from the 1920s until now. It is so nice to see how they have developed over the years from hand drawn animation to computer generated animation.

The common denominator with them all, is that they put the customer at the heart of everything they do. It's why they work so beautifully as brands.

What is the best way to boost a brand's reputation?

Rea: I love a good campaign that gets people talking, especially tube ads and billboards. But you’ve got to find the balance between offline and online these days. The digital space is so important right now. Social media is very popular not only for advertising but to engage with audiences and respond to comments and reviews. 

Building partnerships, networking and having an opinion on industry developments shows that you're an organisation that cares - that's going to boost your reputation. 

Customer service is something we are proud of at Pomelo Pay, and I do believe if customer service is a top priority, then you will gain that long term winning reputation. The key to all of this is consistency across your brand. 

How do you both stay updated on the latest tools and trends?

Lex: Thankfully in my line of work, being addicted to social media keeps my work relevant. I love Pinterest and Dribbble, people post really beautiful things on there that are up to date with the latest trends. 

Rea: Like Lex, I use social media too to stay fresh and keep an eye on industry updates. Internally, we use Slack, and we have got some great channels in there to share information, from random tidbits to news. 

What is next for Pomelo Pay? Do you have anything exciting planned for the future?

Rea: 2021 is a really exciting year for us as a company. We feel it is time we take things up to the next level. I am really excited to announce that I have been project managing a company rebrand that will be officially launching soon. It’s looking really good - I am so proud of the team who have been working hard behind the scenes, and we can’t wait to share this with everyone.

Lex: I am super excited about the card issuing. Designing a debit card is a first for me and I can't wait to have it in my hands!

About Pomelo Pay

Pomelo Pay is a hardware-free digital payments service provider, founded in 2017 by a team of financial services and tech specialists. As a principal member of Mastercard, regulated by the FCA, and with PCI at Level 1, it is a trusted partner of businesses, big and small, across the UK and Asia.

We help businesses by introducing multiple touch points for them to take payments on the go, in person, remotely, online, and through a payment gateway. Click below to find out how your business can benefit from digital payments by speaking with our Sales Team.