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Dan Dufour

Author profile

Dan is specialist in brand purpose and one of the sector’s leading brand strategists. He has worked on brand development across all sectors including Rightmove, London 2012 and Cancer Research UK. He’s best known for his award-winning work across all corners of the charity sector, including Shelter, Parkinson’s UK, RSPB and Scope. Dan established CharityComms Brand Breakfast and is an author of our best practice guides to branding and integrated communications.

assorted colour blocks. Credit Sen on Unsplash
25 March 2022
Brands are now using their purpose as a springboard for innovation. This blog explores brand-led innovation in more detail. What it is, what we can learn from it, and which brands are doing it well?...
14 December 2021
Cruse Bereavement Support has reframed its brand positioning around the idea ‘You’re Not Alone’. Built on the values Kind, Genuine, Inclusive and Ambitious...
Street art on a wall
17 September 2021
Over recent years there have been winds of change afoot in brand so now seems like a good time to think about how charity branding has been changing...
A selection of coloured picture frames
30 July 2021
Branding in the charity sector is highly emotive. People care deeply about charity causes and brands. Here are some top tips and some charities who have used them effectively...
20 May 2020
The ‘Brand 360’ guide is a resource dedicated to helping charity communicators with the vital work they are doing to ensure their organisations are being seen and heard.
15 May 2020
Most charities now have somebody responsible for brand and bigger charities have whole brand teams. But we still struggle with misunderstandings around what branding is and what it can achieve...
15 October 2019
With the boundaries between charity and business brands blurring, the recent Brand Breakfast explored how organisations can save their charity brand mojo by embracing purpose...
11 June 2019
The last Brand Breakfast explored how far you can stretch a brand before it snaps. Here we suggest two solutions to prevent your brand breaking in two: good audience segmentation and brand architecture...
5 March 2019
Most of our interactions with brands are now through digital channels. So surely it’s more important than ever to ask ourselves; how can brand and digital work more closely together to embrace new opportunities and reach audiences...
19 October 2018
At the last CharityComms Brand Breakfast, Bringing your brand to life through content, Danielle Wootton, head of marketing at Scope, shared how the charity employed content to activate its new #DisabilityGamechanger brand positioning. Danielle started by sharing Scope’s chequered brand history and the need for change. While the charity had high awareness, there was poor […]
14 July 2017
Once upon a time consistency was king. But at a recent Brand Breakfast on visual identity design, “flexibility” was the word of the day; how clearly defining the elements that make up your visual identity will enable you to design all manner of communications across channels and products, from a Macmillan coffee morning to a […]
4 November 2016
A rebrand is just the start of the story: a one-off project. After it comes the need to curate the brand to keep it strong for years to come with a long term commitment. To survive, brands need to be agile and willing to adjust to trends.  Fit for relevant channels  Nothing has made a […]
8 July 2016
One of my frustrations with charity branding is the fixation on how a brand looks externally. That’s why I was delighted a recent CharityComms Brand Breakfast focused on brand on the inside and how important people are to delivering the right customer experience to build trust and loyalty amongst supporters. We need our people  There is […]
22 January 2016
Does your brand enable integration or hinder it? To survive in today’s fast-moving world, brands need to be agile, adapt and react quickly and not be set in stone. We live in a global, hyper-connected world where the pace of business is much faster and where transparency is expected. Disruption is everywhere as the barriers to […]
31 July 2015
The third sector as we know it is changing. The worlds of commerce and charity are getting closer. People want companies to make life better, not just make a profit. They want charities to enrich their lives, not just take their money. What increasingly separates one brand from another is the good it does and […]
16 February 2015
When some people think of ‘brand’ they quickly jump to design and how things look, or possibly how design and language can be combined to create a distinct personality. But the best brands all have loyal followers who have an emotional connection to them. Strong brands, regardless of sector, are a collective of people aligned […]
12 June 2014
At the next CharityComms conference I’ll be sharing principles for building new customer relationships that stand the test of time, brought to life by RNIB’s first integrated campaign ‘I am here’. Here’s a preview of what myself and Natasha Dickenson, head of marketing and communications, RNIB will be discussing at Audience first: defining, understanding and […]
29 April 2014
April’s Brand Breakfast was a whistle-stop tour of brand architecture, the term used to describe how you structure and present your range of services, products, campaigns and fundraising initiatives to the outside world. Cancer Research’s flexible masterbrand system Kate Eden, head of brand at Cancer Research UK, kicked off proceedings with words of comfort from […]
17 September 2013
Brand Breakfasts on ‘rebranding’ are always popular and this one was no different, with presentations from SSAFA, Stroke Association and Friends of the Earth. We also had plenty of humour, honesty and swearing! Here are the highlights. SSAFA Athol Hendry, director of communications and marketing at SSAFA, spoke about his passion for engaging volunteers in […]
4 June 2013
Too often people underestimate the importance of how words and images need to work together for maximum impact. We also live in a world where many social media platforms are predominantly word-led, like Twitter. At CharityComms’ recent communicating core values through tone of voice seminar my Good Agency colleague, Reuben Turner took to the stage […]
9 October 2012
Last week’s Brand Breakfast was a great demonstration of how branding has become increasingly important across the sector. Not only did we have a packed event, but a waiting list. And we didn’t have just one presentation or even two, but three from Scope, Blue Cross and Cancer Research UK. What I enjoyed most was […]
18 June 2012
Dan Dufour reports from the latest Brand Breakfast on monitoring and evaluating your brand It has long been a bone of contention that too many charity brands are measured by the broad brush of public awareness and understanding, not their impact on income or how well they induce an emotional response from the target donor. […]
3 April 2012
On 28th March I attended an invigorating CharityComms Brand Breakfast on Brand Valuation, held at Action for Children. I admit to having flicked through the Brand Valuation chapter of Rita Clifton and John Simmons' Economist Guide to Brands and Branding again and again during my 10 years in charity branding, trying to get my head […]
21 June 2011
When most people think of brands they usually think of the visuals first. All too often people forget the importance of a brand’s choice of words. But a distinctive approach to the use of language (or tone of voice) is essential to be memorable. Innocent is one of the commercial brands out there most respected […]
8 March 2011
Brand values are much more than a collection of little words stuck up on office walls. They should drive both the way a charity behaves and the way it presents itself. Many brand projects focus on the visual expression of a brand. The importance of values and the impact of peoples’ behaviour on brand often […]
16 November 2010
In response to public sector cuts some quangos are now transforming into independent charities, and sectors such as the arts will increasingly be looking to raise income from charitable giving. The recent economic turmoil has resulted in some charities merging or even folding all together. And to make matters even more complicated the Government’s Big […]
5 May 2010
Dan Dufour reports on how Parkinson's UK managed their rebrand  Aligning your brand with your business strategy is a smart move. Charities with this joined-up approach benefit from everyone not only working toward the same goals, but talking and hearing about them in the same, consistent terms – inside and outside the organisation. When the […]
17 February 2010
Dan Dufour summarises lessons we can learn from HSBC's marketing HSBC is the largest European bank in the world. Its international network comprises around 8,500 offices, based in 86 countries in Europe, the Asia-Pacific, the Americas, the Middle East and Africa. So how do its marketing teams manage a strong and consistent global brand identity? Rupert […]
Dan Dufour