With the diversity of businesses which can be found throughout London office buildings, particularly within the City (which is becoming increasingly diverse year by year) is there any wonder that companies want to represent their brand image and clearly mark their position within the iconic skyline?
This may be considered fair for the company in question but how does this reflect on the City and other tenants within these buildings? Is it just cheap advertising or does it in fact offer something extra to the building and the City aesthetic?
Conflicting London Boroughs
Well, currently this debate is very strong with different London locations taking differing viewpoints on the matter. The Square Mile enforces strict rules upon London office buildings and their occupants; the area has the tightest planning rules of any major business location. Companies here are only able to brand buildings if they own or are the lead occupier within it. Canary Wharf on the other hand takes a completely different approach. London office buildings within this area are allowed outer neon lighting as well as corporate naming.
With this in mind we asked the Londonoffices consultants who work with, and sell space within London office buildings every day for their opinions of the branding and how it affects their job roles.
Views on the matter were certainly mixed. Some people welcomed the branding while others saw it in a similar light to the sponsorship of football stadiums.
Shivani, who is originally from London, is one consultant who is pro-branding. She said, “If the building is iconic because of a company or location, then I think branding can create more interest in a structure.”
In a similar vein another consultant commented, “I think it adds character to a building and makes it more of a ‘landmark’ for people to recognise. Many people will use a brand name in the same way others use their nicknames, the Gherkin or the Cheese-grater for example.”
Branding London Office Buildings – Effects on the Economy and Business
It is true that adding a touch of personality to a building and giving it an already well-known brand name certainly makes it easier to remember than street names and numbers. This is undoubtedly an aid when enticing businesses, especially those from outside of London or the UK entirely.
Schae, our Central London Sales Manager said, “Branding buildings showcases its history. NatWest’s old HQ for example is a reminder that this big name in business was a previous occupier. When clients recognise these names, Salesforce for example, it draws them in rather than deters them in in my opinion.”
On the other hand, one consultant commented that branding London office buildings may ‘deter some prospective clients.’ If a specific brand doesn’t reflect the image or identity which a particular company are trying to portray for themselves, office providers may find businesses rejecting their spaces regardless of how ideal it is.
There are definitely pros and cons for this argument. Even London itself can’t agree on whether it is the right thing to do. Let’s just hope that we don’t end up, as one consultant feared, with iconic London office buildings named ‘SportsDirect.com Tower’ or the ‘Bet 365 Building’.
What are your thoughts on this topic? Let us know in the comments below.