Digital Brand Review goes Open Source

The Digital Brand Review is released under a creative commons licence.

The Digital Brand Review (DBR) has been evolving over the last couple of years. For us the most logical step is to release it, without strings, into the world on a creative commons licence. We call this the DIY version. We think its powerful, useful, quick and simple. We urge marketers, brand agencies and agencies to use it and adapt. And if you want our help please get in touch.

What are our aims?

DBR is a process and a way of thinking.
And then a tiny bit of math.

The graphs and process is a simple yet powerful way of looking at what we already know.

This process is not dependent on or unique to our skills, or on any technology - it is for everyone. Therefore we want to show everyone the process and see what happens. Could be nothing happens at all, could be a community of users. As lecturers our philosophy is one of knowledge sharing. Therefore an Open Source route seems right and just.


So why have we done this?

The simple fact is the only way to show the power of the DBR is to get a bunch of people in the room and show it in action. The more people using and showing the better.

We have been working with a lot of agencies and taking them through the process, and results of the DBR. This has been fun and enlightening. We also have been using the DBR for teaching undergraduates too. And of course we have taking numerous brand managers, C-Suite people and customers through the process & reports we have written.

After showing the corporate reviews, we seem to be spending a lot of time "fixing" or helping with whatever we have uncovered. Often small pieces of technical or design work. But more and more we as Phenotype are being asked to do larger strategy pieces. All of this is great. It is not what we planned to be doing but it is really fun.

This also fits into our own story. We Phenotypers are great at solving problems, the DBR is part of this puzzle but not the end of the journey.

Lastly the Digital Brand Review was designed as a tool, and one to disrupt some established companies and practices. A Do It Yourself, quick and totally free version seems to us the best way to do that.

What next? 

We are interested in partners who would like to run with this, and would love to have feedback good and bad on any adaptions and tweaks. We also are available for speaking and seminar engagements - The DBR works best of all in groups - staff meetings are perfect. We still love creating independent audits of brands. The DBR is useful in two ways: Firstly it will show that you, your team and perhaps your clients are in agreement; Secondly that all your media (in our case online) "channels" are in agreement. This second step is more difficult and less useful, the closer you are to the brand.

This is not the end of the Digital Brand Review story but the beginnings of the next phase.

-Sam Collett

Please see the infographic below or head over to for templates and more info