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Our work is our advocacy. These are just six of the many case studies on this site showcasing our work and the results we deliver for clients.
NZ Post ecommerce Report 2019
NZ Post ecommerce Report 2019
Rebranding The Sir Peter Blake Trust
Rebranding The Sir Peter Blake Trust
Breadraft's Rebel Bakehouse new brand creation
Breadraft's Rebel Bakehouse new brand creation
Victoria University of Wellington Undergraduate Recruitment Campaign 2018
Victoria University of Wellington Undergraduate Recruitment Campaign 2018
Mercury’s augmented reality Waikato River experience
Mercury’s augmented reality Waikato River experience
St John retail store network
St John retail store network
Victoria University of Wellington Undergraduate Recruitment Campaign 2018
Victoria University of Wellington Undergraduate Recruitment Campaign 2018
Tamaki Regeneration Company Branding
Tamaki Regeneration Company Branding
Our Expertise. What we do best.
So much more than your name, your logo or visual identity, a brand reflects what you stand for and how you want to be perceived.
So much more than your name, your logo or visual identity, a brand reflects what you stand for and how you want to be perceived.
The best brands are built inside out, effectively engaging and aligning staff perception and behaviour with strategy, culture and performance.
The best brands are built inside out, effectively engaging and aligning staff perception and behaviour with strategy, culture and performance.
We approach digital from a communication, not technical, perspective, engaging audiences online with brand-aligned experiences that are intuitive and rewarding.
We approach digital from a communication, not technical, perspective, engaging audiences online with brand-aligned experiences that are intuitive and rewarding.
Your communication and marketing programmes should be driven by clear insights, engaging audiences towards the desired action.
Your communication and marketing programmes should be driven by clear insights, engaging audiences towards the desired action.
The right environments reinforce brand and culture, drive behaviours and create an engaging environment for staff and visitors.
The right environments reinforce brand and culture, drive behaviours and create an engaging environment for staff and visitors.
Good investor communication is much more than just reporting. A clearly communicated long-term investor brand helps you attract, grow and retain investors and capital.
Good investor communication is much more than just reporting. A clearly communicated long-term investor brand helps you attract, grow and retain investors and capital.
Blog Posts. Thought-leading insights.

Celebrating creative thinking - week 9

13 Sep 2019 by Alice McKeown

Strategic creative is the sum of two parts, strategy and design coming together. This week we asked our strategy and client service teams to discuss their pick of Insight work that does this successfully.   ...

celebrating creative thinking - week 9 alice mckeown

strategic creative is the sum of two parts, strategy and design coming together. this week we asked our strategy and client service teams to discuss their pick of insight work that does this successfully.

 

 

argosy annual report 2019

earlier this year argosy did some work around formalising and refreshing their business strategy to ‘create. manage. own.’. the strategy was launched publicly with the annual report so this needed to communicate the reset in their approach clearly to shareholders. on the cover, we used a triangle constructed from three coloured dots to create a sense of intrigue. the opening spread of the report then reveals the association of the dots (and colours) to create, manage and own. on the following pages this is explained in even greater detail, with proof points to show how they are delivering on their strategy across the business.

— claire evans

 

 

blake identity

it solved a generational change issue but with a super-smart nod to its legacy. it has the versatility to accommodate multiple “products” with strong evocative design. finally, the creative retained what the organisation and it’s founder have always been about – clear, environmental focus. plus the use of the albatross into the word is just genius.

— jason linnell

 

this is an exceptional example of clever strategic creative work. we successfully managed to navigate tricky waters (excuse the pun) to restructure their product offering and deliver a world-class wordmark/visual identity that has propelled their organisation forward, while still maintaining important ties to the legacy of their past.

— gabe graham

 

 

nz post — the full download

my pick for a good strategic-creative example is nz post the full download. as it says in the case study, “our first strategic recommendation was to move to a digital-first approach, with print as the supporting medium”. sounds obvious, right! it took insight, lucid thinking and thinking big to make it happen. we could’ve done just another printed report, but where is the strategic-creative in that? how’s the client helped by that?

— paul saris

 

 

 

 

meredith connell

the meredith connell rebrand. i felt it was the perfect example of strategy and design coming together to make a major change for a client. it hit the brief and is still going strong 4 years later. we’ve recently done the wellington office fit-out and are currently working on updating some of the auckland office graphics. it is a fun brand, full of attitude. projects like this don’t come across too often and it is always one which brings me joy.

— monique wallace

design, creative celebration, insight creative, strategic creative

Designing the Future

20 Aug 2019 by Steven Giannoulis

Last week I was fortunate enough to attend day one of Semi-Permanent –  The Future of the Future . I do like going to these things and often walk away inspired by an idea or two. Mostly I find design events are...

designing the future steven giannoulis

last week i was fortunate enough to attend day one of semi-permanent – the future of the future. i do like going to these things and often walk away inspired by an idea or two. mostly i find design events are about the design community showing off how clever they are while trying to convince their peers that we make the world a better place. this time though, it was actually about design saving the world. 

the day started with ivy ross, head of hardware design at google. she opened with “designers are problem-solvers” which was always going to appeal to me. my philosophy is design isn’t what we do but how we do it. what we do is help our clients address the challenges and opportunities facing their businesses, and their audiences. ivy then went on to talk about how google’s hardware was designed to address the deep human needs that only a latecomer to the device market can fully appreciate. who needs another black plastic box she said – and i agree. everything about the design was thoughtful and human, led by natural shapes, textures and colours that drive feelings. better still, it was made with innovative, environmentally friendly, natural materials.

and then there was google’s a space for being exhibition at milan design week. wow! i’ve always known design is about how it makes you feel but now we know that your body physically reacts to it as well. design can help with stress, anxiety and happiness. lesson learnt: surround yourself with stuff that makes you feel good. 

 “i’ve always known design is about how it makes you feel but now we know that your body physically reacts to it as well”

 

the kickstarter guy – charles adler– was interesting in showing the pace of change and illustrating the idea of technology bringing us closer together. the outtake: with so much rapid change, the rules are always temporary, just waiting for someone to break them. 

“the rules are always temporary, just waiting for someone to break them”

  

bruce mau from massive change network blew my mind. after all, he’s redesigning the holy city of mecca and making beautiful furniture from coke bottles. he talked about the rapid pace of change and the problems we humans have created. he felt, as designers, we have a responsibility to redesign everything to find answers to the biggest challenges we face as a race. he invited us to ‘imagineer’ in order to create solutions that last, solutions that deliver to the needs of a world double the current population and to deliver open systems solutions that could adapt and evolve in a world of rapid change. he cited nature and indigenous cultures as sources of inspiration who’ve mastered this thinking. so next time, you’re redesigning mecca think about solutions that could still be relevant in a thousand years not just the next 20!

“think about solutions that could still be relevant in a thousand years not just the next 20!”

 

ana arriola from microsoft leads their ai capability. i was expecting a sci-fi talk about advances in technology and what the robots will do in the years to come. instead we got a very human-led talk about the biases we as humans have and how we are in danger of introducing these into a discriminating ai world. she delivered strong message about inclusivity, ubiety and asking why and not just how. you come to these events to have your mind expanded and your perceptions challenged – ana did just that.

“we are in danger of introducing human biases into a discriminating ai world”

 

we finished up with carla hjort from space10, ikea’s innovation lab. i always worry when speakers kick off with nietzche and the meaning of existence but carla’s story also featured lsd, numerous dance festivals, a cult in india and a catchy-tune about ‘feeding the horse’. the outtake for me was that she thinks differently about ikea and their contribution to the world because she’s experienced the world in such a different way. ikea’s change is driven by a clarity of purpose and a big and long-term perspective. carla, too, advocated a licence to rethink everything and, like our kickstarter guy, taking a rebellious approach.

 

my takeaways

so what do i take back to the office from this? firstly, i was struck that the bad guys – microsoft, coke, google, etc – are potentially also the good guys in disguise. on a more personal level: know your purpose, have principles, think bigger and bolder, think longer-term, challenge convention and always use our design superpower for good. the world’s got big problems – environmental, scarcity of resources, the pressure of time and change, inclusiveness and many more. everything we do every day should be part of a bigger solution, or at the very least not add to the problem. ivy said it best “as people trained to design solutions, it would be remiss of us not to help solve the biggest problems facing our planet.”  

insight is going to need to add a ‘saving the world from itself’ work stream to our project taxonomy.

semi permanent, future of the future,

Reviving and Revising Moments of Truth

20 Aug 2019 by Mike Tisdall

Moments of Truth  is one of my go-to strategic tools when advising clients on customer-centricity, or more grimly, when trying to analyse and attempting to reverse a company’s fading fortunes. What...

reviving and revising moments of truth mike tisdall

moments of truth is one of my go-to strategic tools when advising clients on customer-centricity, or more grimly, when trying to analyse and attempting to reverse a company’s fading fortunes.

what surprises me almost every time, though, is that most business managers haven’t heard of it. 

so, first, a brief history

the concept is most associated with jan carlzon, a former ceo of sas (scandinavian air services). he became leader of the airline at a time of deep recession and identified that the only differentiator he could call on to succeed was an impeccable customer experience. he calculated that in a single flight of a few hours, a traveller would only experience a few short minutes that would affect their emotional response to the whole experience. these were the moments in the customer journey that made or broke brand perceptions. from memory, they were check-in, boarding, meal service, disembarking and luggage retrieval. each of these contact points was a defining moment – a ‘moment of truth’ – because it is in the moment and at the point of this ‘snapshot’ that a traveller decides whether to use the service again. carlzon did all he could to develop staff management of these moments, with astonishing successfor his airline, which eventually became one of the most admired in the industry.

the concept has, of course, been used across many industries since. 

how do you apply the thinking?

it’s such a sound and powerful concept that it has as much value today as ever. as most marketers know, no matter what marketing fads and new technologies come along to seduce and distract us (and gobble increasing shares of our marketing budget), the fundamentals of human nature and core marketing principles are still critically relevant.

the process involves detailed analysis of your customer journey, and insightful mapping of those points along the journey that are your company's moments of truth. of course, different businesses and business models may well have a longer list of moments, and many businesses may have more than one customer journey to trace and map. but the principle remains.

thirty years on, what are the new opportunities?

well, the principle hasn’t stood still. twenty years after carlzon, in 2005, proctor & gamble chair, president and ceo, a. g. lafley, opined that that there were three different types of moments of truth: 1. pre-sale, when the customer is looking at and researching the product; 2. when the customer actually purchases the product and uses it; and 3. post-sale, when customers provide feedback to the company, and their friends, colleagues and family members etc. and in the era of social media, we all know how influential that can be.

and in the digital age?

enter amit sharma. sharma started working with walmart in 2006, designing the next generation multi-channel supply chain network, then joined apple in 2010 where he drove all aspects of the shipping and delivery experience. eventually, he left apple to start his own company, narvar, which focuses on the after experiencethe period of time from when the customer buys a product online to when he receives it. that can be as short as two hours with amazon’s new expedited delivery program, or several days, or even longer. it is that gapwhich is where this new moment of truth lives.

from here, i’ll let forbes writer, shep hyken, take up sharma’s story (edited for brevity):

 

in the online world, retailers drop the ball after customers click “buy.” customers don’t know when they’re going to receive their package. they might be able to track it on the fedex page, but there’s no branded moment or cohesive experience. this creates a gap in the experience.

once the customer hits the “buy” button on a website, the company may send an ‘order received’ or ‘order shipped’ notification but most companies now turn the order over to a carrier like fedex or ups. not only is there the lack of a branded experience, there’s no control over the outcome.

if the shipment shows up late, whose fault is it? it may the shipper’s fault, but who does the customer call? not the shipping company. the retailer usually steps up and apologises, and then works to right what went wrong, even though it was totally out of their control.

that gap is sharma’s concern. the company loses control over the process. but, more importantly, there is nothing to control the customer’s emotions during that time. what can you do to reinforce that the customer made the right decision to buy the product and do business with you? how can you boost customer confidence and avoid buyer’s remorse?

this is an opportunity to add value with a branded moment.

for example, a customer buys shaving cream through an online retailer. in addition to the notice that the product has shipped, the company can now provide suggestions on how to best use the product. maybe it’s the middle of winter and the company sends a link to a video on how to protect your skin against dry and windy weather.

or perhaps the customer just bought a workbench from a specialist online hardware retailer. shortly after the purchase, the customer would welcome a video on how to put the workbench together, the space needed, the tools required, etc.

both of these are examples of a branded experience that happens while the customer waits for the merchandise to show up. innovative companies such as nordstrom, sephora and rei, who really understand customer journeys, are now capitalising on this new moment of truth.

 

carlzon’s original principle of finding and perfecting the moments of truth in the customer journey is as sound and useful today as it ever was. and extending the concept to today’s more holistic full user journey is the intelligent new iteration.

for me, it’s a concept that i still use today as much as i ever have. and reading how sharma has extended the theory to the online shopping age, i have now sharpened one of the better implements in my toolkit.

strategic marketing tools, marketing, moments of truth
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