Which comes first for a brand – tone of voice or visuals?

brand tone of voice

Working with a new client this week, we’ve been talking extensively about the personality of their brand and its essence. What has been so interesting is that this conversation has been happening in the wake of our initial set of creative work for them. It’s been the trigger for that series of questions.

One would usually imagine that to create successful new design work for a brand you would think all the ‘values stuff’ through beforehand. This is particularly the case with what we call their ‘brand tone of voice’. While it’s true that thinking and writing first is the best method in theory, sometimes to draft a new set of ideas based on a rough brief can help define the truth of that brand.

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The helping Hand – our guide to web design for consulting businesses

‘Design consultancy’ is a somewhat dry term for what we do. But it’s about right. People come and talk to me about how their business might improve its communications. We then consult – which essentially means an initial conversation ensuring we’re talking our client’s visual and verbal language.

But when I meet someone who themselves runs a consultancy we’ve immediately got even more to discuss. There’s an understanding, if you will, of the service we are offering. Interestingly we’ve been doing a fair amount of this kind of work lately.

Earlier this summer we worked on a brand and website project for financial services management consultancy AlgoMe. Then this week we’ve completed a brand review and website redesign for The Hand – who offer business mentoring and lead generation for creative consultancies.

Both of these are great examples of our work providing brand and web design for consulting businesses.

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Brand planning for 2019: find space to figure out what’s next

brand planning for 2019

The dog days of August are a precious resource. Clients and team members are taking time off. The phone isn’t ringing quite as much. Some might rejoice in the peace and quiet.

But for anyone who considers themselves a forward planner this is one of the best times of the year to chew the end of a pencil and have a bit of a think.

How have things gone?
Did that new year launch work out?
Is the carefully-written, long-term business strategy at the bottom of a drawer still gathering dust?
What’s next?

Should we – big gulp! – be doing a spot of brand planning for 2019?

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A great example of Management Consultancy brand and web design

Management Consultancy brand and web design

I’ve been thinking lately about what management consultants do. My conclusion wasn’t a particularly revolutionary one: namely that ultimately a good consultancy will ensure that the right people are in the right place in a business, so it works and grows in the most effective way.

But this idea – of talented people being at the heart of ensuring a business works better – particularly struck me while we were completing a project for AlgoMe Consulting. They have spent the past couple of years building an online platform that matches people with career opportunities, mentoring relationships and the kind of professional networking events that can be so effective in business life.

Our brief from AlgoMe was to build on this, creating a management consultancy brand and web design project – utilising the creative work from the platform and defining them as a standalone business.

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Design for charities: our work for the Shine School Media Awards 2018

design for charities

Every summer at Stationers’ Hall in the centre of London, there’s a day of creative celebration. The Shine School Media Awards rewards the talent of secondary school students around the UK who are working, sometimes entirely outside their schooldays, to better themselves and forge the path to their future career.

We’ve been a contributor to the Awards programme now for five years, giving our time to this fantastic endeavour.

It’s a great portfolio example of our work when we design for charities.

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Northbank Talent launches – a new media brand design

new media brand design

At the end of 2017 we were approached to work on the total re-brand of literary agency Diane Banks Associates. After over two years of planning, the management team had decided to fundamentally re-consider their business offering.

Today if you’re an author you don’t just write a book and then retreat back to your desk to start on the next one. There’s a world of talks, tours, social and traditional media where the lifespan of your work is extended.

With this, the traditional notion of a literary agent has fundamentally shifted… to one of thought leaders across multiple disciplines and exposure. The notion then is to take on clients with a far wider set of disciplines. This was no ordinary creative project – we were creating a new media brand design.

The end result of all this preparation is now revealed – and it’s called Northbank Talent Management.

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