A one-agency approach to branding, identity & digital
What are the benefits of using one agency for three highly specialised disciplines: brand strategy, visual identity, and digital?
Brands work only when the threads of their strategy run through every aspect of their visual and verbal identity, digital and social channels.
As an agency that’s spent years nurturing a team to deliver this specialist, joined-up approach, we understand exactly what expertise is needed to unite what are, on the face of it, very different skills.
Each of these disciplines typically represents a significant investment, but when done right, the processes won’t need to be repeated for a number of years.
We know how to weave these threads together, seamlessly, to deliver value and, most importantly, commercial and cultural impact.
The benefits of the one-agency approach
Working with a single agency to define a unified essence, positioning, messaging and identity, and then translating and applying them to your most important touchpoints not only takes advantage of streamlined communication, it ensures a more considered and cohesive end result.
Our all-hands-on-deck approach develops a deeper understanding of our partner’s businesses across each of our departments, enabling a clarity and consistency of communication that benefits both the people that consume the brand’s products and, just as importantly, the people that create and maintain them.
Communicating with consistency
A single agency partnership will help to maintain the clarity and consistency of messaging that your brand needs, particularly in the early stages of development and launch. It’s vital to create this consistency across multiple touchpoints and ensure that the hierarchy of communication is carefully managed from day one.
Depth of understanding
Because we’re a small team, each of us is given the same opportunity and resource to collaborate with you and spend time face-to-face. This increases the understanding of your service, your offering, your brand, and the market that you’re targeting.
Our whole team thrives on involvement at every stage of our process, it gives them the fuel they need to help you communicate successfully and authentically.
Internal collaboration and streamlined communication
There is a huge benefit to bringing everyone along on the journey so that at each stage you’ll be meeting and engaging with people who will be working on your brand in the future.
Our designers and developers may not do brand strategy, but they will get sight of yours way before we start designing your identity, planning a website, or writing any code. Our team’s involvement in the early stages means we keep the momentum up as we transition from one department to another.
And, because our team collaborates and catches up multiple times a day, we share information immediately, ensuring that everyone knows what the status of your project is and when they’ll need to bring their expertise to the party.
“We’re at our best when we partner with purposeful, people-positive organisations applying the skills of every department to help them define their brand, develop their visual and verbal identities, and build their necessary digital environments.”
As a senior team, we bring decades of project management experience to bear on the process. Actually, we see a huge benefit to all of us taking some element of responsibility for managing your project. That way, you can be working directly with a designer, strategist, or developer, rather than always going through an intermediary who has less knowledge on the subjects and areas they are talking about.
This means far less chance of information being lost or badly communicated, more efficient use of your time, and faster turnaround times, in general, by working directly with the people on the tools.
Overcoming limited perspectives
Whilst working with a single agency can bring many benefits in terms of the concentration and consistency of brand essence and messaging, it’s also true that a limit on people can also equate to a limit on the different perspectives that can be brought to bear on a particular problem.
This is where our curiosity and collaborative spirit really start to shine through.
Where necessary, we commission strategic research to gather a range of voices and perspectives on a particular problem. This might mean opening up our creative process to audience testing, using your customer base as a repository of knowledge, or simply acknowledging that our expertise needs to be bolstered by more specific skills.
Amplifying our internal expertise where necessary
So whilst there are huge benefits to a one-agency approach, it might be disingenuous to say that a single agency of our size can cover the entire range of specialisms needed.
After 20+ years of working in this industry, we’ve built significant strategic relationships with other experts, and we often draw on their services to compliment our own. Strategists, animators, illustrators, researchers, copywriters, UX consultants, digital marketing specialists… the list goes on.
Our ageing Rolodex (albeit now digital) is full of trusted contacts whose expertise we can call on to help us solve specific problems.
The beauty is in the relationship
At Salad, there’s one critical point that focuses us like no other, and that is the relationship. Our belief in the power of partnership to generate clarity and consistency is key to the way we operate and deliver results that everyone can be proud of.
Put simply, we’re best when we work together and share our combined teams’ knowledge and expertise.
Partnerships depend on passion
For us, passion acts as a type of renewable energy. Once we’ve experienced the passion that our clients bring to our partnerships, we thrive on it and, in turn, it creates the passion we need to continuously produce exceptional work.
Take our partnership with Passenger, for instance.
A group of individuals developing transformative digital experience platforms for mass transportation operating companies. Every staff member was invited to be part of the process and, it seemed, that every staff member brought every ounce of their energy, ideas and commitment. What ensued was not only the most beautifully competitive brand strategy workshop we’ve ever run, but also a deep sense of passion directed towards the vision of the company. That passion embedded itself into every stage of the project, from brand strategy through identity and into the digital.
Their passion fuelled ours.
The consistency of the brand message, the working group and the focus we applied meant that the project flowed smoothly from one department to another, in parallel with the passion.
Partnerships depend on honesty
Honesty is the backbone of any relationship, cultivated over time through the sharing of ideas, information and ideals. Without honesty, there’s no progress. Honesty can mean many things – winning and losing together, difficult conversations, candid communications. Crucially, honesty leads to empathy. Without empathy, we’re hamstrung.
Empathy allows us to see our partner’s business and problems from their perspective. Not lines of items in a spreadsheet of monthly invoices, but people striving to achieve something special. It allows us to say “if this were our business…” before we offer advice, and actually mean it.
What we’ve found over the years of developing and maintaining relationships with all sorts of businesses in many different sectors, is that the better the relationship, the more passion shared between parties, the more empathy we can apply. When we find ourselves positioned as partners, not clients or suppliers, we’ll go further, with more courage, more conviction and deeper collaboration. We will be encouraged to create clarity and we can thread it, consistently, through the entire body of work included in a project.
Take advantage of a joined up service
If you’re interested in talking to us about a brand, identity or digital project or just want to find out more about us and what we do, please get in touch with a member of the team.