Earlier this year I came to the conclusion that the Maine Marketing brand image had reached its sell by date. The time had come for a sharper, more purposeful and contemporary look. This would be the third iteration of the brand since 2003.
At this point I have to put my hand up and admit to not having followed any classic marketing practices in arriving at any bar the last of these iterations. Instead they have been the results of opportunism and happy creative accidents. The foundations were laid for the first version with the creation of a gatefold leaflet to launch the new business designed by Imagehaus, now The Creative Haus Ltd, in Borehamwood. This included some striking x-ray imagery of fish with one picked out in orange with the headline ‘ We can make you stand out from the crowd !’. When it came to business cards and stationery this became the image to use. It was certainly memorable and established shades of blue and orange as the house colours for Maine Marketing.
This all worked fine until I needed to create some pop up banners for business exhibitions and felt that the x-ray fish, when blown up to banner size, were just too scary for their own good. Believing that retaining some continuity was important I arrived at an image of a shoal of graphical fish, one of which stands out in orange, on an upward, aspirational, curve and am indebted to Kathryn Holloway at Promofix in Bridgnorth for help in making this work.
This imagery served Maine Marketing well for eight years or so but by 2015 the time had come to update the brand image for the social media age and for the first time I actually wrote a brief that expressed the desired perception as a provider of:
- ‘Intelligent advice and creative implementation through productive, enjoyable and ongoing business partnerships that allow the business owner to focus on their core activity while maintaining continuity of effective marketing activity’.
and also that:
- ‘The rebrand needs to maintain a sense of ‘not the usual marketing b***s**t’ with a sense of professionalism, support and the ability to propel client’s to another level with practical and tailored solutions.
It needs to achieve clarity of identification and brand communication on social media platforms, web and print, including banners and signage’.
The result, created by Joel Stone at Salop Creative in Shrewsbury, is an evolution into a sharper, more contemporary brand image that retains the upwardly mobile fish, albeit in more digitised form, and the house colours. It is better suited to telling people what Maine Marketing is about and includes a new tag line “Creative Communication creates opportunities” that strengthens that proposition.
What have I learnt from this exercise? That sometimes a happy creative accident is all you need, sometimes it pays to write a proper brief and give it to a creative graphic designer to deliver your vision, always remembering that today’s creative solution has a finite lifespan and will need to evolve again in time.