01323 840048
  • Brief lives – when a logo became a brand
    26/07/19 News

    Brief lives – when a logo became a brand

    Our clients come in all shapes and sizes. We love working on a high quality sales brochure for a multi-million pound organisation just as much as a flyer for a small, local, single-owner business. But, whatever the size of the client, nearly all projects we undertake have many things in common. Firstly, a client will have a requirement (a logo, a brochure, a website, exhibition display, a video). We will have a discussion with the client and an approach (or maybe several alternatives) are agreed upon. Creative work is undertaken and a design is either agreed upon or progresses with modification. Once a design is approved it will be implemented in whichever medium is required.

    That, in a nutshell, is our design process. I purposely have not gone into detail because, although there is much in common, still every project has its own subtle differences in approach.

    We were asked by Darren to look at a logo for his soon to be launched financial consultancy for which he had decided upon the name Redstone Wealth Management. In our meeting a clear brief was difficult to establish, but he wanted to be recognised as professional, serious and was keen to use the colour red.

    There are several approaches you might use for this type of brief. 1) You could write a brief and ask the client to check and sign off on that brief, 2) You could create a mood board from scratch identifying the type of approach you would like to take for this client, 3) You could present just one or two ideas and “sell” one or other in to the client or 4) You could take a scattergun approach and shower the client with ideas. Each of these has its merits and drawbacks but for this project we opted for The Scattergun. Reasons? Mainly time vs results vs budget. 1) Writing and agreeing a brief. There was a timescale in play and a back and forth discussion may have jeopardised that 2) The mood board would take time and therefore budget that this client simply did not have, 3) We aren’t ultra smooth sales people and certainly don’t believe in the emperor’s new clothes approach. So we went for a selection of logos, confident we would pretty much nail it the first time round and keep one or two up our sleeves should we need them.

    Brainstorming was interesting and went in several directions, from visuals as diverse as anglo-saxon runes, to rock strata. Each thought was sketched and the strongest would be developed and presented to the client as a standalone logo.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    On presentation the client said what he liked and disliked about each. Some were discounted instantly, but we kept coming back to the same four. We developed each a little further to give the client some idea of how it might work in practical situations such as a business card or website banner.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Over the years we have found there are times when you shouldn’t express a preference to a client and times when you should and this was one of those. The client was undecided and needed confident direction. The logo we kept coming back to was based upon an anglo-saxon rune for “stone” and we contrived to form an M and a W within the logo (Management and Wealth). So we pointed out there would be a great story behind it for Darren to pass on in turn to his clients.

    Despite not being an expert in ancient runes, he liked this thought very much and we developed it further, showing options for layout and typeface.

    I think this demonstrates the difference between a brand and a mere logo. A brand might have a story, it should have some weight behind it, some history or, dare I say, a “journey” behind it.

    I’m quite good at the visual language of these things but not so great at the written language, but what I would say is that Darren asked for a logo and has ended up with a brand – something he can flaunt with real confidence, will help him stand out against competitors and serve his business very well for years to come and we are very proud to have been a part of that.

    “I can say I enjoyed being part of the journey with you and I do use the story behind the logo when I hand over the business card. I have received positive feedback so far and my clients have really liked it. It brings depth to the brand and is a great starting point during my conversations.”

    Darren Ransom
    Financial Advisor
    Redstone Wealth Management

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  • 02/07/19 News

    Mmmmm, smooth…

    We’re programmed to make automatic decisions. With our senses. It kept our ancestors alive.
    Even though we’re no longer chased by giant Koalas, we’ve kept our primal instincts. We react to smell.
    To sight. To touch.

    The more senses your marketing can activate, the more effective it is. Add an eyecatching image.
    Print on super thick 450gsm board, then laminate with a special
    soft-touch finish. Make them stroke it. And buy it.

    Our Grand Suede range includes Business CardsShowcardsInvitationsFlyersMenus and Folders.
    Try in July and take an extra £10 off. Delivery is free.

    Oh… one more thing…

    The Sir David Attenborough effect

    Since we watched Sir David Attenborough on the BBC presenting Blue Planet 2, it’s been impossible to ignore the impact of single use plastics on our oceans and wildlife.

    We thought it was time to consider what we could do better.

    Biodegradable laminated print

    On 1st August 2018, we switched all of our matt and gloss laminated print to a new biodegradable laminate. That’s every laminated business card, flyer, folder, booklet cover, appointment card and postcard. It looks like regular lamination and feels lovely. When the print reaches the end of it’s useful life, it composts. Within two years it’s gone. Without leaving any contaminants in the soil.

    MORE DETAILS

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  • Lick at first sight!
    04/06/19 News

    Lick at first sight!

    We’re all attracted to beauty and shiny things. It’s in our nature and it’s impossible to override. Your marketing can make the most of these basic human instincts.

    One way is to add StarMarque spot gloss highlights to your promo material. The contrasting matt base causes the highlights to shimmer in the light. And get noticed. They bring marketing to life. And make people want to lick it. A lot.

    Try it, and save up to £50 on our StarMarque range in June. It’s bio-degradable too, which we’re very proud of!

    READ MORE

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  • Cuckmere Rural Business Network – May meeting
    25/04/19 News

    Cuckmere Rural Business Network – May meeting

    We will have our third CRBN meeting on Tuesday 21st May 2019 at the Berwick Inn (opposite Berwick Railway Station).
    Aimed at those in business in rural Wealden, including self-employed working from home, this event is open to all. Support, advice and knowledge sharing are our main objectives.
    We will have a short presentation by Ian Noble of Uckfield Chamber of Commerce.
    Arrival time 6.30pm for time to chat, then introductions at 7.15 followed by the talk, time for discussions then more informal networking. If you would like to stay on for a meal afterwards at 8.30, place your order on arrival.
    Please book your free place by emailing josie@hailshamcreative.com so we can let the venue know how many to expect.

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  • 08/04/19 News

    When should printing techniques and constraints get in the way of creativity? 

    Well, the answer is probably never, but it is important to evaluate every project. 

    Pretty much anything is achievable with the vast array of printing and imaging technology at our fingertips today, added to ‘traditional’ printing techniques. From beautiful deep, rich blues and turquoises, weird laminating and foiled finishes, embossing, debossing, specialist papers, etc, etc.

    You can arguably justify spending a fortune on printing a beautiful product brochure for luxury, bespoke, hand-built kitchens, whereas a flatpack, decent quality kitchen company might be wasting money if they distributed anything other than a good quality A4 leaflet.

    The temptation for some designers is to sell in the highest spec option in order to get a really sexy print job out of it and it can be completely  inappropriate. With all the years we have spent in the marketing industry, we have got quite good at talking people out of wasting their marketing budget. We are not afraid of suggesting a client go’s for the higher spec if they happen to be that supplier of luxury, bespoke, hand-built kitchens however.

    The clever (creative) bit is choosing when to suggest something extra.

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  • 02/04/19 News

    Print and direct mail is proven to build trust.
    It’s perceived to be more credible. It plays with emotions.

     

    Sometimes too much choice is daunting. That’s why we’ve updated our Print Buying Guide which features our top selling collections. Our most popular, best value ranges, with a few curious and quirky options sprinkled in.

     

    To celebrate its launch, we’re offering 10% OFF when you buy any 2 items, or 20% OFF when you buy any 3 items from the guide.

    Download our new 2019 Print Buying Guide and use the voucher codes for exclusive discounts until the end of April 2019!

     

     

    *** Worried about missing out on our offers? Join our mailing list and worry no more! ***

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  • Exciting news!
    27/02/19 News

    Exciting news!

    Hello. It’s us. We are still Hailsham Creative but better. We are Hailsham Creative…at printing.com!
    As your new printing.com studio, we’re pleased to offer the largest range of print in the land. You buy local but at online prices. You get the value of online with the convenience and peace of mind of talking to a real person.
    So, give us a call and we’ll arrange a meeting. We’ll show you loads of new cool stuff to help you promote and grow your business. Whether it’s great value print, next generation displays or stunning web and graphic design, we can help.

    Ask us to send you a shiny new sample pack.

    BUY PRINT

    printing.com studio launch

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  • Rural Networking
    06/02/19 News

    Rural Networking

    CRBN invitation header image RGBWe are running the Cuckmere Rural Business Network

    This stems from an initiative by Action in Rural Sussex :

    “Rural communities across East Sussex are full of small businesses and enterprises many run by a single person, often from home or a small business facility.

    Running a business or developing an idea into a business can be challenging, particularly when doing so on your own. Complying with regulations and rules can be overwhelming and scary, and many businesses aren’t sustainable or don’t grow as their owners wish, often because identifying and accessing cost-effective support is seen as difficult, expensive or not a valuable use of their time.

    In partnership with Lets Do Business Group, [this is] part of a new initiative which seeks to provide an informal forum for local people to come together and explore both specific and general business issues, but also to hear about the wide range of FREE business support on offer to assist them in growing their business and running it effectively.”

     

    Running our business from a home office in Wilmington, East Sussex, we felt this was a pretty good idea so got involved and agreed to host an event, launching the Cuckmere Rural Business Network in November 2018. Having been to many different styles of networking event, we thought we’d start informal and see how it develops. The next meeting is on Tuesday evening, 19th February at the Berwick Inn (opposite Berwick railway station). Although this is aimed at helping the smaller, rural businesses, anyone in business is welcome to come along to meet those not normally seen at town networking events.

    We will have a short presentation by Ian Smallwood of Let’s Do Business and a talk about how to stay focussed on your business – let’s face it, we all struggle with that at times!
    Arrival time 6.30pm for time to chat, then introductions at 7.15 followed by the talk, time for discussions then more informal networking.

    Remember to bring plenty of business cards and any promotional material you may have. Of course, we can help there if you need something designed or printed. We have lots of good ideas for how to show off your business at its best.

     

    These events are supported by Let’s Do Business and Action in Rural Sussex

    Please BOOK YOUR FREE PLACE so we can let the venue know how many to expect.

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  • Hit 2019 Running
    14/12/18 News , Promotions # , , , , ,

    Hit 2019 Running

    To help you kick start your new year’s marketing and networking, we’re offering discounts on selected print until the end of January.

    • 30% off A5 Leaflets (Regular Gloss Leaflets, quantities of 1000 and 5000)
    • 10% off all Business cards
    • 10% off all A6 Flyers
    • 10% off all Stationery (Letterheads, Continuation Sheets, Compliment Slips)

    Call us on 01323 840048 or email us on info@hailshamcreative.com to talk about your order.

    Discounts will be applied to qualifying print orders placed and paid for before the 31st of January 2019. Excludes artwork and design fees. Print turnaround times vary from 2 to 5 working days depending on the product.


    We are also organising a FREE networking event which may be of interest to you, the Cuckmere Rural Business Network

    These free informal meetings are aimed at those running small businesses in rural Wealden, including self-employed people working from home, but the meetings are open to all.

    The next meeting is on Tuesday evening, 19th February at the Berwick Inn (opposite Berwick railway station).

    We will have a short presentation by Ian Smallwood of Let’s Do Business and a talk about how to stay focussed on your business.
    Arrival time 6.30pm for time to chat, then introductions at 7.15 followed by the talk, time for discussions then more informal networking.

    These events are supported by Let’s Do Business and Action in Rural Sussex

    Please BOOK YOUR FREE PLACE so we can let the venue know how many to expect.

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  • A camel is a horse designed by committee
    04/10/18 News

    A camel is a horse designed by committee

     

    Many of us know the saying “A camel is a horse designed by committee”, denigrating the aesthetics of a camel. To quote another saying however, “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”.

    We all know the camel is in fact a creature perfectly suited to its habitat and that a thoroughbred horse would quickly become the archetypal pile of parched white bones in those arid conditions. Furthermore, unless you take the old testament literally, the camel was not ‘designed’ at all of course – it evolved over many hundreds of thousands of years to become the “ship of the desert”.

    “What have camels and horses to do with graphic design?” I hear you ask. Well, very little is the honest answer. I want to talk about the involvement of committees in the creative process and it just seemed like a good introduction.

    With graphic design and more particularly branding and corporate identity, things work a little differently to natural selection and evolution. Although sometimes it might seem not as quickly.

    Often a client will tell us they want a distinctive logo that stands out and shows their individuality (I do shudder whenever a client uses the words eye-catching, so please don’t). However, in my experience, the involvement of a committee can have the effect of creating bland results – knocking off those corners and ironing out the features that offer that distinction. Imagine a world where everyone had perfect proportions, perfect teeth, a perfect face, perfect complexion, etc. Nobody would be memorable and no-one would stand out from the crowd. Because committees work by consensus, they don’t tend to take the distinctive option, unless a member has the skills to really force something through. That can happen, but it’s fair to say it’s rare.

    Often when working on logo design, we will start with a “scatter gun” approach where several designs are suggested, one of which the client should select. This we would then develop further and a logo would evolve. However, what sometimes happens – particularly when a committee or group of people is concerned – is we are asked to see what it looks like if we take the lettering from logo A, the icon from logo B and the colour from logo C and put them together. Sometimes this can work, but more often it can make the brand confused and messy. However the committee will look at their minutes, check it against what we have done and the box will be ticked. 

    Sometimes a designer will hedge their bets and, as well as distinctive, creative, energetic designs, they might offer a ‘safe’ option. Hoping that the client will go for one of the funky ones but knowing they will almost certainly go for the conservative option. Being pragmatic (I have to make a living) and diplomatic, sometimes it is hard to fight these issues and the designer will feel pressured to just do it and get the invoice in.

     

    What’s the answer?

    In my view, it’s about responsibility. I’ve worked on a number of committees and for countless clients and best results are always obtained when FEWER people are directly involved. Committees work best when individuals are given clear responsibilities and have the trust in other members to see their own responsibilities through. 

    So the approach I would recommend is to make use of a sub-committee of no more than three who will take responsibility to formulate a brief and sell that in to the committee and get agreement. They can then give the designer a clear, well-defined brief. The sub-committee can decide whether the designer has met the considerations of that brief with their designs and, if not, get them to adjust the work accordingly and re-present.

    Don’t offer too many options! I would recommend the sub committee just show their preferred choice to the main committee almost as fait accompli and ONLY show other options if there are genuine solid objections.

     

    Great clear camel headshot

    Opinions

    Everyone has an opinion on a logo but actually what’s important is not whether you like it or not, it’s:

    1) Is it distinctive? 

    2) Is it offensive? 

    3) Does it clash directly with the image we want to put across? 

    and 

    4) Is it distinctive?

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