Blog : Strategy

Behind the Scenes at the Opus Video Shoot

Behind the Scenes at the Opus Video Shoot

One of our newest clients – Opus Artisan Chocolates – creates some of the finest gourmet chocolates available on the market (some of which happen to be infused with medicinal cannabis oil). With that in mind, we needed to create a video that illustrated the artisanal, hand-crafted nature of how these chocolates are made – it really needed to cement premium brand positioning in this category. The chocolatier uses an airbrush to add texture and color. No mass production here… and we wanted to capture that.

From the storyboard concept to editing the final product, we set out to create a video highlighting the process not only in an artistic way, but one that promotes the taste appeal of the product. It needed to be easily streamed on the client’s website, as well as being used for promotional purposes for various media outlets.

We shot both stills and video over the course of three days so the final product all had the same feel.

The trio of Sean and Kristin art directing, Ken Hansen shooting, and the chocolatier chocolatier-ing, yielded an even better result than the client was hoping for.

Here are a few behind the scenes snapshots, followed by the completed video, which you can see in action at (website currently in development).

How To Create a Direct Mail Piece That Yields Results

How To Create a Direct Mail Piece That Yields Results

This is a piece we did a couple years ago, but the strength of concept is just as relevant today.

When considering a direct mail project for our clients, we always encourage audience participation with the piece we design. People are intrigued by receiving something different or unique in their mailbox. By adding an element of surprise or interaction, our direct mail is more likely to garner attention than end up immediately in the recycle bin.

This specific direct mail campign kicked off our entire brand strategy for KMA Arcitecture, asking their customers and prospects, “What If?”

First and foremost, the question “What If?” is compelling. Specifically, qeued up the way we designed the open-ended message/question. Bingo, we’ve got their attention.

Second, we encourage the reader to unseal the piece (read interact) and begin to unfold the direct mail to reveal the first part of the question we are prompting. At this point the prospect has taken interest in the piece enough to hold it, unseal it and begin to read it…

Third, our piece uses bold color blocking and concise bold copy to impart exactly what we want the reader to understand. Requiring that your prospects do absolutly no work to understand your messaging is a key tactic for maximum impact.

The piece also features little but obvious clues on how we want the reader to navigate through the key messaging for the ultimate reveal.

The reveal is effective because it builds on the momentum of the piece, and states exactly what we want our audience to understand. The reveal features an impactful pay off and call to action and imparts directly what we want the audience to understand and remember. This particular piece also encourages the participant to refold the piece back to it’s original state, reinforcing the messaging once again.

Finally and importantly, with a closer look, you will see that the piece only included a simple dieline and some recycled paper, keeping the project economical.

3 Easy Steps to Re-Brand Your Brand. Not Exactly.

3 Easy Steps to Re-Brand Your Brand. Not Exactly.

Here we answer the question that we have been getting a lot lately, how do designers rebrand their own brand?

Perhaps one of our toughest design challenges to date was the fact that our agency needed to turn the design focus on ourselves. In addition to our current client load we needed to dedicate significant time and energy to rebrand our own company. Here is a fun, open, and honest post about how we accomplished what once felt like an insurmountable task.

Note: a significant thank you to Brit Ashcraft, Philippe Barret, Audrey Doherty, and Steve Coopersmith.

  1. Absolute decision it was time to rebrand. Deciding it was time to change our tune.
    The name ideaworks advertising circa 2003 was a CD we were holding onto and we still had the jewel case. Born in the era of lower back tattoos, ideaworks still played without skipping and we had preserved the brand booklet. We all know this familiar feeling, we hold onto something that we once coveted but the time had come to retire it. Not an easy decision because although newer technology was available we were the CD and ideworks was our favorite track. Before iTunes was popular, we had founded and nurtured ideaworks as 2 young partners from the day we sat at my dining room table, to endless hours of planning and execution, launching our company and then putting in the time to guarantee its success.
  2. Concepting and creating our own name when it turns out that there are other designers with the same great ideas: the impossible URL.
    In the overall branding exercise, we created endless lists of names we liked and realized that every URL imaginable is already taken. Trust us, there is good reason that companies are naming their brands with wacky names, it’s the plain truth that almost any name we came up with was taken, trademarked and accounted for. Even the most uncommon and bizarre names we came up with (and trust us, there were many)… taken. We were focused on creating a new brand name that said something about what we offer, just like everyone else in the brand design industry.
  3. Creating a logo design, when one partner loves Star Wars and classic cars and the other loves fashion and glitter.
    Designing our own logo was an exercise in absolute creativity, diplomacy, refinement and teamwork. And please note that “teamwork” does not always imply continuous high-fives… that’s just an image on iStock or in the movies. We are designers with designer opinions creating a brand design (read near impossible task). In total I imagine that we designed 100s of options.

This post stems from a lot of people asking us how designers design for themselves. And not just design, rebranding a company that we founded, nurtured, and grew from day one. Not an easy task, I assure you. The rebranding efforts all tolled took a full six months to complete. We have the lists, sketches, cutting room material and kept a paper trail to chart our progress. Farewell to ideaworks advertising, you served us well once upon a time now we are ready to live Evertype Brand \ Design happily ever after.