Big Agency Expertise; Small Agency Price
We are a small crew of former big agency branding professionals. Our bios look like many you’ve seen - we’ve worked at lots of cool branding, consulting and design firms and our client list covers much of the Fortune 500. And being small, we have no room for a “B-team”. We like to describe ourselves as the team you thought you were getting the last time you hired that big New York City firm, for half the price.
Zeteky, Quiq, Dominon Energy, DetermiNation, Chisel
This was the story of a technology company providing a critical, life-saving connection between leaders of public and private organizations and their citizens and employees - but their current name didn’t tell this story.
The client came to us with big dreams and a limiting name. Together, we arrived at the benefits the name needed to convey. Their scalable platform and suite of tailored tools were designed to enable two-way, real-time, multimedia communications. Thus, we helped them rebrand to the name Zeteky.
Atelopus Zeteki; a.k.a. the Panamanian Golden Frog is an endangered species native to the rain forests of Panama
The Zeteki is highly social and very alert to its surroundings; it is unique in its ability to communicate with sounds and gestures... It hears, sees and reacts to things most miss - supporting the “Critical Communications” brand story.
We especially liked Zeteki because the use of an animal, ironically, humanized a platform that might be seen as overly cold and technical.
The association with leaping ability – 20x its own body length! - suggested an organization making significant advancements – “leapfrogging” existing models and practices in the communications technology space.
The Zeteki is also just plain cool.
This company was flipping an enterprise-centric customer engagement model – going from company-out to customer-in.
In doing so, it liberated customers to:
- Interact with brands where they want, how they want, and when they want
- Seamlessly engage with client systems – unaware of the advanced technologies making it happen... and not caring
- Freely move from app to app as they move from their tablet to their phone – engaging with the companies in a way that feels like “real life”
Building off the brief, we established the following guidelines:
Name should be:
- Smart, sophisticated
- Cutting-edge, innovative
- Simple, approachable
- Personal and personable
Name should not be:
- Hard to pronounce, spell or use in digital space
- Limiting as to product, industry, future
The result was Quiq - coined from the word “quick”, meaning both fast as well as smart, plus “IQ” - ubiquitously connected with intelligence.
Together, this seemingly simple name supports the brand positioning as a brilliant platform that is exceedingly easy to use.
We worked with Dominion to create a brand identity and proposed naming system. We began by doing a deep dive into the existing brand architecture, product names, and plans for the future of the company.
The deliverable was a recommended naming convention, with guidelines for addressing:
- Existing Dominion Energy names
- Acquired names
- New offerings from the company
As a result of our research, we recommended that Dominion shift from calling themselves “Dominion Power” to instead use the name “Dominion Energy” for the following reasons:
- While “power” and “energy” are largely synonymous, “energy” has emerged as the default category identifier.
- Power appears to be fading from use at the service/offering level, and only remains as part of some corporate brands.
- More energy customers will begin to buy multiple forms of energy from one company – so multiple “brands” could create a confusing customer experience, especially on invoices and the like.
- Furthermore, terms such as “renewable” and ”alternative” may become less relevant as energy sources and forms evolve.
We additionally provided a comprehensive set of guidelines and an evaluation tool to be used in the naming of any future Dominion Energy products - new or acquired.
The creative direction for this name centered around a desire to highlight the role the program plays in the achievement and accomplishment of an athlete’s goals – in some ways very individual, yet also in support of a powerful cause.
We understood the drive of the athlete – both the beginner and the accomplished – to keep pushing themselves further. The endurance athlete strives for even more, reaches even higher – and is always raising the bar.
The name DetermiNation communicates how this achievement and success make the endurance athlete feel, celebrating the “I did it” moment; the “it was worth every hour in the gym, every drop of sweat, every blister” feeling - while also getting at the power of being united in support of an important cause.
"The project moved seamlessly without any delays."
StokeSignals did logo and web redesign for a full rebranding. They created a marketing message based on discovery sessions with stakeholders.
"The project moved seamlessly without any delays."
Dec 12, 2018
The rebranding has led to a 20% growth in revenue since the engagement's end. Other metrics include growth on the website since its relaunch and growth in related opportunities. Customers can expect a collaborative partner who puts the project first.
The client submitted this review online.
Please describe your company and your position there.
I am the director of business development for a global contract manufacturing company with operations in the US and around the world. My team manages marketing and is focused on growing the business.
For what projects/services did your company hire StokeSignals?
We needed a partner to assess our brand and messaging and direct us toward the right opportunities to match our high growth.
What were your goals for this project?
We wanted to update our logo and project a personal and approachable image.
How did you select this vendor?
They won over our marketing and executive sponsorship team from the first meeting. They were engaging, professional, and relatable, with an impressive list of clients. However, their accessibility and emphasis on relationships were more similar to a smaller firm, which made us feel comfortable.
Describe the scope of their work in detail.
Their discovery sessions with internal and external stakeholders led them to assess our position in the market. They provided a statement and messaging to share our story, and they redesigned our logo to fit our new message. We ended up rebranding our company, including a complete website redesign.
What was the team composition?
Our team worked exclusively with Mark (Founder, SmokeSignals).
Can you share any outcomes from the project that demonstrate progress or success?
We have seen 20% growth in revenue since our engagement with StokeSignals. Our website has grown at a significant pace since relaunch and we’ve also seen growth in inbound traffic and opportunities.
How effective was the workflow between your team and theirs?
The communication could not have been better. They were extremely accessible, answering questions and emails as quickly as we sent them. They hit every deadline they proposed and the project moved seamlessly without any delays.
What did you find most impressive about this company?
We felt like StokeSignals understood us immediately. They finished our sentences and knew where we wanted to go and how to get there. They realized the best way for us to compete was being authentic and personable. When we tried to engage on a follow-up project, they reviewed our ideas and advised we wait until we had a better plan. They were willing to forgo their own payment until we were fully committed to the investment.
Are there any areas for improvement?
No, I can't think of anything.