Consultative, collaborative, creative

Bronze
VERIFIED

A boutique design and development studio based in Midtown Manhattan. A close-knit, collaborative five-person team, we specialize in UX and product design, designing visual identities for brands, and designing/building sites on WordPress (we build custom themes).

 
$10,000+
 
$150 - $199 / hr
 
2 - 9
 Founded
2014
Show all +
New York, NY
headquarters
  • 252 W. 38th Street Suite 1203
    New York, NY 10018
    United States

Portfolio

Key clients: 

NaNoWriMo, OK! Magazine, MM.LaFleur, Document Journal, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, National Center for Science Education, 3D Robotics, Orchard Platform, EVEN Financial, SquareFoot, US Magazine, AdTheorent, SocialCode, Sailthru, American Lawyer Media, Haven Life, Gensler, SAA|EVI, Hodara Real Estate, Haven Life, Joan Ganz Cooney Center, New America, Sempre Health, PromoteIQ, Conde Nast, Ecology Project International

OK! Magazine Redesign

Studio Simpatico partnered closely with the in-house teams at OK! Magazine to identify the specific goals of the redesign. To kick off the engagement, we conducted a two-week discovery deep dive that included an analysis of the existing site’s analytics, an immersion into the brand’s digital and print properties, and comprehensive interviews with stakeholders across editorial, product, audience development, engineering,

monetization, and sales teams.

We distilled our findings into a few primary goals: Improve the overall user experience for readers. Creative more desirable products to attract high-end advertisers. Improve recirculation and pages per visit. Resurrect the original, celeb-positive brand of OK!

The site launched on November 15. Thanks to the improved design, the OK! sales team was able to land a launch sponsorship of the OK! Reality channel with MTV, and the user experience dramatically improved with this streamlined approach: Since launch, the site experienced a dramatic 54% decrease in bounce rate, 55% increase in pages per session, and 40% increase in average session duration.

NaNoWriMo Product and Website Redesign

NaNoWriMo began as a grassroots community of writers aiming to write a novel in the month of November; it’s now a full-fledged nonprofit organization that supports a variety of programs, including an online goal tracking platform and community. NaNo came to us looking for an update to their beloved, but outdated, platform and website.

The first page in the story was written with a week-long stakeholder interview and

brainstorm session in Berkeley. Simpatico worked with their team to define what they currently were and what they wanted it to be. We drew inspiration from our favorite books, their history, and even fitness apps—a new twist on their goal-oriented brand. Through careful hybridization of modern design cues with the pleasantly-dusty calm of a familiar library, we reached visual harmony they were looking for. It looks how an old book on a new desk smells. The new NaNo demanded more from its site. Users would be planning events year round, and writing more on mobile devices and spending more time interacting with one another on the site. All of this functionality was scoped, built and optimized by Simpatico with a careful eye toward maintaining the core experience. UX, site architecture and copy were optimized for intuitive navigation, and new functions were added where needed. The successful partnership spun off an additional page: a marketing site. The refreshed look and feel extended seamlessly to this digital front door, completing their digital renovation.

Both the marketing site and new product design are currently in development.

Hadfield, Stieben & Doutt

We worked closely with the partners at Hadfield, Stieben & Doutt to design and develop a content-rich, visually striking online presence for the Fort Collins, Colorado personal injury law firm.

Ten To One Rum

A contemporary and elevated blend, created to challenge expectations and reinvigorate the way people taste, experience, and talk about rum. Studio Simpatico worked closely with the TTO founders and the inspirational design team at Studio Institute to build the brand's marketing website on WordPress.

Effectual Website Redesign

Although a new company, Effectual’s team consists of highly experienced, accomplished IT professionals who thrive on problem solving. Effectual needed a website to clearly demonstrate their experience and insider industry knowledge. Simultaneously, they had to reinforce their partnership-oriented engagements with their clients, and their agile, dynamic approach to problem solving. We knew the existing Effectual brand needed a
refresh to align the business with the dynamic and shifting world of cloud technology. At the same time, we wanted to retain recognizable and widely-used design elements like their logo and the deep, rich, purple. We did not want to rely solely on photography throughout the website; despite high-quality, convincing images, abstract concepts like partnerships, business goals, and cloud technology can be difficult to convey in photography. We instead turned to the brand, extracting a key element from the logomark. Using the triangle, which serves as the top and bottom arms of their logomark, we created a series of patterns consisting of floating yet similar shapes. Structured yet adaptive-just like Effectual’s approach to problem solving. This approach allows Effectual to have an impact on a vast range of verticals. To visualize this, we began to incorporate Effectual’s triangles in a series of cityscape and business architecture photos, layering them in front and weaving them behind the subjects of the image. The result was a visual construct where any instance of triangles in a photo came to represent Effectual’s influence.

Sarah Cooper Personal Brand Website

Sarah Cooper is a former Googler-turned-writer, comedian, and speaker. She’s the voice and doodler behind The Cooper Review, a satirical online publication about the corporate environment. Turning quips to novels, Sarah’s published several books. In a recent collaboration, she’s joined a team of writers to help complete a musical. With the amassed popularity and a growing platform, Sarah hired us to design an all-in-one

personal brand website.

The design of the website centers around Scott Kline's photography — bright, vibrant images with a pow, indicative of Sarah’s dynamic personality. The overall mood highlights Sarah’s cheeky tone marrying seemingly standard corporate vibes with refreshing doses of comedic relief. We derived the color palette for the website from these photos and expanded it across the entire site design.

For sites that highlight a solopreneur, it’s important that it represents them. From the copy to the design, all stay true to Sarah’s personality. Sections like the about page (‘Show Me The Life Story’) and brand accolades (‘Here Are Some Logos’) are sarcastically named as a call out to the common, yet boring, brand brag. It is a stark contrast to the usual call to action which is often “Show More” or “Learn More”. The contact page also shares this humor with a lighthearted disclaimer often seen on personal brand websites.

The final website (built on WordPress) is a dynamic one-stop-shop inviting readers to stay connected and up to date on all things Sarah Cooper.

SAA|EVI Visual Identity

David Alexander of SA&A and Ernst Valery of EVI have been working together for decades, doing business together as two separate entities. The nature of the relationship had been a partnership for years, but clients and colleagues were confused by the different entities. It was finally time for them to join as one name and brand. They came to us in early 2017 to create a new visual identity to represent the merged company,

and a website to share information about the company and current/past projects. In addition to defining the brand and digital presence, they were looking for a partner to provide ongoing support for needed collateral (business cards, digital brochures, email templates, etc.)

During our discovery process, we learned about the principals’ shared commitment to affordable housing. For the creative team, this brought to mind an old fable of Aesop’s in which a man is, with no effort at all, able to break a single stick. However, when a collection of sticks are woven together, he is no longer able to break them. We used this story as a metaphor to guide the creation of a logo: a wreath glyph that represents that in unity, communities are stronger together.

Sweet Origins Visual Identity

Sweet Origins is a boutique tropical importing company. The founder of Sweet Origins built his company around a single premise: to import the highest quality ingredients. While the products are premium, the brand needed to be approachable, like a small business with strong ties to growing and harvesting fruits and vegetables. Lastly, there was the possibility that Sweet Origins would move toward selling packaged products direct

to consumers, so the visual identity needed to accommodate such growth in the future.

During discovery, we learned more about the regions that Sweet Origins imports quality ingredients from: tropical areas with groves of tall, healthy palm trees. We also knew that palms are a common visual element in the tropical food and beverage industry. To make sure our logo was unique, we opted for a highly stylized depiction of palms, circling each other to create a badge—a logo style we found to be appropriate for a premium and modern, yet authentic business.

We wanted to bring an additional level of authenticity and approachability. While we decided on aquamarine as the primary brand color, the logo could adopt the colors of the fruits that Sweet Origins is currently most involved with—green coconuts, açai berries, watermelons, and dragonfruit. In our style guide, we dictated when these colors could be used to make sure all future assets stay on brand.

Brooklyn Botanic Garden Website Redesign

The Brooklyn Botanic Garden came to us looking for a partner to provide a fresh, modern redesign for their nonprofit web presence, as well as front-end development code for implementation.

The Brooklyn Botanic Garden was looking for a look and feel that would match their print brand, but also would feel more modern and cleaner so it looked appropriate on the web. We worked within the existing BBG brand guidelines,

using Kievit (their signature typeface) and several colors from their palette that we found translated well to the Web.

Fireblocks

Simpatico partnered with cryptosecurity startup Fireblocks to design and develop their marketing website and printed marketing collateral in conjunction with their large-scale PR launch in June 2019.

Reviews

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Web Dev & Design for Botanic Garden Nonprofit

"They were incredibly easy ... I had a great experience working with them."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Less than $10,000
 
Jan. - May 2015
Project summary: 

Studio Simpatico redesigned a website for a nonprofit that kept and maintained a botanical garden open to the public. The nonprofit wanted a responsive design that highlighted the aesthetics of their business.

The Reviewer
 
201-500 Employees
 
Brooklyn, New York
Ruiyan Xu
Assistant Director of Digital Media, Brooklyn Botanic Garden
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The response to the site from users and stakeholders has been overwhelmingly positive. Since the redesign, time spent on the site has increased per user. Studio Simpatico understood the vision of the nonprofit and translated it into an improved website that keeps users engaged.

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the assistant director of digital media at Brooklyn Botanic Garden. There are 400-500 employees.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Studio Simpatico?

We were looking to redesign our website, BBG.org, to make it a responsive and beautiful website on a limited budget. We had a different developer for the original website.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We wanted the new website to be responsive, unlike the old website. We also wanted to highlight the beautiful photographs we have of the garden and we wanted to create a smooth user experience. We tasked Studio Simpatico with all of these things. It’s a promotional website. The component that Studio Simpatico worked on did not involve e-commerce. They only created the design and frontend of our site and then we had an internal developer work on the backend. We run it on a CMS called ExpressionEngine. In May or June 2015, they handed files over to us and the frontend, the CSS, the HTML, and then we did the build from June through November.

What is the team dynamic?

We worked with Tamara [Founder, Studio Simpatico] on the design and frontend development of BBG.org. She was a fantastic partner. She was excellent at communicating with us and our stakeholders and very responsive and quick with all her communications to us. She really understood our goals and really created a wonderful design for our site.

How did you come to work with Studio Simpatico?

We put out a request for proposals and they came to us through a friend’s recommendation. One of our internal team members had known Tamara [Founder, Studio Simpatico] before in another job. We looked at 4-6 different design firms.

How much have you invested with them?

Under $10,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in January 2015 until May 2015.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

Anecdotally our users and stakeholders, through emails and conversations, at our institution have all been really pleased with the redesign of the website. It’s provided an easier path for our users to get to key information. Our stakeholders love how it features photographs and the look and feel of it. In terms of analytics, we had a certain set of goals that we wanted to hit on the redesigns like getting our users to engage more deeply on the site especially when they’re on mobile. A big goal was to get mobile users to stay longer and we definitely saw a significant increase in time spent on the site for mobile users. In terms of the work that Studio Simpatico gave us, it was very rare, if ever, that there were bugs. It was all very accurate.

How did Studio Simpatico perform from a project management standpoint?

They performed excellently. The turnaround for when I had asked for fixes or new components, the site was incredibly fast. Tamara [Founder, Studio Simpatico] was very communicative and always made herself available by email and via phone. From a project management perspective, it ran very, very smoothly and was one of the best projects. I’ve been on teams for multiple redesigns and this was definitely one of the best experiences with a vendor that I’ve ever had. We used Basecamp for a lot of project management. We used Google Docs for providing background information, context, and document exchanges. Tamara [Founder, Studio Simpatico] also used a tool that I don’t remember the name of where it was very easy to set up times to talk to her about questions or concerns.

What did you find most impressive about them?

One of the outstanding things about them is that they are very responsive to the client and to the user. I’ve worked in the past with other design firms where the designers come in with a very clear idea of their aesthetic and their vision, which doesn’t always work well with the client’s needs. This was outstanding and refreshing in the sense that they came in very responsive to the client’s brand and aesthetic, and to the user experience. All design flowed out from that. That was an excellent aspect of working with them. Another was communication. They were incredibly easy. It was a pleasure to communicate with them, which from my experience, is a little bit unusual. I highly recommend them. I had a great experience working with them.

Are there any areas they could improve?

I really can’t think of any.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I have referred them to a colleague already. That colleague ended up having a great experience with them.

Web Dev for Tech Marketing Firm

"They are able to move really quickly but also maintain quality."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Jul. - Aug. 2015
Project summary: 

Studio Simpatico rebuilt and redesigned a Wordpress website for a technology marketing firm. They continue to provide development support. 

The Reviewer
 
201-500 Employees
 
New York, New York
Ashley La Fond
Head of Marketing, SocialCode
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Studio Simpatico provided a very clean and visually appealing design for the new site. They are able to make changes and edits on the fly, without much notice upfront from the client. The two continue to partner on projects.

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

My name is Ashley La Fond and I am the Head of Marketing for SocialCode. SocialCode is an audience-first marketing partner built to drive results through media activation. We combine audience data, insights, content creation and measurement to drive unmatched ROI from digital campaigns.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Studio Simpatico?

Our biggest challenge was to find a partner who could scale with us. We had limited in-house resources so we needed a full service partner for initial website development, as well as someone that can provide continued support over time. We also needed a partner that understood our needs and could react quickly. In the past, we have worked with other agencies where project managers lack technical expertise, so a lot of the details got lost in translation. By the time development work was delivered, it would be completely different from what we originally scoped, and have taken double the amount of time.

 

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Studio Simpatco started with some small scale updates to our initial site, then we worked with them on a full scale rebuild. Because Tamara (project lead) is a developer, she is able to quickly understand what we are looking for, and has the know-how to build it. She also takes a much more turn-key approach to development. Rather than reinventing the wheel – she is able to recommend best practices when exploring new layouts, features or functionality.

What is the team dynamic?

We interact directly with Tamara. Depending on the scope of the project, she may also bring in a designer.

How did you come to work with Studio Simpatico?

Tamara was referred to us. Somebody knew Tamara from her past life and introduced her to us.

What is the status of this engagement?

Our first engagement began in the summer of 2015. Since then, we have done regular updates – sometimes monthly. So, it’s an ongoing relationship.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

We have gotten a lot of good feedback that the front-end clean and easy to navigate. On the backend the CMS is very user friendly – its built so its very easy for us to access and update content and make small changes on our own.

How did Studio Simpatico perform from a project management standpoint?

Studio Simpatico is incredibly organized. They are really good at scoping out a project, understanding what we need, and being able to move really quickly. They use basecamp to keep all stakeholders and assets organized around a project

What did you find most impressive about them?

Speed. They are able to move really quickly but also maintain quality. They implement just the right amount of process, project management, and production so we’re organized but can move quickly and efficiently.

Are there any areas they could improve?

Honestly, no - we have been so happy with our partnership. Of all the things that my team does, [web development] is the one area that I always feel very confident about, because we have such a good partner.

5.0
Overall Score I would recommend her wholeheartedly to anybody.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Web Redesign for Drone Software Company

"Everything Studio Simpatico did was flawless."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Mar. - Apr. 2017
Project summary: 

Studio Simpatico rebuilt a Wordpress website for a drone software company. The company wanted a site that could keep up with their content production.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Berkeley, California
Former Product Marketing Manager, Drone Software Company
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Studio Simpatico's expertise in Wordpress development made the rebuild process painless. The client loved the simplicity of Studio Simpatico's work, and their ability to lay out each decision and the rationale behind it.

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I was a product marketing manager at a drone software company.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Studio Simpatico?

Our website was, at one point, built on WordPress, but we then switched to a Ruby on Rails application. Because of technical limitations, the Ruby website was stalling our content production. We wanted to find a company to do nothing except turn our existing Ruby app into a WordPress website with no redesign.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We requested them to completely refactor our site but make it look exactly the same and with the principle that it would be easily updatable. We wanted it done in a three-week timeline, a pretty aggressive goal, but Studio Simpatico confirmed that three weeks would be doable.

What is the team dynamic?

We only worked with the founder, Tamara Olson, to develop and execute the project.

How did you come to work with Studio Simpatico?

We received several referrals, but all of them wanted to work on more technically challenging projects, and we were just looking for somebody who saw the simple project for what it was, so I decided to search LinkedIn and found Studio Simpatico there.

How much have you invested with them?

$10,000 to $15,000

What is the status of this engagement?

We were involved with her in March and April of this year. The initial project was three weeks, but we worked with her on another project moving our blog from Medium onto a WordPress platform to make it native.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

Everything Studio Simpatico did was flawless. She hit it out of the park in terms of both making the right decision and consulting us when she felt like we should be in on the decision

How did Studio Simpatico perform from a project management standpoint?

When Tamara had to make a medium- to large-sized technical decision, she would come to us, give us the options, and let us choose which route to take. She hit every deadline, and even helped us on our side when we were behind on deadlines.

We used Basecamp as a project management tool.

What did you find most impressive about them?

She had a commitment to self-service and left us in a position where we could do everything that wasn’t WordPress development. She really understood our concerns about WordPress upfront and knew the limitations and was very clear about them. My favorite part of working with her was the commitment to simplicity she had. She didn’t overcomplicate things, so we didn’t have to worry about her bringing us a lot of new, creative ideas until after we had done the initial project.

Are there any areas they could improve?

No, everything she did and every communication with us was flawless.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Web Development for Financial Tech Startup

"They’re flexible, and if something can’t be done, they notify us."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Confidential
 
2015 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Studio Simpatico entered into the engagement by referral. They overhauled a WordPress website, including backend contact data management. They later refreshed the website and are involved in ongoing projects.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
New York, New York
Creative Director, Financial Tech Startup
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The website works seamlessly, with no bugs or user issues reported. Studio Simpatico’s flexibility, organization, quick response times, and up-front communication make them a dependable development partner.

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I am the creative director of a financial tech startup.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Studio Simpatico?

We needed to undertake a big website overhaul. The previous version had been built by another company in WordPress, so we wanted someone who was handy in that space.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Studio Simpatico worked on our promotional site. The team built it from from scratch using WordPress. We collect contact information from users who download our papers, so the site’s framework for storing and managing a contact list was important.

What is the team dynamic?

At the time, Studio Simpatico was still a pretty small company. So I dealt with only one person, the main proprietor.

How did you come to work with Studio Simpatico?

We received a referral from a company that had worked with Studio Simpatico’s proprietor. They had a good engagement experience and received quick turnaround on answers. We didn’t look at any other vendors.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with Studio Simpatico around 2 years ago, and are engaged in ongoing projects. We used them for the refresh of the original website we built with the team.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

The site works seamlessly, and we haven’t found any issues with it. We haven’t heard anything from users, but I consider that a good thing. We haven’t experienced any bugs.

How did Studio Simpatico perform from a project management standpoint?

We use their instance of Basecamp to communicate with Studio Simpatico. They’ve helped us set up a schedule detailing when things are due on our end and theirs. They’ve been pretty good about keeping things on schedule. They respond within a day.

What did you find most impressive about them?

They’re flexible, and if something can’t be done, they notify us. If something is not a vendor’s core competency, it behooves them to tell us about it. Studio Simpatico has been good in this regard.

Are there any areas they could improve?

No.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    I’ve never heard about issues with their estimates or invoices, but I’m in marketing.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
Verification

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Verification Level
Bronze
VERIFIED
Business Entity
Status
Active
Jurisdiction of Formation
New York
ID
4787076
Date of Formation
Jul 9, 2015
Last Updated
Mar 1, 2019
Client Reviews
VERIFIED CLIENT REVIEWS
14
OVERALL REVIEW RATING
5.0
Source
Clutch
LAST UPDATED
July 12, 2019