Every big idea began as a theory

Gold
VERIFIED

Theory SF is creative agency founded with the belief that all brands have an eternal truth -a story to be told in a compelling and relevant way. From how the consumer is first approached by the brand identity to well thought-out social executions to what the package looks like on the shelf. They all need to work in harmony to shape and form a lasting impression that demands a following.

The agency is led by two partners, although very little “leading” is actually needed herebecause the place is swimming with smart, ambitious, funny, hardworking, and extremelytalented people. Because we’re still young, many folks we meet are a little surprised by the experience of our staff and the list of world-class brands we work with. This success may be attributed to our intense desire, from the day we launched, not to follow anyone’s prescribed rules or industry standards (an innovative, world-class creative agency can only stay that way by continually challenging the status quo).

That’s why it’s always difficult to answer the inevitable question that pops up during a courtship: “So who is Theory SF, and what do you do?” The truth is, we are different things to different people. Who we were a year ago is not who we are today. And who we are today will surely not be who we are a year from now.
We know it would be easier for everyone if we could fit into one of the traditional agencybuckets (brand strategy, advertising, design, interactive, direct marketing, and so on), but there is nothing traditional about how we approach what we do. And these days, there is nothing traditional about how people connect with brands or consume information. That’s why our work, inevitably, goes much deeper than any one discipline. It falls somewhere within the complex interplay that occurs between a product and a brand, between a brand and a consumer, and between a consumer and a culture.

 
$25,000+
 
$150 - $199 / hr
 
2 - 9
 Founded
2015
Show all +
San Francisco, CA
headquarters
  • 500 Montgomery St
    San Francisco , CA 94111
    United States

Portfolio

Key clients: 

NetGear, Riverbed Technology, Sage Software, Holonis, Usurance, Forevercar.com, Avast Internet Security, HMA,  SF Museum of Modern Art, EcoTerra, Forge, Spark and a few others.

Reviews

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Branding and Marketing Strategy for Educational Nonprofit

“SF Theory produces top-quality, out-of-the-box designs—we're very happy with them across the board.”

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

SF Theory is leading a complete rebranding and marketing strategy for the company, providing designs for a new name, logo, tagline, and signage.

The Reviewer
 
50-100 Employees
 
Hopland, California
Executive Director, Solar Living Institute
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

SF Theory continues to be a great partner to collaborate with, providing high quality rebranding materials. Understanding, attentive, and good-humored, their proactive approach to projects sets them apart. They ensure team members are happy and comfortable as they evolve the brand.

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 director at the Solar Living Institute, a 12-acre campus that provides eco-lodging, workshops, classes, and events.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with SF Theory?

After about 40 years of business, we decided it was time to refresh our brand, so we were looking for a vendor to help with the rebranding and a marketing strategy.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Initially, SF Theory completed some fact-finding surveys on our target audience. Then, they redesigned our name, logo, and tagline. They're now starting to help design and produce signage, including roadside billboards and other collateral.

What is the team composition?

We primarily work with Russell (Co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer, SF Theory), as well as Chip (Co-founder and Chief Creative Officer) when it comes to designs.

How did you come to work with SF Theory?

One of our county tourism agencies had worked with them on their initial strategy  and I sat in on that session a while back. When it came time to do this project, I recalled that experience and how well SF Theory managed that job. I liked that they asked good questions and were attentive to deadlines.

How much have you invested with them?

We've invested between $10,000–$15,000 thus far, but I believe our full contract is for $25,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with them in February 2018 and the work is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

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

SF Theory produces top-quality, out-of-the-box designs—we're very happy with them across the board. Their team has also been great about working closely with our owner, ensuring that he's both happy and comfortable as we make changes to a brand he's become accustomed to for many years.

How did SF Theory perform from a project management standpoint?

They're good at staying on task and on budget, navigating the nuances of working with our team from both a highly creative and professional level. Russell and Chip complement each other well; their team is carefully choreographed. They deliver on their promises, while maintaining a consistent standard of excellence and professionalism.

What did you find most impressive about them?

I appreciate their balance of professionalism with their great sense of humor. When you're getting deep into the work, that goes a long way. They've lit up the room on many occasions and I think we've been able to accomplish more as a result of their attitude.

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

Branding Project For Tourism Organization

"We are not a big client but we get the full measure of their passion."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
Feb. 2017 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Theory SF used complex data to craft brand identity and messaging. They designed a website, developed marketing materials, and conducted market testing. 

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Fort Bragg, California
Alan Humason
Executive Director, Visit Mendocino County
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Although the website redesign was not complete, the new marketing platform had generated considerable interest and conversions. Theory SF impressed with their proactive approach and graciously collaborative attitude. Their enthusiasm for the project was obvious. 

The client submitted this review online.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your company and your position there.

Visit Mendocino County is a leading Destination Marketing Organization (DMO), promoting tourism to this North Coast county and its various communities. As Executive Director, I manage the day-to-day operations of the business and direct the overall course of the organization.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

For what projects/services did your company hire Theory SF?

We asked TSF to undertake a market study and subsequent creative development to help determine and secure our best future positioning, brand identity, and messaging. We engaged them as a full-service marketing company, and collaborated with them to develop advertisements and marketing materials, redesign our website, and complete other tasks under the overall project umbrella.

What were your goals for this project?

Our goal was to find the most appropriate look, feel, and voice for making Mendocino a top-of-mind destination for travelers in our target markets. We also wanted to drive conversions by generating keen interest in our destination.

SOLUTION

How did you select this vendor?

We issued a detailed RFP to several potential vendors, then selected TSF for presentations and interviews along with three others. In the end, they won the job.

Describe the scope of their work in detail.

The TSF team spent considerable time in Mendocino County talking with staff, board members, stakeholders, businesspeople, and actual visitors, while compiling information, gauging impressions, and analyzing available data. They completed intercepts outside of the county, measuring of our level of awareness beyond our borders.

They offered suggestions for taglines and marketing platforms. Once these had been narrowed, they conducted in-market testing to make final, data-based recommendations. They developed creative concepts, received collaborative input, and determined a final direction for the company.

What was the team composition?

The team consisted of TSF members, senior staff at VMC, input from the VMC Marketing Committee, and ultimately the Board of Directors.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Can you share any outcomes from the project that demonstrate progress or success?

It's a little too soon to tell. The website is being redesigned and should be ready for launch in late March. However, other work tangential to the project has been excellent. A current promotional campaign is generating great impressions, click-through rates, and conversions. We couldn't be happier.

How effective was the workflow between your team and theirs?

The dialogue has been dynamic, free-flowing, and frequent, with emails, phone calls, and numerous personal meetings. We have developed a great mutual respect and appreciation.

What did you find most impressive about this company?

Their intelligence, resourcefulness, elan, and enthusiasm for the work and for the destination. We are not a big client but we get the full measure of their passion and creativity, and that means a lot to us.

Are there any areas for improvement?

I 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
Verification

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Verification Level
Gold
VERIFIED
Business Entity
Status
Active
Jurisdiction of Formation
California
ID
201502010037
Date of Formation
Jan 16, 2015
Source
California Secretary of State
Last Updated
Feb 1, 2019
Payment & Legal Filings
Bankruptcy
No
Tax Lien Filings
0
Judgement Filings
0
Collections Count
0
Last Updated
Jul 22, 2019
Client Reviews
VERIFIED CLIENT REVIEWS
12
OVERALL REVIEW RATING
4.9
Source
Clutch
LAST UPDATED
May 10, 2019