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Business | Design | Marketing
Our brand story
Since coming to ICE back in December 2016, a big part of my role has been developing the agency brand. For the first month or two, while I got my creative feet under the desk so to speak, I was experimenting and getting the studio involved in giving ICE a facelift. What direction should we take? How much should we change, and how radically? What is the core personality of ICE? These were all questions we asked ourselves, before we put pen to paper or finger to mouse.
The creative process we went through to reach a consensus was revealing in itself, and over time, a tangible brand emerged – the brand we wanted to be. A strong personality formed and crystallised into something that had real substance. It’s not a quick process, especially when you’re looking inward. Which is why it helped to have my relatively fresh head involved. So often with branding, it’s the external perspective which can provide the clearest vision.
Long before I arrived on the scene, the agency had built a reputation for great design and traditional agency skills, so we wanted to reflect that in the new brand, but in recent years we’ve moved more and more into fast-moving, tech-driven digital work. So we needed to convey that sense too. In the end, the logo itself – the focal point of any brand – stands up as a great example of this blend of design tradition and cutting edge digital skills. It’s hand drawn (by my own fair hand by the way!) but with an Apple Pencil, on an iPad. We felt this was a neat little nod to our own brand vision (and it was the one logo that didn’t divide opinion!). Our brand continues to develop as we explore new ways to express our core vision. That’s the thing with brands, they’re always moving, alive with potential.
With brand, integrity is everything. It’s all about a tone of voice as well as the cosmetic things like logos and typefaces, all of which trigger emotional responses and contribute to the overall personality of a brand. For us (and anyone embarking on a brand creation or refresh) being true to the personality we’d all identified with was really important. Brand integrity is something you’ll often hear us preaching about, but for good reason. It promotes unity, passion and ultimately higher quality if every member of the team believes in the brand they’re working for. For us it’s just one chapter in our own brand story, and as our agency flourishes, I’m looking forward to seeing where that brand will go next.