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Situation: The Market Research Agency that had been analysing the funeral marketplace for Ian Hazel Funerals selected local design agencies in Sutton, which would be suitable to work alongside the already established family run funeral business to help them promote the business. This involved an initial consultation with FMC to find out what Ian Hazel Funeral’s requirements were.
Outputs: Logo Design, Letterhead, business card, invoice and envelope design, brochure design, folder design, logo for uniforms design, advertisement design, online promotions, Facebook Page Design, Search Engine optimisation and website management, Bereavement Group website design, promotional literature and leaflet design.
I was presented with an extensive document covering the findings of their market research and the important details of this were explained to me. They had discovered that they were potentially losing 30% of customers to local rival business A Hazel Funerals which was formed when part of the family business sold in 1987 this had highlighted the need for a new brand identity to help distinguish the business from it’s competitor and gain repeat recognition from local, potential customers.
After this meeting with the market research company I was asked to commit to a date to present my brand ideas to the owner of the business Ian Hazel.
My initial research into the company involved refining the important information from the extensive market research document, collating marketing materials from existing funerals to discover the styling and visuals they were using to promote this sensitive area of retail business.
Then, the creative ideas began, initially with sketches on paper then developing these ideas on the computer creating digitally drawn visuals in Illustrator representing the care, quality and independence of the business.
In creating the ideas we believe best fit the brief we’ve been given on the computer, we are able to see which ones will work best as a final solution across the required media and marketing materials.
Alongside the visual ideas I created a presentation document to highlight our understanding and the key elements of the brief. This contained our objectives, what the outputs would be for the client and who the team members were that would be collaborating and working on this project, a schedule detailing what would be done and by when to meet the client’s deadline, examples of relevant work we had already created for existing clients with testimonials, a brief explanation of our best ideas so far, what our thoughts were behind those ideas, how we’d see them working across all communications and the ‘mint process’ we use to create all our design work.
Accompanying the presentation document was a breakdown of our charges for each required element and an A3 booklet containing visuals and ideas in their ‘outline’ stages for discussion and input from the client.
At this meeting Ian Hazel reflected upon the ideas and imagery he saw as most suitable to represent his family run business and further ideas, which he thought, would work across his stationery, signage, brochures, advertisements, company uniforms etc.
Further visuals were created and enhanced over the following weeks to fit the newly refined criteria and these were presented at second and third meetings with Ian Hazel.
The final result for Ian Hazel’s brand was a soft and flowing font – almost like handwriting to represent the ‘down to earth’ friendliness of the company. The chosen font used in gold where possible or a bright yellow also has a polished, elegant feel, which I felt suitably represented the high quality of the business represented by the staff and their overall service. It was also decided to include the descriptor lien of ‘a family business since 1987’ and an accompanying emblem of two hands holding/supporting each other along, again in gold with the company strapline “Holding your hand every step of the way”.
We then started creating letterhead layouts, invoice templates, business cards, envelope branding and styling the look of the website, which was to be an online brochure for the company. Reflecting their core values and a helpful source of information on what to do when someone dies, providing useful contact information for flower arrangements, venues and alternative ideas and inspiration for more tailored funerals such as eco friendly or a motorcycle hearse vehicle, making it an easy process for visitors to plan a funeral and cover all the legalities involved when a loved one passes away….fully representing their strapline that they truly are ‘holding your hand every step of the way’
Situation: Ivor Parnham are a family run concrete and structural repairs specialist. based in Leicestershire.
Outputs: Logo Refresh, Business Card Design, Digital Stationery Design, Website Design and Build, Search Engine Optimisation, Social Media Training
Click here to view the website: www.ivorparnham.co.uk
"Pam is a great trainer on Social Media - explains until it's gone in"
We were referred to Ivor Parnham Building Services through a regular networking group we have been a member of since 2011. The member had been asked to recommend a website company and although that person uses a different website company for their own business, they felt that Mint Creative would be better for them.
Upon first meeting Dave and Jackie at Ivor Parnham, I felt that they were lovely people, enthusiastic and motivated for their family run building business to succeed. They had been paying Yell.com a lot of money to advertise their business and they had been approached by Yell.com to produce a website for them. Ivor Parnham felt that Yell.com were charging a lot of money to produce their website and they weren’t happy with the website design they had been shown.
It became obvious that Jackie and Dave would prefer a more personal service and someone who could explain the technical website terms to them in a plain and clear language they understood. I gave them some advice on their existing marketing materials; ways to improve them and how to implement them. I like to visit a potential client in their place of work for the first meeting so that I can gain a full understanding of their business, how they got started and what they wanted to achieve from their website.
They asked me to provide a quotation to provide them with a website solution that they could update themselves and to assist with the leaflet they were currently mailing out to potential new customers.
Ivor Parnham were happy with our ideas defined in our Statement of Work and after paying a 50% deposit we started our discovery phase; researching their competitors, existing customers to gain a broad understanding of their current market place, what makes Ivor Parnham unique and to establish the best way to position them.
Once we were happy with the results of our research we start the creative stage and build several design layouts using Photoshop and Illustrator for their front web page and corresponding sub-page layouts to demonstrate how the menu will enable people to navigate around the website and how we envision the rest of the pages will look. This layout is then shown to the rest of the design team and the web programmers who suggest further developments to make the build process and customer experience as simple as possible.
It is at this stage once the developments have been completed that Ivor Parnham are presented with the visual. This is usually in a face-to-face meeting, where timeframes will allow, so refinements can be discussed and ideas developed to ensure that they are happy with the styling of the web pages and it matches their objectives. It’s easier for us to make changes at this stage when the design is flat rather than further down the line when the web programmer starts the build process adding in required coding and coded style sheets to suit the chosen layouts.
For years they haven’t had much high street competition but they realised that there was an increasing demand for online footwear sales and some of their customers travel a long way to purchase from them.
They came to us in 2012 from a recommendation from their print supplier and asked us to provide a quote for their online sales requirements so they could sell Padders shoes alongside their current sales from their retail shop.
Outputs: Online shop website design, Search Engine Optimisation.
Client Feedback: "I have to say that I love it. Everything is as clean & concise as I'd envisaged The website certainly attracts more visitors to the shop which more than justifies what we pay for search engine optimisation." Hopkins Shoes, Wylde Green Sutton Coldfield
After an initial meeting to discuss the requirements of the website and we had sent our 'Statement of Work' we got the go ahead from Hopkins Shoes, we started looking at the background of the brands they supply as well as their competitors. From understanding their current marketplace and what made them different we began creating design ideas for the website. They already had an existing brand they used on their shop front and on plastic bags that are given when shoes are purchased so this had to be taken into account. We felt that their current logo in black needed to change slightly for web use in keeping with the brands they sell. It was decided that a brown tone would work well, representing the quality leather shoes they sold and would work better with the cream, brown and white colour scheme we had created for their online shop.
Our client liked the layout and got lots of positive feedback from existing footwear suppliers that it was a modern style that accurately represented the quality of footwear and in addition would be pleasing for their audience and new customers visiting the website.
Once the main pages of the website were in place and our client supplied the text and photographic images for the information pages of the website we were able to fill out the pages with appropriate content.
The shoe products themselves were sent to us as a CD of images and an excel spreadsheet of product information, prices and sizes. This information was added to the back end, content management system and the appropriate images uploaded for customers to view.
With a content management system on the back of the website the client is able to update and modify all the text, images and products on the website whenever they want to. However we ended up completing the product, updates and website information for the client in this case as their shop is constantly busy and they couldn't find the time to do it themselves.
We had been recommended to CCT from the printer that they already used to design and produce their brochures and stationery. CCT had been talking to a couple of other companies about having a website redesigned but had felt that these companies were offering a set solution that was inflexible and overpriced.
Outputs: Website, Facebook Business Page Design, Twitter Page Design
Click here to view the website: www.centralconstructiontraining.co.uk
In planning for the quotation, we laid out a sitemap for all the courses and information required, we discovered that the amount of pages required was much more than their original estimation, upon querying this and to fit their budget it was agreed to cut the number of pages down. The final site plan set out how the viewers would navigate around the website to find the information they require. The key elements to this being a success was to have a link back to the home page on every page, a sub menu to appear on all pages after the front page, contact information to be prominent and a suitable search facility so all information can be found easily.
The client had provided a list of competing construction training companies as well as companies they aspire to be like, so I had some good source points to get a feel for the construction industry, extract the good points/ideas for content and dismiss anything I felt was irrelevant or not required. We looked into the construction Training market place to see what others offering on their website and how they provided information for their potential trainees.
The client provided a sketch of how they wanted the front page to look, which we used as a basis for our design, styling individual social media and contact icons to fit
The team at Central Construction Training loved our design with a few amendments to the button titles and text, we started to export the graphics and build the front page. Whilst this was under construction, we created a sub page layout to give the client a feel for what the page content would look like after the viewer has entered the website and how we intended to break up the text with subtitles, links for further information, graphics and photographs.
Text was emailed to us from Central Construction Training for each page as separate Word documents, this made it easy for us to know what information was to go on each page. We suggested relevant Stock images, which would pad out the tailored illustrations and the ones to be provided from a photo shoot after their new construction training centre had been built.
The client loved our sub page visual and our styling of the graphics for that page so this design was created for each of the sub pages on the website. We then started adding the content.
At this stage we are constantly testing the website and improving anything we feel would enhance the user’s experience or improve the look of a page.
The website went live as soon as the client was happy with the content, google analytics is added so the website’s performance, future marketing campaigns and how people are finding the website can be monitored.