If we are going to offer Branding (and rebranding) as one of our main services, we figured it was about time to take a long hard look at who we really are and how best to communicate our identity. After some deep self-reflection, countless hours spent at the local coffee shop pinging keywords off one another, and some really bad ideas – we crafted an idea for a reinvented brand that truly embodies an agency that is confident in who we are, what we do well, and what we suck at.
(Alexa, queue “This is Me” by Demi Lovato).
So, what brought on this change? On July 1st, North of Eight Design & Marketing went from being a sole-owner entity to a unique partnership between two gals with a love for marketing and the Northwoods. As Emily and I sat down to talk about what our goals and aspirations were for our agency’s future, we agreed that we were going to have to let go of some of the things we loved dearly (so long maroon & buffalo plaid…) so that we could cling more tightly to the things that were going to help us grow into a regional agency to be reckoned with.
To be honest, our brainstorming sessions were full of keywords that were kind of all over the place (I am pretty sure #CrushIt was somewhere on that list…); however, the overall tone remained solid – we’ve got you. While you’re busy running your business, you can trust us to tackle your marketing. If you’re a marketing department of one and you need some extra [wo]manpower to get your projects to the finish line, we’ve got you.
The agency world is typically embodied by skyscrapers, suits and *clackity*clack* high heels – and we are so proud of the fact that we are doing things a little differently here in the northwoods. Our small but mighty team is deeply rooted in both nature and reality.
The phrase “North of Eight” may not mean anything to some folks; but to us, it is more than just a name. It is a lifestyle that comes with living in Northern Wisconsin. It is building that trust and at-home feeling of working with friends, family and trusted members of the community.
WHO WE ARE
So now we know who we are on paper, but how do we put that to work? We get our favorite gal Lori to draft us up a brand guide. She’s wildly creative and was able to take all our word-vomit and turn it into some truly gorgeous visual branding elements. This was a great (yet painful) opportunity for Emily and I to take a step back and view the rebranding process from a client’s perspective. OUCH. It was HARD.
Our baby – well mostly Emily’s baby since I was that parent that showed up a little later in life – had to evolve into something else… That was a hard row to hoe, but SO worth it. Once we were able to let go of the old we were completely blown away with what the future of North of Eight was going to look like.
So we dived in headfirst and began the process of rebranding ourselves by ironing out all of these defining characteristics of what we believe North of Eight is and could be. Then, we started to apply those elements to each and every corner of the new website (Hot Dish, anybody?!).
Our Chief Web Developer took note of all our sporadic ideas, as well as Lori’s phenomenal brand guide, to create an absolutely stunning website that we believe truly represents the North of Eight brand. She was quite patient with us as we jumped into the backend of the website and screwed everything up multiple times; including but not limited to, Emily decision to launch the website before Donielle had a chance to optimize it for mobile view (queue Donielle’s heart attack here), and myself royally bastardizing the layout of these little square boxes from Hell. Thank you for putting up with us, Donielle.
REINTRODUCING NORTH OF EIGHT
So there you have it. The new N8 brand. Emily and I couldn’t be more proud of the team we’ve assembled here at North of Eight Design & Marketing, and we couldn’t be more excited for the future. We truly have a passion for good people and good work, and we will do whatever it takes to do a kick-ass job on your projects and then we will most likely invite you out to the bar afterward for a celebratory drink.