Brand refresh ready for  growth.

When refreshing a well-established 20 year old brand, it is critical to understand the perception that clients and the market place has. Is it something they are proud to be associated with? How unique and distinctive is it? What value does it bring to them? All too often, organisations rename, rebrand or just enhance the visual identity without a second thought about what clients think, resulting in lack of trust.

Understanding the brand position and proposition is critical for any campaign.


“Susan Anderton worked with us to depict Sprunt’s visual identity in two ways; first by reflecting our architectural style of elegance and inclusivity through striking photography of the buildings themselves, and secondly portraying our warm consultative approach by capturing our buildings in use by their publics”

Steve McGivney, Communications Director, Sprunt

Brand Positioning and Marketing Collateral


Developing the Brief: Worked closely with Executive Board meetings to put together a marketing plan which identified ways in which the practice built its profile. This involved identifying the Education sector as a key market for growth.


The Brand: To understand the core aspects and values of the brand we undertook a client listening programme. This involved the design and development of topic guides as well as carrying out confidential perception studies with key clients to understand the quality of service, value they provided, competitive strength.


The Mark and Visual Identity: Design and development of an enhanced mark, moving from a block and thick set logo to an elegant one. The colour orange was already strong, so this asset was protected and used as a primary colour across branded collateral.

Internal Engagement: Mentoring architects on ways to build the profile of the brand and the individuals; motivation programmes including Away Days to build on the brand messaging; preparation of the annual plan for internal and external readership; design and production of internal branding such as screensavers.


New Website: Concept design and brand expression for the new website, content management system, as well as writing the new content.


Brand Expression: Annual photography competitions were run with local London Universities to find some of the most innovative photographers to create the brand expression of buildings and landscape design.




Achieving growth through market penetration


This project involved identifying new market opportunities during the recession of 2007/2008. The organisation’s largest sector was residential, which was a risk at that time.


Together we identified where the immediate new business opportunities lay. After an audit of company’s strengths we identified Schools and Education, a market which was set to grow due to Government funding and Building Schools for the Future.


The project took 18 months to achieve its financial goals and within two years, education grew to circa 40% of turnover.


The project stages involved:


Sector Planning: Preparation of sector plans with the Board, identifying strengths in relation to competence and their existing clients and network. Developed an 18 month Marketing & Business Development strategy.


Audit and Client Listening: Carried out client perception studies to understand the strength of service offering from the market’s perspective. Prepared brand messages and case studies with client endorsements.


Tendering and Business Development: 

  • Actively created a sales pipeline of opportunities, through attending leading network groups, exhibitions and events.

  • Led and managed significant bids for new and refurbished schools.


Building Networks: Worked with the practice to build a strong network of business contacts including Main Contractors; Local Government; M&E and Structural Engineers; Cost Consultants and Project Managers.


Workshops and Masterclasses: Coached and mentored key directors and associates to network and build relationships.



Client Perception Study


Working over a three year period, the study prepared the practice for year on year improvements, which had a direct impact on financial growth.


The task was to undertake annual client perception studies for competitive positioning.


The objectives of the study were to:


  • Understand clients' perception of the organisation

  • Understand and manage clients' expectations and investigate ways the organisation could exceed them

  • Understand the organisation's performance, from the client's perspective

  • Identify ways in which the organisation could continue to provide a service which met their clients' needs

  • Establish other areas in which the organisation could provide value in the future


The process involved:


  • Working with the senior management team to identify clients and contacts for interviews

  • Set up and carry out face to face and telephone interviews

  • Preparation of the topic guide for interviews, which was agreed by the senior management team

  • Analysis of the studies to report back to the business

  • Practice wide presentations were attended by all staff

  • Identifying low hanging fruit to address immediately

  • Putting in place a plan of corrective action across the organisation

  • Confirming this strategy back to the clients who were interviewed

  • The information also fed into the sector plans