People often ask us what types of clients we look for, and what types of projects are the best fit with our expertise. To some degree, we do "a little bit of everything," but the type of work that is really the sweet-spot for us is in what we call "content-focused design." We thought this would be a good opportunity to describe what we mean by that, and explore some of the categories of clients and projects that are a good fit with this approach.
Some of Our Current and Past Clients:
John's early background as a designer was in publishing, working as graphic artist and art director at a variety of regional and national publications in the Boston area. He worked in both editorial and marketing departments, and in newsstand, trade, B2B and custom-publishing. Through these experiences, he developed an understanding of the storytelling approach to producing a good editorial layout, and learned to work closely with writers, editors, illustrators and photographers. On the marketing side, he developed an understanding of how to approach design of marketing collateral, white papers, media kits and other sales tools, and work with the very different viewpoint of sales and marketing professionals.
Our clients today, however, are generally not traditional editorial publications, but rather institutions and organizations that produce content-heavy communication pieces, many very technical in nature. These types of projects share many similarities with traditional editorial publications, and because of our publishing background, we are more adept at managing them than a traditional graphic design shop or advertising agency. We love words, and telling stories. We always strive to fully understand the content of a piece in order to find the best methods to illustrate the concepts, create a well-structured user-experience (whether for print or online), and finesse the typography to a high level of sophistication and readability. And we are familiar with the sometimes arduous process of editing, proofreading, and obtaining approval from senior management that goes into production of these kind of projects, especially within large organizations.
In our 17 years in business, we have found that most of our clients fit into one of these five categories:
Top Client Types
1) Financial Services
Companies ranging from financial publishers to investment management firms. We have developed a deep understanding of financial and investment terminology, and the type of data representation we need to create to communicate investment advise to their clients.
CLIENTS INCLUDE: InvestorPlace Media • Adviser Investments • Fidelity Investments • Lincoln Financial
PROJECTS INCLUDE: investor newsletters & guidebooks • sector reports • fund profiles • annual reports • marketing collateral • website support
2) Educational & Cultural Institutions
Colleges and universities, and similar organizations have their own unique process and methods for developing communications materials. Having worked with many such organizations over the years, we have come to understand how they work, and have developed strong ongoing relationships with marketing, development, advancement, and academic departments within many such institutions.
CLIENTS INCLUDE: UMass Lowell • Landmark School • Babson College • University of Northern Colorado • The MacDowell Colony
PROJECTS INCLUDE: alumni magazines • newsletters • president's reports • fundraising reports • curriculum books • conference programs • course catalogs • viewbooks
3) Research ORGANIZATIONS and Foundations
From large international research organizations to smaller local foundations, these institutions need to communicate with their members in a variety of ways. We have worked with organizations with a very diverse range of missions, including urban design, mindfulness, and environmental preservation. By becoming ongoing design partners with these organizations, we come to understand the specifics of their mission, which allows us to develop more successful communications materials.
CLIENTS INCLUDE: Urban Land Institute • Mind & Life Institute • Mystic River Watershed Association • The Solomon Foundation • Women's Fund of Essex County
PROJECTS INCLUDE: books • annual reports • magazines • website design & development • branding • conference programs • marketing collateral
4) Corporate Communications
Large corporations with internal marketing departments often outsource projects to us when they are looking for expertise in more content-driven projects. With these clients, it is essential that we fully understand, and work with their often rigid brand guidelines, but be able interpret and integrate their brand into a more content-based media.
CLIENTS INCLUDE: Pearson Education • Wolters Kluwer • Time Warner Cable • Fidelity Investments
PROJECTS INCLUDE: white papers • product catalogs • content marketing • annual reports • magazines • website support
5) TARGETED MARKETING COMPANIES
We often partner with small targeted marketing companies in segments ranging from content-marketing to branding to financial services marketing. Working as a team with these experts in their market segment, we provide their clients with design services on their more content-focused projects.
CLIENTS INCLUDE: RSL Media • Bullseye Communications • Communications, Ink
PROJECTS INCLUDE: content marketing • magazines • newsletters • website design & development • eBooks • marketing collateral
What do these clients have in common that makes them a good fit with our services?
They produce a wide range of content-rich communications vehicles for both print and web.
They are looking for a design partner with expertise in these types of materials.
Most have internal editors and marketing departments, but outsource for design, production & development services.
They require attention to detail and reliability, quick turnaround, and a close working relationship with a design partner that understands their brand, business, and customers.
We have the expertise in these types of projects to be able to work with a client's internal staff to deliver creative, quality, results in a timely manner. For many of our long term clients, we operate almost as an inhouse agency or design department, and have developed close working relationships with their internal staff.
If your organization produces this type of content, and you are looking for a design partner than understands the specifics of these types of projects, check out our full portfolio, and contact us to see how we can help you better communicate with your audience.