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The 2013 thoughts archive

Another new client win!

True North have just been appointed by Chester Zoo to create the 2013 summer and autumn BUGS! campaign. The focus of the campaign will be a TV commercial, supported by press, digital and outdoor advertising.

Chester Zoo is one of the leading visitor attractions in the country, and we’re chuffed to add a high profile campaign such as this one to our growing list of visitor attractions clients.

Jennifer Tegg, Marketing Manager for Chester Zoo, was impressed with our ability to combine seemingly disparate elements of the campaign. “We chose True North for their ability to combine the fun and entertainment aspects of the exhibition with education and learning. The creative is engaging and appeals to children, whilst getting across fascinating facts and information about the new animatronic bugs that will be exhibited at the zoo this summer.”

And our own Karen Hughes, Design Director, summed up the mood in the studio. “We’re extremely excited to be presented with the opportunity to work with one of the country’s leading visitor attractions. Not only does it add to our expanding list of same sector clients, it allows us to continue to combine our creative ideas with strategic insight.”

Thinkpiece - Branding in the Experience Economy

We’ve just launched our first Thinkpiece, Branding in the Experience Economy.

We’ll be releasing a series of these throughout the year, and we’d love to share our thoughts with you and get your input.

In the first piece we look at the commercial power of branded experiences, discuss why coherence is now more important than consistency and learn from Manchester United, Pizza Express, Disney and Starbucks about identifying, defining and consistently executing the brand experience they are selling.

The next in our series will concentrate on the subject of loyalty and advocacy. We’ll be thinking (and writing) about the importance and value of brand loyalty in maximising revenue from existing customers. For a copy of Branding in the Experience Economy or to sign up for future Thinkpiece's, drop an email to Nick Morgan on

From penalty box to post box

Quite remarkable…Royal Mail have released images of our latest set of stamps, Football Heroes. Celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Football Association, our stamps feature 11 of the most iconic players that have ever represented the home nations.

Working with experts at the National Football Museum who literally have run their socks off on this project, our players have been chosen because of their heroic status in the game. Working with archive images from the 50's to the 80's, and with the help of our good friend illustrator Andy Kinsman (for a big lad, he's good with his hands), we've motivated, galvanised, and moulded our 11 individual players into a team to rival any.

"Selecting only 11 players was always going to be difficult, we could have had a team of 20 or 30, but we set our stall out early on this one" say's senior designer Adrian Newell. “We’ve given 110% on this project and hopefully the lads have covered themselves in glory".

 Released just before the FA Cup Final on 8th May, as well as the stamps, you'll also be able to purchase our heroes presentation pack and prestige stamp book.

Stamps fit for a King

We're delighted our first piece of work for Jersey Post has hit the headlines this week. Our stamps and presentation packs celebrate Jersey's long and illustrious connection with Royalty, beginning with the subject of this issue, King Edward VII.

Each stamp features a well-known statue of King Edward VII, which was beautifully photographed by London photographer Stuart Hendry. Taken from all over the UK, the black and white images are printed with a light gold metallic ink to add a regal feel.

Commenting on the design of the stamps, Design Director Karen Hughes and Senior Designer Adrian Newell said "It has been a joy to work on these stamps, the client commissioned us to find an appropriate way to celebrate Jersey's Royal connections - and I think we've done just that."

Buy your set online at

Photography by Stuart Hendry:

ITV rebrand… friendly, welcoming, populist? Dull, in-house, short-lived?

The new itv rebrand rolled out on a tv screen near you this week to a mixed reception. The overwhelming consensus at TN towers was 'what a missed opportunity'. Yes we get the it-needs-to-be-warm-and-friendly-to-reflect-we're-a-populist-tv-channel-showing-Dancing-on-Ice-and-Splash!, but that seems like a rather convenient smokescreen to hide behind.

The final rendering of the scripty lettering and the bespoke typeface by Fontsmith is as you would expect, extremely professional. And we're sure the clever guys at Rudd Studio have helped bring it all alive, but we can't help feeling the central focus of the identity lacks… well any identity. There's nothing distinctive, not much personality and unfortunately it's rather forgettable. Could that have anything to do with commissioning ITV's in-house studio rather than an external design group who would naturally bring a challenging, objective viewpoint?

If any of us need reminding how invaluable a central theme is to great branding, hop over to Channel 4 now. Around (in most part of the UK) since 1982, we've seen Channel 4 reinvent their identity more times than Madonna. The '4 brand' sits at the heart of everything good they've done. The latest iteration of the identity rolls out this month... Hats off to Magpie for a job well done.

Can we really see the new ITV identity thriving on our motion recognition smart TV's in 2044? We fear not.

Talented, creative Designer? We are hiring.

Are you a talented graphic designer with a portfolio full of ideas? Do you have a couple of years’ experience under your belt and are looking for the next challenge?

You will have strong skills on the Mac; in Illustrator and Photoshop. Your portfolio must be able to demonstrate a good understanding of branding and concept development with strong creative flair and excellent visualisation skills to bring ideas and concepts to life.

If you’re looking to join an ambitious, award winning branding and design agency in Manchester and be part of an inspiring creative team, get in touch.

Send us your CV and more importantly, your portfolio to

Salary £Dependant on experience


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