Standard Life Financial Services didn’t have a purpose. Or rather, they didn’t have a Purpose – a directional understanding of why they were doing what they were doing and how to think about and structure what they would do in the future.
That’s where Sid Lee came in. We knew, of course, that a statement of purpose could never be imposed on a company by an external party, but we came in prepared to help with a whole host of tools, workshops and brainpower.
Searching for why We ran workshops in every market around the world, asking employees what they liked about their jobs, what they thought Standard Life excelled at, and where they wanted to see improvement.
Then we analyzed hundreds of pages of free-form answers, searching for common threads and interesting ideas. We found three key themes that ran through all of the answers, which became the three defining themes of the Standard Life mission.
Then we set out to capture the essence of the three key areas of action in one unifying purpose statement. Extensive brainstorming, workshopping, and competitor analysis led us to a few hypotheses, and we tested and refined until we landed on a statement that felt just right. Noble, but relatable. Aspirational yet actionable. And most importantly, directive and forward-looking.
Understanding the why Of course just finding the answer was just the beginning, as the 9,000+ Standard Life employees around the world needed to not only hear but understand and take to heart the new company purpose.
To that end, we created what we called a ‘change management toolbox’ – both a physical kit consisting of extensive explanation and interactive tools like storycards for implementing the why in everyday decisions, as well as a detailed plan for engaging local market management in disseminating the message in an engaging and interactive manner.
Understanding the why Finally, we were tasked with organising the Standard Life EMEA Brand Architecture, including a brand-new visual language to help tie everything together.
Execution We also supported Standard Life in bringing on their first corporate sports sponsorship in Andy Murray, including creating a series of tactical ads for Wimbledon 2014.
Andy Murray Manifesto
Context: Microsoft requested a set of solutions for a couple of tricky business challenges:
(1) Their salespeople were not finding anything interesting, creative, or human to talk to their leads about when trying to promote Microsoft business suite products.
(2) They were attending, sponsoring and producing a whole bunch of events, but there was no rhyme, reason, or rigour behind any of them.
(3) New product launches continued to come and go focusing entirely on specs, while all of their competitors had moved into a more interesting, emotionally rich territory.
Process: We realized that we were not going to get customers excited about Microsoft products until we got Microsoft employees excited about their products.
Outcome: Our solution was a careful response to the key business problems – a transformation in the way they do business much more than the way they communicate.
(1) C2 Spark: In collaboration with our partners in Montreal, C2, with whom we organize a highly creative un-conference every year, we launched a European spinoff called C2 Spark, sponsored by Microsoft. These events took place in all of their key markets, and we invited key Microsoft salespeople combined with key Business Decision Makers (BDMs). We invited highly creative speakers to come and spark creative discussions among these groups (pun intended).
(2) Events strategy: C2 Spark events were just one pillar of the three-pronged events strategy that we helped Microsoft develop.
(3) Launch of Surface 3: This student-targeted product was set to launch in June 2015, and we needed a fast-paced, highly targeted campaign to draw pre-sales. We knew that specs were no longer going to cut it with this audience, and neither would the USP Microsoft had been using up to this point, “productivity”. Students needed a reason to care. So we created the campaign “#Beneaththesurface”, which offered university students the chance to explore their “side” passion through a partnership with Skillshare – emphasizing that both our student audience, and the Surface 3, cared about more than just completing schoolwork faster. Due to logistical challenges the company unfortunately went with a lighter campaign.
Nivea Men needed a digital strategy for EMEA. They found that they were lacking a clear and consistent voice in online communications, and were not sure who they were even talking to in the first place.
This digital strategy was to go directly to local markets with idiot-proof instructions.
So we helped them to perform
(1) a deep-dive into their target audience including personas
(2) an analysis of key calendar and topical moments to leverage,
(3) the types of content their audience would engage with, and
(4) key digital & social channels to utilise for each theme and type of content.
Our final task was to wrap this up in a creative concept and execution strategy: #LifeHacks is a serial digital content platform for social and film content.
Result: Significant increase in local content by markets +1M global Facebook fans (total 3.6M)
NIVEA MEN #Lifehack - Open A Bottle Without A Corkscrew!