One of the more interesting aspects of straitened times is the way creative businesses respond. It is not just a case of drawing in the horns and trying even harder to help clients. It is about doing things differently.
This is the case with branding group Someone. With projects as big and diverse as, say, Betfair, Eurostar and the National Maritime Museum, the consultancy isn’t suffering like others from dwindling workloads, but its forthright approach is refreshingly different, reflecting the diversity of the partners’ backgrounds.
The launch of digital arm Someone Else builds on this. Someone isn’t the only consultancy to bring in a senior player to head up a digital team that works with or independently of the main group, depending on the project. Conran Holdings – owner of Studio Conran and architectural group Conran & Partners – set up Conran Singh last October, with Digit founder Daljit Singh at the helm. But by appointing Warren Hutchinson from ad agency LBI, Someone has added another kind of creative to the mix.
This diversity reflects the blurring between advertising and design and seemingly enriches Someone’s offer
This diversity reflects the blurring between advertising and design and seemingly enriches Someone’s offer. Certainly, there is a confidence about the partners reminiscent of adland and their point of view differs from that of most branding groups. They are respectful of clients but not afraid of them, and keen to engage with stakeholders throughout the branding process.
The Someone team appears to have its finger on the pulse of branding. Whether or not you agree with Simon Manchipp’s assertion that the logo is dead, for example, you have to admire him for voicing it. More pertinent, perhaps, is his observation that brand communication now is more about ’chatting’ than ’broadcasting’.
Someone isn’t the only interesting consultancy out there. Far from it. But it would be great to see more groups setting their own agenda and backing it with great work.