BRAND POSITIONING & CAMPAIGN EXECUTION
Twist was tasked to differentiate Champlain College from their competition and provide a compelling message to work internally with students and faculty, and externally with prospective students. Champlain wanted to communicate to the people who shared their focus and determination, and do it in a provocative and compelling way.
The result was “Champlain Rules.” It’s an iconoclastic campaign that features non-traditional and unexpected “rules” that are really anti-rules, meant to challenge and inspire current and prospective students, like “Never been done before? It’s not a warning, it’s an invitation,” and “Choose professors who profess less and inspire more.” And of course, because Champlain is in the skier’s paradise of Burlington, Vermont: “Studying moguls is still considered studying.” The campaign won three Awards of Excellence from the UCDA (University and College Designers Association).
“In higher education there is a difficult balance between being market-relevant and true to mission. Unlike many industries, there is not the ability to change strategic directions based on product, or for that matter, significantly change identity, to become more attractive to the marketplace. Thus, one of the key marketing processes needs to take the historical, experiential and product-oriented attributes and make them as appealing and emotional as possible.
“I have been in higher education for more than 20 years, and I have yet to see anyone as talented as Danny Schuman in creating new marketing life when it seems all avenues have been explored. His skill is to identify the most important parts of an institution’s existence and turn them into impactful ideas and words so that people naturally gravitate towards them. If you are seeking a new, and better, way of positioning your college or university, hire Danny.”
-Ian Mortimer, Vice President, Enrollment Management and Marketing
SMALL BUSINESS BRAND STRATEGY
A classic marketing story for anyone interested in creating a basic brand strategy but not sure how it works or why you should do it. Twist helped Howl at the Moon clearly and powerfully articulate their basic strategic elements so they could start tying everything together and use one voice to market the Howl brand, saving them time, money, and lots of antacids. Anywhere the Howl story is told and brought to life, the work we did together will help the people who work anywhere at Howl at the Moon tell it consistently and convincingly, and ensure a strong culture with a strong brand and consistent messaging for years to come.
“As the owner of a business that has to move fast and hasn't really worked with marketing consultants, I wasn’t sure what to expect and was even a little skeptical about spending the time and money. But the work Danny did helped us crystallize the thinking we’d been doing for years; he didn’t create anything brand new, he just synthesized what was in our heads and came up with something that nailed the essence of our brand. It provided the strategic foundation to help us communicate to our people how to talk about and live the Howl at the Moon brand, and gave us the language and tools we needed to start creating materials with a consistent look and feel. When Danny presented the essence video to the managers at our annual meeting, there was a standing ovation, which told us the work was spot on.”
-Bradd O’Brien, President, Howl at the Moon
NAMING A BRAND, BUILDING IT FROM SCRATCH
Mercer had been approached with a great opportunity by one of the biggest wholesalers in the world: create a branded freeze-dried fruit product to sell in their stores. To help create a great brand around their high-quality product, Mercer turned to Twist to create a name, visual identity, and packaging.
In two months, Twist and Mercer got to a brand-relevant, legally viable, quantitatively consumer-validated name, and in two more months, our design partner created an overall look and packaging for different flavors, needs, and sizes that gave life to the new name and excited the wholesaler, as well as other potential retailers.
“Danny was instrumental in helping us build a new brand from initial concept through to in store and online execution. He was absolutely integral in helping us understanding the category, competition and target consumers and then formulating all aspects of the brand from the name, positioning, packaging and retail execution strategy. We couldn’t have done it without him.”
- Wayne Carpenter, Managing Director, Lake Pacific Partners (Owner, Mercer)
CREATING AN INNOVATION STRATEGY, DEVELOPING NEW PRODUCTS
Gatorade’s insights and innovation teams partnered with Twist to rebuild the innovation strategy from the ground up, co-create need-state driven insights, and fill the pipeline with new products and services reflecting Gatorade’s strategic goals, to help position the innovation strategy and pipeline for long-term success.
TELLING A BRAND STORY
The client team had a brilliant idea for a new brew, and they came to Twist with two goals: One, to build a case and internal momentum around the new beer; and two, to create a collaborative process that would include several of their agencies with different areas of expertise to bring it to life. Together with the agency partners, we crafted the story behind this new beer brand.
The Child Care Center of Evanston had a problem: Their name. Loyalists loved it, but nobody else could remember it, and despite being an institution in Evanston, Illinois for decades, their enrollment was declining. Twist took the non-profit through a diligent strategic process, guiding families, patrons, teachers and board members to a rechristening as The Learning Bridge of Evanston. We also developed a new logo and simple brand identity. The work created new energy among current supporters and brought in new families that helped increase both enrollment and revenue by double digits.