+ How much will it all cost?

Our creative time is charged out at £70 per hour, production management time is charged out at £50 per hour. We are neither the most, nor the least expensive but we do represent excellent value for money.

Every project is quoted up front before commencing, so that you always know what to expect. There will always be companies out there who will be cheaper, but with 29 years experience behind us already, you can rest assured that our experience, quality, professionalism, creativity and service levels will provide you with a risk free option.

+ We have a specific budget in mind, can you work within that?

Yes, as long as it’s a realistic budget for what you’re looking to achieve. Generally we are flexible and will guide on the best use of your available budget.

+ Will you pitch designs for free?

No. We do not ask anyone to work for free and therefore we don’t expect to be asked to work for free either.

+ How long will my project take to complete?

At this point it is not possible to give a complete answer as this will depend entirely on the final objectives, agreed deliverables and of course your deadline.

Once we have this information our Production Director Suzie will put in place a project timeline showing all the key milestones and deliverables for each specific part of your project. Suzie will be responsible for managing the production on a daily basis, ensuring everything is delivered on time – and to budget.

+ Do you have specific experience in my particular sector/industry?

With 29 years in the business, there is not much we haven’t done! However, specific industry experience is not relevant, as long as we stick to our agreed process of audit, strategy and then implementation. The process Darwin has developed over the years allows us to gain a comprehensive understanding of; you, your objectives, your strengths and weaknesses, your competitive advantage, the markets you operate in, your position within those markets, your customers and of course your competitors, fairly quickly.

+ What’s involved in the process?

For every project, for every client, our process is meticulous. We listen. We investigate. We think. We plan. And then, and only then, do we create. In that order.

Our first priority is always to understand your organisation – your mission, vision and values. Your target markets, corporate culture, competitive advantage, strengths and weaknesses, marketing strategies and challenges for the future. More than that we want to know about your customers. The more we understand them, their wants, needs and desires, the clearer and more accurate we can make your communication with them. Once we have gained this comprehensive understanding we set about designing the brand collateral that will achieve your desired objectives.

+ Do I have to provide you with a project brief?

Yes and no. At our initial meeting we will ask all the questions we need to in order to draw out all the information we need to complete a comprehensive project brief.

+ What does the cost include?

Generally everything. At least everything that we know of at that time. Anything that crops up later can be quoted for separately, but everything that is included and not included is listed in our comprehensive quotation.

+ How long have you been established?

I started the company in 1994. It’s been a long journey, not all of it smooth! We’ve learned many things along the way and everyday we continue to learn. It’s this invaluable experience that we can bring to you. After 29 years in the industry I’m still passionately dedicated to helping companies from the large national to the little local build their brands. The projects may vary in terms of size and scope but our principles, and how we apply them, remain constant.

+ What is a Brand?

The term “brand” has now permeated just about every aspect of society, and can be easily applied to companies, services, utilities, charities, football teams and even government initiatives as it has been in the past to packaged goods.

At one level a brand is a product or service with a name. As consumers in a consumer society we use brands everyday to help us define our values, our lifestyles and our goals. Products that are well branded sell better than those that aren’t. The exact same is true of companies. If you don’t have a brand you have a commodity, and commodities have a limited shelf life. They can be imitated, undercut and eventually forced out of the market.

Our goal is to ensure that our client’s brands, whether products, services, or organisations, stand out from the crowd and communicate effectively with their customers.

+ How do I know you will get it right?

Our experience and the process we have developed over many years ensure we never fail to deliver. Plus our unique process is broken down into four key stages. Stage 1 – Brand Audit, Stage 2 – Brand Strategy, Stage – 3 Brand Collateral and Stage 4 – Brand Consulting. You commission us on a stage by stage basis which means you get to monitor and evaluate the entire process and only commission the next stage when you are completely satisfied.

+ Will you take the photographs for us?

Yes, but we are not photographers! We have a wide network of professional photographers, each with their own specialisms. We manage the whole photography process on your behalf including briefing the photographer, hiring models, sourcing and hiring locations and art directing the photo shoot itself to ensure the finished shot is on brief and communicates the key messages.

+ Do you offer printing services?

Yes, but we are not printers! We have extensive experience dealing with commercial printers and have the knowledge to know who is the right printer for each specific part of the project. We can draw up a print spec, obtain quotes and manage the whole print production process ensuring quality control; budgets and deadlines are all met.

+ Does branding, design and marketing really work?

If done properly, yes. The message has to be clear, concise, differentiated, highly visible and consistent.

“Doing business without branding is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you’re doing, but nobody else does.” – Stuart H. Britt

+ Do brands matter for SME’s?

Only one company can be the cheapest – the others have to use branding. The stronger the brand, the greater the profit margin. The best brand identities have business acumen as well as aesthetic value. The stronger the brand, the more people listen.

+ What makes you different?

While we are strong in Marketing, Advertising and Branding and can compete against the best in all these areas, our process is the bit that truly sets us apart. Having the business acumen, experience and ability to conduct a brand audit, plan a brand strategy and then implement it puts us in a unique position.

+ Is my logo that important?

There’s an old saying that “you only get one chance to make a first impression”. Your logo makes a powerful first impression on your potential customers. A unique identity adds value to a brand wherever it appears. Literally and emotionally. What kind of first impression does your logo make?

+ Who owns Darwin?

Darwin is a small independent company solely owned by husband and wife team Vincent and Suzie Bissette.

+ Who will deal with my project?

We don’t employ account handlers, so when you want to see someone, you’ll see our Managing Director, Vincent Bissette. On a day-to-day project basis you will also deal with our Production Director, Suzie Bissette.

+ Will you help us develop a Brand name?

Yes. The power of a brand name should never be underestimated. That’s why we give it so much attention and consideration. It is, after all, the very foundation upon which a brand is built. We’ll find one that reflects the very DNA of the business. One that’s pronounceable, protectable, likeable and appropriate.

+ Do you design websites?

Yes we do. It’s important that your website is in keeping with the rest of your branding and communication materials, therefore it’s better that the look and feel is governed by your branding consultancy.

+ Do you offer Online Internet Marketing?

Yes. We have a wide network of independent specialists, each with their own areas of expertise. We have the knowledge and experience to know who is the right expert for each specific part of the project.

+ Can I cancel the project once it’s started?

If you wished to cancel or suspend a contract with us at any point, then all we would ask is that you pay for all works carried out up to the time of cancellation.

We would also charge for any materials or services specially delivered or ordered.

+ Do I own the copyright of any designs you create for me?

The copyright of the Client selected design originated by us can be transferred to you on full payment of the fees and costs owed.

+ Do you offer Interior Design services?

Yes we do. We have a specialist commercial Interior Designer who we collaborate with on projects on a regular basis. Her name is Jackie Muir of Muir Interiors. She is vastly experienced across a multitude of sectors. You can see some of her work within our work pages and also on her own website here. We have been working with Jackie for over 15 years and throughout that time we have built up an almost telepathic understanding of each others work.

+ Can you write the words for us?

In a word, yes. The words in any communication are crucial to the success of the project. Words should never be underestimated in their power to engage, inform and motivate people.

Darwin’s copywriter Croy Thomson is vastly experienced, highly creative and, as a graduate of Glasgow School of Art, extremely adept at making words enhance imagery, voices, sound effects, typography … whatever it takes to maximise the impact of your message and your brand.

+ Will you supply me with a copy of all the artwork you create for me?

Of course you can have a copy of all artwork on request, once the project is completed and on full payment of any outstanding fees.

+ How do I know what you are recommending will work?

Our past work, testimonials from the people we have worked with and the tried and tested process that we follow.

+ Are you a full service agency?

Yes and no. Well mostly. We offer everything that a full service agency offers but we don’t have all the expertise in house. All the strategy, planning, creative work and project management is handled in-house. Other expertise we buy in as and when specific parts of a project dictates. This means you are not paying for services, staff and overheads that you may not always need.

+ I’m not sure exactly what I need, can you help?

Absolutely. First we’ll sit down with you, and listen to what you have to say. We look at where you are. We listen to where you want to be. We then conduct a review. We research your competitors and the market. This all helps us form a complete picture not only of your company, but the world around it. We help you define your brand values and unique selling propositions. We clearly define the key messages and we put in place a strategy that will communicate the right message is to the right people, at the right time, using the right tone and the right media.

+ Will you meet our deadline?

Yes. Provided it is reasonable and we have agreed to it. Once agreed, we never fail to deliver.

+ Why should I re brand?

The following questions can help you determine how your brand is standing up to the test of time and will be a good early indicator whether or not you should consider re branding. Ask them on an annual basis, at the very least.

Are you facing new or stronger competition?
Yes = attention needed

If so, how well do your brand identity; promise, and experience stand up to the challenge?
Not well = attention needed

Has your company changed in recent years?
Yes = attention needed

Have you changed or improved your products or service offerings?
Yes = attention needed

Has your organization found it necessary to use alternate versions of your brand name, logo, and tagline in certain circumstances?
Yes = attention needed

Does your brand identity match the quality and sophistication of the business you’ve become?
No = attention needed

Is your name still an appropriate label for the business you’ve become, the promise you keep, and the markets you serve?
No = attention needed

Do your brand name, logo, and tagline appeal to current market and cultural tastes and trends?
No = attention needed

Is your brand well recognised among those you target as customers? When asked to name top contenders in your market category, do all, most, or few prospects cite your brand?
All = no attention needed / Most = some attention needed / Few = attention needed

Are your communications – from your ads to your web site to your phone and mail and in-person contacts – uniformly consistent and competitive in terms of look, character and brand message?
No = attention needed

+ How big is your team?

Darwin is primarily Vincent and Suzie Bissette. However we do have a experienced team each with his/her own specialisms that we hire in as and when the project dictates.

+ Who have you done work for?

Well amongst others…

Alba Gas
Alexanders Town and Country Specialists
Argyle and Clyde Heallth Board
Ashbourne Healthcare PLC
Barrhead Sanitaryware
Baxter Ramsay
Blue Square
Care Village UK
Carousel Training Consultants
City & Provincial Properties PLC
Chatwins Bakers
Donald Ross Residential
Dryzone UK
Dunbar Bank PLC
Duncans of Scotland
East Dunbartonshire Council
East Lothian Council
East Renfrewshire Council
Forth Valley Health Board
Glasgow City Council
Glasgow Development Agency
Glasgow School of Art
Greater Glasgow Health Board
Heatherstone Consultants
HR Recruitment Services
Il Pavone
JRG Group
Knockderry Country House Hotel
Leavenheath Consultants
Linian Fire Clip
Macarthur Denton Asset Management
McDonalds Bakers
Moon Developments
Muir Interiors
Mussel Inn
Orkney Herring
Peacock Salt
Ronald McDonald House
Royal and Sun Alliance
Scottish Amicable
Scottish Association for Mental Health
Scottish Enterprise
Scottish Leaders
Scottish Life
Seaford Finance
Siebert Telecom Solutions
SM Baynes the Family Bakers
Sutton Group
Tendring Mental Health Support
The Bijou Wine Co
The Scottish Executive
The Scottish Labour Party
The Scottish Parliament
Waverley Wines
West of Scotland Water
West Lothian Council