THE BLOG

27
Oct

‘Soaring Spirits’

Spirit’s an interesting concept – intangible, unquantifiable, easier to feel than properly articulate. Every now and then you can experience it at its strongest – a football match where your team score at the last minute, a gig where your favourite band just kill it on stage and tonight at the Kelvingrove where the kids from MCR Pathways have just wowed us with an amazing music and drama performance.

For those that aren’t in the know, ‘Young Glasgow Talent by MCR Pathways’ is an organisation that helps young people unlock their talent. The organisation teams up with schools and provides mentors to students, some of whom, have had the most ridiculously difficult starts to life. The organisation has an exceptional record (over 700 young people supported, 15 schools participating, 800 plus mentors and 1321 volunteers registered – and all in a very short space of time.)

Tonight was the Creative Showcase, we had the great and good of Glasgow out in their many, we had the launch of a painting by the world class Gerard M Burns and it was all hosted in the most magnificent of settings – The Glasgow Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.

However, all of that pales into insignificance when compared to the soaring spirits of the young people who thrilled, entertained and moved us from the stage tonight.

Where do you start?

The evening was kicked off with an incredibly moving drama performance of the students just oh-so gently reminding us a little of what they had been through before kicking into a wonderfully moving cover of Bruno Mars’ ‘Just The Way You Are.’

We were treated to the story of Gerard Burn’s painting and how some of the students had contributed to its creation – the painting itself really is something.

And the evening was concluded by the incredible Mya, a 14 years-old singer-songwriter who confessed on stage that she suffers from autism and anxiety, but whose renditions of ‘Firefly’ and ‘Don’t Stop Believing’ left the audience absolutely stunned of the sheer potency of a 14-year old voice.

What amazing things can happen when talent is unlocked!

She mentioned she was looking to get her Facebook fanbase over 1000 and if you happen to be reading – check out https://www.facebook.com/MBmusicProductions/.

It’s definitely worth a like.

Individual talent aside, what is even more impressive is the spirit and togetherness of the young people – there was an incredibly moving moment at the end of Mya’s performance when her friends from the organisation just gate-crashed the stage, clapping, singing and all wildly encouraging us to share in the most joyous of moments.

We all did.

What’s more, the spirit of the young people is matched by each and every person in the MCR Pathways team. Whether it’s Claire O’Hara urging the audience to leave the safety of their seats to embrace the magic of the young people by standing closer to the stage. Iain MacRitchie, the founder absolutely making sure the Gerard M Burns Painting could be photographed and sent to the Herald before 730PM to make the deadline for Page-3 tomorrow. Or Robin Dewar, the IT manager who just went out in the cold Glasgow rain to get me a laptop to write this with my phone out of juice.

To a person, each and every-one of them care so much, give it everything they’ve got and exemplify this ‘soaring spirit’ themselves.

Whether you are a person interested in mentoring, an employer who wants to provide a talent taster work-experience or just somebody looking to get a little more involved – this is an organisation that’s worth knowing and supporting.

‘Soaring Spirits’ each and every one of them.

Check out http://www.youngglasgowtalent.org for more info…

Benedetto

BB

Benedetto is an ideas-driven Creative Entrepreneur. He is on a mission to unleash the power of creativity to create a better world – for people, business and society. He is the founder of the loft, a design and branding house which operates worldwide helping companies bring their brands to life in the most imaginative and effective ways possible. A real man on a mission. Benedetto likes to make things happen fast and in a big way.

08
Oct

Great Brands Sell Ideas First…

Whatever line of business you’re in, people don’t buy what you do they buy why you do it.

I got a very useful reminder of that this week when helping some early-stage entrepreneurs. They had a great software solution and were looking for ways to generate more leads from their existing website.

Having initially bored them with some worthy but rather uninspiring solutions (contact forms with less fields,) it dawned on me that to really make a significant gain, to really make a dent with what they were doing, that the site itself had to sell the higher nature of what they were offering.

In this case – a tailored solution for a specific user-group, up-to-date programme with current legislations and exceptional value.

What a difference this simple shift in communication had. It never ceases to amaze me how effective a new home-page image, tag-line and corresponding graphics can be to a potential client.

What’s more the exercise of implementing these ideas is fun and energises everybody in the organisation itself.

In Napoleon Hill’s classic ‘Think and Grow Rich’ the author states that “All master salesmen know that ideas can be sold where merchandise cannot. Ordinary salesmen do not know this – that is why they are ordinary.”

Successful companies know this too – Coca Cola sells the hit of instant refreshment not carbonated soft-drinks, Sky TV sells the cutting-edge of in-house entertainment not just TV packages and great politicians sell the vision of a brighter tomorrow not specific plans and policies.

If you’re selling professional services – sell the friendliness of the service. Selling gym memberships – sell the intensity of the exercise. Even if you’re selling double-glazing, sell the strength and protection of the final product first not the properties of the glass.

Logical information only confirms decisions we’ve already got our hearts set on. But the heart’s got to be set on something in the first place.

If you want a brand that is going to generate a lot of new business – sell the idea first. If you want a hand then give us a shout.

Benedetto

BB

Benedetto is an ideas-driven Creative Entrepreneur. He is on a mission to unleash the power of creativity to create a better world – for people, business and society. He is the founder of the loft, a design and branding house which operates worldwide helping companies bring their brands to life in the most imaginative and effective ways possible. A real man on a mission. Benedetto likes to make things happen fast and in a big way.

19
Sep

Everything You Need – for Maximising Creative Budgets

At the loft, we treat clients budgets like they were our own and look to make them stretch as far as possible. So to best help you maximise your budget for creative projects, we’ve put this handy wee guide together.

Before we get started.

Creative companies bill for time so your final quote is only ever based on two things – (the numbers of hours for a project) x (the agency rate.)

This guide helps you maximise that time to maximise the value you receive.

Accurate Briefs Remove the Guesswork
An accurate brief removes a lot of the time spent on guessing. The quicker we can hone in on the tangible items of a project (number of website pages, style of infographics, types of print techniques required, etc,) the quicker we can focus on those solutions. If you want to know what goes into preparing a good brief check out this post >>>

Leverage Content
Re-using content over different formats is an excellent way to maximise value. For example, can that infographic being used in the corporate brochure also be used on the company website? Could it also be used in the next press release? Could it be put on the factory wall? Could it be divided into different elements and shared on social media? Always look for ways to get a 2nd/3rd/4th use out of absolutely everything.

Talking of social media, team images for the website can be re-formatted for LinkedIn profiles, copy for web-projects can be re-used as mini-campaigns, etc.

Creative Flow
Creatives work best when they are in ‘the flow.’ For those that really want to maximise the value of creative work — prepare as much stuff for your creative to do at one-sitting as you can and take advantage of the creative flow. This can be having all of your people together to get all of your photographs done on-site on the same day or having all of the information ready for your case-studies when sitting down with your copywriter or making sure that the designer working on your infographics has all of the information they need to tackle developments. An un-interrupted workflow really helps the people working on creative projects

Minimise Page Styles
This is a big one. One of the most time-consuming parts of creative projects is the additional effort invested in creating multiple page styles for projects like brochures or websites. Having pages with lots of different styles does make the final solutions more interesting but the creation of new frameworks is time-consuming. What’s more – lots of different page styles can confuse a viewer – it is the reason big brands have very consistent guides for brand communications. If you want to minimise costs for larger projects? Suggest to your creative company to ‘minimise the number of pages styles.’ They’ll know what you mean, respect your pragmatism and re-double their efforts on great content.

Piggy-back Off What’s Gone Before
All creative companies, even those providing the most bespoke of bespoke services, use general templates from what they have done before for brochures, websites and other large projects. As we said above, the creation of new templates is time-consuming and energy intensive, so if you are able to use a template that has already been created, developed and tested by your agency – there are massive savings to be had with no detriment to quality. You are switching the scope of the project from creating a new template to customising a template with obvious savings. How does that work in practise? Simply look at previous examples your agency has done before and ask them for ‘something like that’ and point out what you like.

Blink First
With budgets, blink first and lets us know where  you are comfortable – we can then more quickly make a decision in how best to help. You’ll be amazed at the amount a great company can do to stretch tight budgets.

Think Long-Term
The more you can give work to one freelancer or company — the more they are likely to reward you for your loyalty. This may be a better rate or even some free extras. Always best to think long-term.

And that’s a wrap. We hope that is helpful in allowing you to maximise whatever creative budget you have, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Benedetto

BB

Benedetto is an ideas-driven Creative Entrepreneur. He is on a mission to unleash the power of creativity to create a better world – for people, business and society. He is the founder of the loft, a design and branding house which operates worldwide helping companies bring their brands to life in the most imaginative and effective ways possible. A real man on a mission. Benedetto likes to make things happen and happen fast and in a big way. He wants things done yesterday and is relentlessly driven in his quest to make tomorrow better than today for his company, the people he serves and the wider community.

19
Sep

Everything You Need – for Website Projects

For many, just knowing where to start can be the biggest challenge with web-design projects – whether it is the content you’re going to require, where everything goes or how to link it all together. With that in mind, we’ve put together an easy-to-read comprehensive and fast-paced guide to help you fill in the gaps and make a strong start. All questions we’d ask prospective clients – this is everything you need for website projects.

1. What’s the purpose of your new site?
What’s your new website for? Could it be to communicate a change of direction for the company? Show a new brand position? Generate more sales? Introduce E-Commerce functionality? The clearer a picture we have of the end goal, the more we can help you find ways to achieve that goal.

2. Can you provide some info on your company?
Let’s talk about you a little. Some info on your organisation helps us get a feel for who you are and what you stand for.

Any of the following is helpful.

– What does your company do?
– What makes your company special compared to others?
– Does your company have any specific vision, mission or values?
– Any other info?

Company documents, links to your current website or social media pages all work.

3. Who’s the target audience?
Another big one. We want to ensure that your new site reaches the right people and engages them in the right way. What can you tell us about the people you are targeting?

Are they…

Young/Old?
Male/Female?
Fun/Serious?
Take their time/Don’t have time to waste?
Are there any specific legibility issues to consider?
Anything else ?

If you’re targeting all of these people, this is fine – we can factor that in too.

4. Who’ll manage the website after we’re done?
Once the project ends, it is likely that somebody from your team will take over the reins.

We’d like to know the following about the person we hand over too.

– What would be their preferred platform to use (WordPress/Umbraco/Squarespace/Other?)
– Are they (Beginner/intermediate/advanced?)
– Is any training required after the site is built?

5. Tell us about the individual pages of your new site?
One of the first things we do with your site is put together a site structure – this will include pages, menu and any additional functionality.

What we need to know?

– How many pages?
– What goes on those pages – images/text/graphics/video?
– How will the pages link together?
– Any additional features you would like on those pages?

Features may include

– Social Media Share Buttons
– Contact Forms
– News/Social Feeds
– Video Snippets
– CTA (Call-To-Action) buttons.

Is there anything else you have in mind? Again don’t worry if you don’t have everything, include what you can and we can help with the rest.

6.  Content?
Our favourite subject – content. Nothing prevents web-projects from going live more than waiting on content (particularly written copy.)

What do we have and what do we need to create? (This can include any of the following.)

– Photographs of the people in the company/ main products/ services.
– Written copy to go on the site, this is likely to include about-us text, service text, etc…
– Graphics or infographics to highlight key statistics, customer data or product features/benefits.
– Any videos you have sitting on YouTube/Vimeo?

Like we said, the more you can provide the better. Once again, don’t worry too much about what you don’t have, we can provide ideas to help with those areas that you are missing.

7. Any SEO goals for your new site?
If you have SEO goals, let us know what they are and we can look at ways to implement these into the site.

That can include any of the following…

– Data from your previous website (such as a Google Analytics, Yoast or Crazy Egg Reports?)
– SEO actions already taken?
– Information on Keywords/Meta tags/Landing Pages?

And finally any tools or measures you would like to take with the new or revised site?

8. Do you have brand guidelines?
We are designers, what can we say. Another favourite of ours, if you have them, we want them.

9. Crucial Functionality & Anything We’ve Missed?
There is a whole host of other functional things to consider with a new website.

These can include any of the following…

– Do you have web-hosting?
– If you require web-hosting, are there any particular things we should provide? Additional Security? Database Protection? E-Mail Systems?
– Do you have access to your domain name? If not, where can we source this?
– Do you have a partner that can assist with the technical part of the project – an IT company, Web-Development Staff or Separate Web Hosting Company?
– Any cookie requirements/legal statements to go on the site?
– Anything else we may have failed to mention not included on this list?

10. Time and Budget?
How long do we have and how much do you have to spend?

Starting with time…

Looking past the ‘Go-Live’ date, are there other dates in-between? Website projects can take months or more, so if we’re creating content, we want to make this available to you even sooner for individual campaigns, social media or other purposes.

Regarding budget…

It helps to know this as early as possible. It allows us to properly spec the project with regards to content, selection of platform, training, etc… Usually a ballpark of where you feel comfortable with minimum-to-maximum spends is fine. We can take it from there.

If you have a budget to manage and are looking for ways to maximise that don’t worry we have a post on that too, check it out >>>

And that’s us. Whether you have everything on the list or not, don’t worry, we can help fill in the gaps and don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions?

Benedetto

BB

Benedetto is an ideas-driven Creative Entrepreneur. He is on a mission to unleash the power of creativity to create a better world – for people, business and society. He is the founder of the loft, a design and branding house which operates worldwide helping companies bring their brands to life in the most imaginative and effective ways possible. A real man on a mission. Benedetto likes to make things happen and happen fast and in a big way. He wants things done yesterday and is relentlessly driven in his quest to make tomorrow better than today for his company, the people he serves and the wider community.

19
Sep

Everything You Need – for Brochure Design Projects

Whether it is creating a cool cover, selecting the paper samples or agonising over the print techniques, brochure design projects tend to be one of those things that a creative enjoys doing the most. When clients approach us with their briefs for brochure projects – there tend to be a lot of unanswered questions regarding things like structure, content and printing. We’ve put this handy wee guide together to help answer some of these questions.

1. What would you like to achieve with your new brochure?
Before we get to creative questions, this is a big one. What’s your new brochure actually for?

Could it be any of the following.

– Introduce the company to new customers?
– Introduce a new product or service to market?
– Highlight the value of that particular product, service or maybe even a process?
– Something more objective – generate more leads/sales?
– Anything else?

Any info on the above really helps us, or another creative company, understand your goals for the project.

2. Tell us about the company/product/service?
Depending on what you’re hoping to achieve, it’s important to also know about the company/product/service being represented. It can be anything from what does the company do? What is the product going to be known for in the marketplace? Or any other info which helps us to better understand what we’re bringing to life?

3 Who’s the target audience?
At the loft, we want to ensure that the right messages are presented to the right people in the right way. Some people prefer to read things that are short and sweet, some prefer friendly pictures and others enjoy poring over technical information. The more you can tell us about the intended audience, the more we can design a brochure that fits.

Can you tell us, is your audience.

– Young/Old?
– Male/Female?
– Fun/Serious?
– Take their time/Don’t have time to waste?
– Anything else we need to know that we haven’t mentioned?

Of course, if you want to engage with all of these types of people that is fine – we can design that in too.

4. What about the Basics?
Now, we need to know a little about the brochure itself.

Can you tell us any of the following.

– Landscape or portrait?
– Number of pages?
– What goes on each page – images/words/graphics/ information tables/ other?
– Any legibility issues to design-in?

Any of the above which helps to fill in the gaps to what kind of brochure you’re looking for is helpful.

5. Do you have content?
Graphics, text, photographs – you’re brochure is likely to contain all three.

What do you have, what do you need and what can we help with.

– Available photography/stock photography you like?
– Any infographics or other graphics?
– Information tables?
– Anything we may have missed?

6. How about written copy?
One of the most important things about any brochure is finding great words that bring it to life. Do you have copy or would you like us or another to help?

Let us know. 

– What you have?
– What you need?

We can help with the rest.

7. What would you like to do with printing?
Once all the hard work is done – you are going to have to print your lovely new brochure. There are a tonne of different options with paper and print techniques.

What we’d like to know…

– Do you prefer to work with a specific printer?
– How many examples will you need?
– Any favoured print samples/techniques?
– Any special  requirements for the covers?
– Anything we may have missed?

As always, if you have questions, let us know? We’re all print nuts in the studio and love to help clients with their print requirements, so don’t be shy.

8. Do you have brand guidelines?
It wouldn’t be a loft post if we didn’t mention brand guidelines. In the nicest way possible – if you have them, we want them.

9. What are the key deadlines?
Getting to the nitty-gritty, how long do we have? As with all creative projects, we are guessing you’ll have a big deadline and clear completion date. Thinking beyond the big one for a minute – are there any smaller milestones?

These may include.

– Press releases
– Board meetings
– Product launches
– Internal presentations
– Digital campaigns

If you have other stuff going on, let us know? Most brochure projects involve creating content, if we have this ready, we can make it available for you before the project is finished. Great for mini-campaigns, website updates, etc.

10. Budget?
Knowing a budget to work towards allows us to best decide on resources and plan effectively.

The following is helpful to kick-off with.

– Minimum-to-maximum budgets for the project?
– Any specific content budgets for printing/photography/copy/other?

If you are looking to maximise your creative budget, check out the following guide >>>

And that’s a wrap.

Whether you have everything on the list or not, don’t worry, we can help fill in the gaps. Thanks for reading and don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

BB

Benedetto is an ideas-driven Creative Entrepreneur. He is on a mission to unleash the power of creativity to create a better world – for people, business and society. He is the founder of the loft, a design and branding house which operates worldwide helping companies bring their brands to life in the most imaginative and effective ways possible. A real man on a mission. Benedetto likes to make things happen and happen fast and in a big way. He wants things done yesterday and is relentlessly driven in his quest to make tomorrow better than today for his company, the people he serves and the wider community.

19
Sep

Everything You Need for Branding Projects

Branding is one of the most fun, interesting and effective things you can do as a company. The projects helps to bring people together, present a refreshed image to the world and demonstrate a real statement of intent to anybody that’s watching. If you are thinking of re-branding or creating a new brand, this is our guide to help you.

1. Why are you creating a new brand or re-branding?
Before starting the project, we’re keen to know, why are we creating this new identity in the first place?

– You have a new company message.
– Your company has been acquired or has merged.
– The company has changed its general direction.
– It’s just time to refresh the company image.

Or is there another reason we haven’t mentioned?

2. Identity or brand?
Are you creating an identity project that give an external face to your company, product or service or creating a proper brand which determines who you are and what you do? There are also many options in between.

Which of the following do you need?

– Values/ vision/ mission?
– USP/marketing message/ messaging for different stakeholders?
– Identity design?
– Stationary design?
– Brand guidelines?

Or are there other things we may haven’t mentioned like vehicle liveries, signage, merchandise, etc?

3. People Involved?
Who will we be interviewing to get thoughts on the current brand? Who do we work with day-to-day? Who are the key decision makers?

4. Info on the company?
Before we get to the project itself, let’s find out a little more about the company we’re branding.

Any of the following is useful.

– What does the company do?
– What’s the company story?
– What makes your company special compared to others or what is its competitive advantage?
– Any other info on the culture?

Any documents with any of the above or even just a link to your current website or social media pages work.

5. Target Audience?
Successful brands help to bring people together to strengthen existing or create new relationships with key stakeholders.

What we want to know is who are the stakeholders we’re looking to attract/build relationships with.

– Existing Customers?
– New Customers?
– Staff – New or Existing?
– Suppliers?
– Shareholders?
– Other Stakeholders?

6. Ideas being expressed?
What do you want your brand to express.

Is it any of the following. 

– The Founder’s story?
– Core Values?
– Company Vision?
– Mission Statement?
– USP or competitive advantage?
– Simple marketing message?

We don’t like to over complicate things at the loft so if it is just a simple message – that is fine too.

7. Tagline?
Talking of messages, does your company have a tag-line or any other language to describe itself or any of its offerings?

8. Where brand will the new brand be rolled out?
Once we have created this amazing new brand for you, we’d love to know where it will be rolled-out.

Will it be in any of the following places.

– Business Card?
– Corporate Stationary?
– Forms of signage?
– Online uses?
– Custom merchandise?
– Team uniforms?
– Other places?

9. Brand Guidelines?
All new brands come with a range of guidelines, this depends on the size of your company and what you do. When creating guidelines, we like to know, which of the following is useful.

– Typefaces?
– Colours?
– Photography Styles?
– Copywriting Tones?
– Rules for misuse?

1o. Deadlines and Budget?
Two of the most important things to know. How long do we have and how much do you have to spend?

Starting with your deadline, we simply need to know when do you need your new brand-identity as well as the different outputs?

Regarding budget, usually a ballpark of wherever you feel comfortable is fine. Give us a window of minimum-maximum spends, and we can take it from there. If you’d like help on maximising project budgets, we have a post on that too >>>

And that’s us 🙂

Whether you have everything on the list or not, don’t worry, we can help fill with the other questions.Thanks for reading and don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions?

Benedetto

BB

Benedetto is an ideas-driven Creative Entrepreneur. He is on a mission to unleash the power of creativity to create a better world – for people, business and society. He is the founder of the loft, a design and branding house which operates worldwide helping companies bring their brands to life in the most imaginative and effective ways possible. A real man on a mission. Benedetto likes to make things happen and happen fast and in a big way. He wants things done yesterday and is relentlessly driven in his quest to make tomorrow better than today for his company, the people he serves and the wider community.

18
Sep

Everything You Need – for Writing a Creative Brief

When writing creative briefs, every hour spent in planning can save days throughout the project – time that can be used to give a more competitive quote or a more valuable service. At the loft, we want to help remove some of the guesswork for those of you writing creative briefs so we’ve compiled a wee 10-point checklist to help you out. This is everything you need – for writing a creative brief.

1. What would you like to achieve with the project?
A big one to kick things off. What are you trying to achieve with your new creative project? Do you know exactly what you would like to do or have some goals in mind?

Goals may include.

– We would like to increase the company sales or the sales of a various product or service.
– We want the people in our company to buy more into our brand values.
– We are looking to change the perceptions of our brand online.
– Any of the above or something else?

Understanding what you want to achieve lets us consider all the different ways to help you get there.

2. Company info?
Some info on your company helps to give us an idea of who you are and what you stand for.

Any of the following is helpful.

– What does the company do?
– What would be its competitive advantage in the marketplace?
– Does the company have a vision, set of values or a mission statement?
– Anything else you can possibly tell us about?

3. Audience?
We know who you are, now who would you like to speak too? The better we can understand the target audience the more we can create a targeted message to suit.

Tell us about the audience of the project, are they.

– Customers/Suppliers/Staff/ Other Stakeholders?
– Young/Old?
– Male/Female?
– Fun/Serious?
– Take their time/Don’t have time to waste?
– Anything else we may have not mentioned?

4. Message?
What would be the message you would like to communicate for the project?

The following are just a few suggestions.

– A general marketing message for the company or the company USP?
– The promotion of a specific product or service offering?
– A series of consumer benefits or features for that product?
– The communication of your core values ?

Understanding of the message, the messenger and the audience for a creative project are the fundamentals to the success of a creative project.

4. Who’s in the creative team?
Knowing each of the different people that we shall be working with and who to go too for different reasons is incredibly helpful.

For example, who is…

– Responsible for the content?
– Going to work through the fine details of the latter parts of the project?
– The person responsible for final decisions?

Are there any other third parties we need to know about? Print partners? IT people? Copywriters? Photographers?

5. Tangibles
Every project has unknown unknowns, known unknowns and stuff we definitely know (good luck getting your head around that.) Tell us about the stuff you Definitely Know – the tangibles.

For example…

– The size or orientation of a brochure.
– The number of pages on that brochure or website.
– Things that go on each page (images, text, graphics, social media bookmarks, etc.)
– Appropriate call-to-actions.
– Other features such as contact forms, social media links, etc.

Beginning with what you already know is a good place to start, we can help fill in the blanks.

6. Good examples?
We love to see what you have in mind for your project whether it is scrap-book cut-outs of work you like, links to relevant websites or some competitor benchmarking – it is really useful to see where your head is at with a creative project and we can build on that.

7. Brand Guidelines?
With brand guidelines, if you have them, we want them.

8. Content, Content, Content!
What is the one thing that stalls 90% of creative projects? Yep, you’ve guessed it, it’s the availability of written and image content. Written copy tends to be a particular stumbling block for brochures and websites. If you are struggling with copy — speak to us and we will be able to help you by either recommending a copywriter, helping you to write it ourselves or working with you in another way to source copy.

9. Key Deadlines?
An obvious but important one. Every project has a fixed deadline but knowing the times for other milestones, such as board presentations, internal reviews or other events can be helpful too. It means we can provide bits of copy or other relevant materials for a project before the actual final deadline.

10. Budget?
Let us know where you feel comfortable? Even having a ballpark allows us to properly spec your project. We can determine how ambitious we can be creatively and the more time we can spend on your project instead of speccing your project, is time that we can re-invest into the relationship.

We also have a separate guide in helping clients maximise their creative budgets, check it out here >>>

And that’s us. As we said above, we don’t need everything on the list above but the more you can let us know – the more able we are to deliver a spec, proposal and eventually a project that surpasses expectations. If you are looking for a hand, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Benedetto

BB

Benedetto is an ideas-driven Creative Entrepreneur. He is on a mission to unleash the power of creativity to create a better world – for people, business and society. He is the founder of the loft, a design and branding house which operates worldwide helping companies bring their brands to life in the most imaginative and effective ways possible. A real man on a mission. Benedetto likes to make things happen and happen fast and in a big way. He wants things done yesterday and is relentlessly driven in his quest to make tomorrow better than today for his company, the people he serves and the wider community.

21
Aug

The F-Word

‘A company that pushes the limits of Creativity, Quality and Service.’

These are the latest words we have picked to differentiate the loft from all the others in the tightly packed, multi-faceted and incredibly competitive, creative sector which we operate.

Just to break it down a bit…

We want creative concepts that stir the soul to get us pumped about what we are doing.

We know that quality is a non-negotiable

Finally, excellent service is the foundation to any successful business.

At the loft – we are absolutely obsessed about all three.

How do we achieve the optimal mix?
The secret lies in the F-Word and no not the one you are thinking off.
While some may be terrified of it and others do their best to completely avoid it.

At the loft, we wholeheartedly embrace the F-word.

Failure.

We are comfortable in its presence, we use it as an opportunity to learn and we treat it as rocket fuel to break down those creative brick walls we face on a daily basis.

For us, it is the first step to success.

Fail Fast, Fail Often, Fail your way to Success.

Its something you will hear a lot of in our studio, alongside the example of a rocket which is almost permanently of course as it fails its way to the moon.

A love of failure might seem counterproductive but the biggest problem most creatives face is the enormity of the initial brief.

It can be so overwhelming that procrastination reigns supreme – ‘lighter/ darker, coloured/ monotone, in-line/ staggered…’

Endless analysis is followed by very little action. People build such large walls in their own minds that they are stunted into in-action. So much so, that the scale of even the first task overwhelms them.

At the loft, we just don’t have time for that.

We want to reign supreme in not one but three different areas – who has time for procrastination?

We believe action is key – work fast, smaller actions, quick decisions, minimise guess work, face uncomfortable truths, de-risk the concepts. Each of these behaviours help us to get through a massive workload – we get through more in a day than some would get through in a week.

Oh and it leaves plenty of time for barbecues, parties, drinks and the other fun stuff we regularly enjoy.

What’s more and this is the best bit, working faster and with greater intensity may seem like harder work but actually the opposite is true.
Its energising.

Guesswork is tiring, procrastination robs us of momentum and playing it safe is the surest way to completely lose interest.

Whether it is the ‘Lean Start-Up’ philosophy, the E-Spark philosophy or the Silicone Valley philosophy – it is one that we wholeheartedly believe in and use every single day.

Want to start succeeding, time to start failing.

Benedetto

BB

Benedetto is an ideas-driven Creative Entrepreneur. He is on a mission to unleash the power of creativity to create a better world – for people, business and society.

He is the founder of the loft, a design and branding house which operates worldwide helping companies bring their brands to life in the most imaginative and effective ways possible.

The loft serves companies in every sector and is quite simply the best in the business at creating brands that capture the imagination.

In addition to his role with the loft, Benedetto is an avid supporter of young people into enterprise. Having been supported by organisations such as PSYBT and currently by E-Spark, he does all he can to support young entrepreneurs. He provides assistance to organisations such as Bridge2Business, Young Enterprise Scotland and acts as a mentor for young business owners with Entrepreneurial Scotland.

His support to the next generation doesn’t end there, Benedetto is a big supporter of MCR Pathways, an organisation which helps disadvantaged children secure better futures through mentoring. Alongside his team at the loft, he provides creative support to the organisation as well as specialist work experiences for the students in the studio.

A real man on a mission. Benedetto likes to make things happen and happen fast and in a big way. He always wants things done yesterday and is relentlessly driven in his quest to make tomorrow better than today for his company, the people he serves and the wider community.

17
Jul

Studio Space for Creative Freelancers

Creative Coworking Glasgow

Beautiful space, great people, affordable rates, situated in South Block, the heart of Glasgow’s design and arts community. Come join your new creative family by contacting hotdesk@theloft.co or phoning 0141 354 1595 for more info…

25
May

16 Personalities

16 Personalities
Are you a commander, an executive or an advocate? Not a question we regularly ask ourselves but one that we were questioning this month. In an effort to get to know one another and ourselves better we all took part in the Myers-Brigg’s questionnaire and got up close and personal with our personality strengths and weaknesses.

It all started with 16 Personalities — which is a great website for breaking down your personality type and puts it into layman’s terms. Be warned though, it is incredibly fascinating and has become seriously addictive, all my friends and family have now taken the test even with all their protests.

Eager to find out more we invited Christine Penman into the studio to explain more about our personality types and focus on how we can work as a team even more effectively – not your usual Friday morning breakfast meeting! Starting off with a simple task to show how everyone thinks differently, we all closed our eyes and Christine said the word “horse” and then we opened our eyes and shared what we thought of. One saw a black stallion, another saw a horse in Spain and of course, thanks to my other half, I saw a horse in Hawick. Next, we broke down each personality aspect and learnt about what it means to be an introvert or extrovert, use intuition or sensing, are thinking or feelings led and whether you use judging or perceiving when tackling work. The most stand out difference is between being thinking or feelings led. In a task, we were split into our two groups and asked to write about how we deal with conflict when we are directly involved or not directly involved. For the feelings led group, we found that we tend to avoid conflict and can feel quite blind-sided by it. Whereas for the thinking led group, all the emotion is taken out of it and they like to get to the point and “explain to them 3 times why they are wrong.” All jokes aside, the full morning was great and we really did learn a lot about ourselves and each other. Being able to understand each other’s personality types and what each person brings to the team was very interesting and should enable us to work more efficiently as a team.

The aftermath — having access to all this valuable information, we wanted to find a way of communicating this quickly and effectively with each other so Nicola got her design on and came up with cheat sheets for everyone. These cheat sheets take pride of place in our studio and outline our personality stats, our ‘devine’ skills and how we activate these skills in a simple but incredibly effective profile design. They have been a talking point among us and clients, giving them a quick insight into the team and all our quirks.

WARNING: ENTERING THE LOFT MAY INVOLVE TAKING PART IN A PERSONALITY TEST

Check out the test>>>

Laura