marmalade london

The Wrap Up: 2020 Edition

MARM THINKS - 18.12.20

As we hurtle towards the end of the year here at Marmalade, we’ve begun the usual review of the last twelve months, with this year’s debate feeling anything but ‘usual’. Some said 2020 felt like that drunk uncle at Christmas who stuck around, uninvited, and wreaked havoc for the whole year. Others, like that horrendous New Years Day hangover that just won’t budge, long after the fireworks have died down. All jokes aside, it’s no doubt COVID-19 has been an omnipresent fixture in our lives. For Team Marm, we’ve been lucky to keep the virus itself at bay, but it’s tremors have been unavoidable. Phil Marshall, Creative Director here at Marmalade, comments “Our entire ecosystem was turned on its head. As an agency we had to be agile, adapt quickly, and continually reassess the best ways of working for both our team and our clients”.

With some well-deserved rest and the promise of mulled wine and mince pies just around the corner, we wanted to look back at a few of our 2020 success stories, and give you a snippet of things to come for 2021. Our ability to roll with the punches during these times is inarguably our biggest success, and has allowed us to provide our clients with the tools they need to navigate the pandemic and beyond. It’s safe to say the difficulties facing our industry will continue to inform the way we design, strategise and collaborate in 2021, but this year has certainly left us feeling prepared for whatever challenges lay ahead.

'As an agency we had to be agile, adapt quickly, and continually reassess the best ways of working for both our team and our clients.'

Earlier this year, we had the pleasure of working with Stretchline, a leading global elastics manufacturer who came to us with the common complaint of struggling to make their traditionally B2B business, more consumer friendly. As a component parts company, their technology makes its way into many of our most loved sports, underwear and athleisure garments, yet their brand wasn’t successfully speaking to trade or consumers in an authentic way. Our partnership with Stretchline saw us undertake a full brand audit of the business, define Stretchline’s overarching brand identity, and place them rightfully at the forefront of the industry as straight-talking innovators. A consistent suite of icons made Stretchline’s sub-brands easily identifiable to buyers and end-consumers alike, with space to hero each product under the Stretchline umbrella. With a brand that now feels open and uncomplicated, Stretchline’s identity positions it comfortably as a bold leader in an often ‘unseen’ market. The full case study on our work with Stretchline will drop in 2021, but we’re happy to see our digital work now live at stretchline.com.

As we’ve seen throughout 2020, the food & beverage landscape has shifted significantly. A swell in demand has led to a boom in the online grocery space, and with the new found confidence in online shopping, consumers are not only demanding more choice, but expecting that choice to be more convenient than ever before. This is a change we’ve felt first hand, with many of our current projects focussing on this sector, and the need to secure brand presence in a digital landscape. Our recent work on Amazon’s own brand spirits debut, Tovess, has seen a winning combination of consistency, convenience, and category-nuanced design. This success prompted Amazon to launch 3 new flavours of its ever popular Tovess Gin, and branch out into Spiced Rum, Premium Vodka and Scotch Whiskeys. We’ve been on the Tovess journey since the beginning, developing a consistent family of spirits that shine within their product category, whilst building brand equity in the wider online spirits landscape. We’ll be delving into this project more next year, in the meantime treat yourself to a Tovess G&T, over at amazon.co.uk.

This year we’ve been excited to see a longstanding project of ours come to light, with our work for F&F Clothing hitting Tesco stores up and down the country. When we partnered with F&F almost three years ago, we didn’t realise quite how relevant it would be in today’s climate, however we knew the impact it needed to bring to the market, and the shelf-life it needed to surpass. The dwindling British high street meant it was more important than even to ensure a future proofed brand aesthetic, one bold enough to supersede the high street, whilst servicing the specific needs of a supermarket shopper. Fast-forward to today, and as our shopping habits shift dramatically to the online space, and our opportunities to shop in real life lessen, supermarket fashion has secured a unique advantage. Understanding the needs of the customer, and how they shop in this time-precious retail space meant our redesign needed to champion functionality, without compromising on a new fashion-forward look and feel. Whilst we worked alongside the F&F team, we created a consumer-friendly visual system across all instore packaging, one that feels elevated and chic, yet shoppable – a confident voice to be celebrated. As our work continues to roll out across all departments in both UK and EU stores, we’ll be dropping a more in-depth look at our work with this international retailer.

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