Out of the box
Ecrubox is an incredible success story based on the untamed rebellion of Heather Horton against the "same old'' agency format. As we grew, we evolved quickly and strategically.
In 2020 we passed our first £1m in billables, with this growth comes necessary change. Some of that change is deliberate and some forced upon us.
The world in which Ecrubox exists has been changed by world events, the proliferation of Al and automation and by alterations in the relationship between consumers and brands. We are as vital as ever, but we must be bold. We must continue to rebel. We must be extraordinary if we are to succeed in our shared goal of being a “go-to" agency for eCommerce acceleration and holistic, innovative online business consulting.
Standing still will divide us and eventually, it will destroy us. The average agency of the 2000's will not survive past 2025. We will thrive.
Why did we choose to rebrand?
It’s important to note that we are not now what we were when we once started. 5 years ago there were 4 of us, there are now over 40. We were based and operated within the UK, we are now global. The conversations we were having with clients offline, were not matching the conversations we were having with the wider world, online. In fact, new clients were often surprised when they met with us.
So why did it take us 5 years?
It could take 10, maybe 12 years. We’re not there yet.
We started our journey as an agency with an influx of “word of mouth” work. We got busy straight away, our logo was created within an hour, our site within an evening. Thankful and busy whilst deployed on client work, we never had the opportunity to explore our public layer. 2022 was the year we had the budget, and the team to look at us. The business has always known what we want, so it was time to get after it.
As we said, we’re not there yet. Deployment of our own website is always near impossible and we’re still only 50% right because our clients come first, but the tone, language and processes that were born from this rebrand, is something that is now implemented through all of our client work.
What came out of our rebrand?
When you are your own client, you get the opportunity to refine your own processes. 90% of our rebrand wasn’t about the site, it was about our team, our people, our work and our clients. Our tone and our words were to be used on our site as a mirror of the language we were using internally every single day. Some things we expressed in our new brand were divisive. Extraordinary is bold, and it is something we all believed in, but this didn’t suit everyone.
The other key reason for our rebrand was a study of our own team. We asked “what do you say you do in the pub, and who for?” - what they said was not represented on the site, we weren’t selling ourselves the way our team were selling themselves and our collective capabilities. The website should have made them proud and working at Ecrubox should mean something. At that point, our site did the opposite.
The original logo was made in an hour, we now spent days on the logo and colours.
“Ecrubox Digital” meant our original logo included the word "digital". It became apparent that we are NOT only masters of digital. It goes without saying that almost all Ecommerce requires digital, it’s simply evolution of the industry. So digital was dropped and it was time to explore the colour scheme.
Our colour scheme divided the team when exploring the re-brand. But soon enough, united us. We recognise that we are a woman-first agency, with powerful female leadership and our old colours leaned towards this feminity. But we don’t have stereotypical feminine outcomes. Female-led shouldn’t mean pink websites. We, therefore, became brighter and bolder. We added hints of green for a subtle camouflage, recognising our all-inclusive front line.
Who we are talking to
We needed a tone of voice that was truly us. We have never been a small town agency, our clients are global, we are global, and the way we talk is global. We, therefore, vowed to echo the terminology and tone that was naturally used within our agency. To mimic the public voices of our teams.
Our new mantra
Only The Extraordinary Will Thrive- it's our slogan, but it is our business plan in one sentence and we mean it.
With new AI technologies poking into day to day operations of marketing, we truly believe, it is only extraordinary human input and creativity that will ensure the human side of marketing will thrive in the future. It’s now us, vs bots. Only the extraordinary will thrive.
Here’s how we did it (simply).
- Innovation Phase
The innovation phase was about pausing the day to day work. We needed to cut through the noise to find the true needs and values that link the incredible people who select to work together here. This innovation phase was a piece of audience research more than anything else. We held consultations with every team leader, our clients, industry sector leaders and those that sit on our board. The innovation phase will sometimes cause business owners to fall off the bike, it certainly did ours, but part of that is to realise maybe they should have never been on a bike, innovation sometimes suggests a Tesla.
- Identity Phase
The identity phase is more conceptual, it involves turning feedback and noise into visual and textual concrete messaging. It’s all about finding the hero and in our case we did this literally. There has always been a hero at Ecrubox, therefore why not play with that idea on our homepage.
From a tech point of view, we wanted the flexibility, speed and efficiencies that come with headless technology. This always brings a pivot in the way tech and design work together. It wasn’t painless. It will be next time, on yours.
- Execution Phase
This is the complicated one when building a house, or a brand. There are things you learn along the way and people to consult that aren’t in the room. Experts are always welcome here to pivot our knowledge. It was a dual process, guiding the coding, design and new vision, whilst concurrently teaching those that are working on it, why the pivot is necessary. Our deployment culminated into all-company sessions, where we talked about the hero within and agreed upon an alliance, where the three A’s came to life. We pledged to the three things that truly define us. Being Ambitious, Assertive & Authentic. Sounds cult-like, but all we did was choose to frame the beliefs we already held.
Ecrubox Digital became Ecrubox.
Totalling our brand meant knowing what we want and who we want to be. Although it gave life to processes and documents, it was truly about refining the core of our business. The rebrand was about what we aren’t, just as much as what we are. We’ve changed the way we recruit, the way we reward and the way that we live as a breathing unit.
The totalling of Ecrubox wasn’t just about coming up with logos, it was a multi layer process, called “Soul of the Brand”. More to come on that, it’s unique to our process and you’re going to adore it.
We can’t wait to see what 2023 and beyond brings for Ecrubox but we know already that it will be more true to our origin. Follow us on socials to stay up to date with everything marketing and e-commerce. We’ve got you.
Alex Sass, Head of Magic & Mia Coombs, Social Media & Content Executive