We're always pushing ourselves, and our clients, to do better at every stage of the strategic and creative branding journey.
It may sound obvious, but we're not so sure that everyone shares our values and believes in doing things properly. We don't believe in cutting corners. We're not very good at being ok with 'good enough'. This approach can be a bit demanding for some people. We work best with clients who are tired of the same old industry standards and fired up to create something new and challenge what's already out there.
We've also helped clients do better with their business models and investor decks. Branding cuts deep, and if done well, can (and should) influence every aspect of your business. A good business plan with a clear understanding of early adopter consumers, and a realistic venture capital strategy, are essential for the long term success of many start-ups.
Every new project starts with a blank roll of paper and a brand workshop that's built on 3 simple questions: What? How? Why? Simon Sinek's 'Golden Circle' TED Talk does a great job of explaining how Apple uses the same approach to maintain a strong brand. It's a tried and tested technique that always gets results, so we don't see any need to change it:
Why? - the emotional reason to believe in the brand (why it exists)
How? - the process that brings the brand to life and makes it unique (how it's made)
What? - the list of products or services on offer (what it does)
The workshops enable us to really get under the skin of founders and gain insights into their companies. More importantly it allows us to start the process of stripping back all the different layers of clutter, stuff and noise that plague most brands. We believe that a key part of our role is to help founders get to the core essence of their brand and help them bring it to life in a new way. To do this we need to be quite ruthless when working out what needs to stay and what needs to go. We usually throw out a lot more than we keep. The BTL team all share a 'less is more' mindset: a very simple but effective mantra that we've borrowed from the no-nonsense modernist architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
"Working with BTL has surpassed my expectations. Stu and Santeri have a rare combination of talent and work ethic, and they are a pleasure to work with. They push you to be the best. They have an acute eye for detail and their "less is more" approach has challenged us to do better. They have created a unique approach to branding which delivers a very authentic, coherent and easy to understand message. I could not have dreamed of a better partner to help launch my new brand and I am looking forward to working with them on our next chapter together."
Bastien Bouisset, Founder, Chapter 2
We've got plenty of experience working with established brands, but we most enjoy the challenge of creating something new, or reinventing something that needs a new start. Over the last few years we've helped entrepreneurs secure investment and launch new start-up brands in many different sectors including travel, logistics, fashion, beauty, technology, audio, food, drink, wellbeing, fitness, football, language, architecture & retail:
“We see BTL as our in-house brand department. Although we're located in different parts of Sweden, and BTL in London, they always feel close & are just a Skype-call away.
BTL doesn’t only do what we tell them, they take an active role in building our brand as they feel part of our company. Showing responsibility in doing smart and cost effective proposals for all aspects of strategy, development and production. As a designer it’s usually my role to ‘think outside the box’, pushing and questioning ideas and coming up with new concepts. BTL push things even further, letting me contribute with my knowledge of the business to fine tune the ideas to fit the company and budget.
BTL is a full service creative studio with sharp eyes and smart concepts, always pushing us, and themselves, to do better and delivering beyond expectations.”
Timo Engström, Co-Founder & CEO, Engström