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News and views

Here's a selection of our latest articles on marketing, design and digital issues, and our latest news. If you would like to add an opinion or join the debate please do leave a comment. If you would like to find out more please click the link to the author.

20 things we?「どィび「ve done

To mark our 20th anniversary, we’ve looked back in time and pulled out some of the projects we’ve completed, or been involved in, and have been publishing, through our social media channels on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook, snippets on each one.


Nice things people have said about us

Nice things people have said about us

We value our clients. They ARE our business! Our team have always worked hard to build and maintain relationships and we want to be sure all our clients get not only what they want, but what they need to help their business. We also value results and continuing relationships whilst we are still adding value.  

So we went and asked some of our contacts and clients for something we could use to help mark this milestone and we’ve had some great feedback! 

Here’s what they say about working with us.

“Preview guided and assisted hennessyHR with re-branding as well as creating and developing our website. Preview were passionate about ensuring every detail was as it should be and we are delighted with the results. hennessyHR would recommend Preview without hesitation to other companies wishing to re-brand or re-launch their website”

Lucille Hennesy, Hennessy HR

“NetSense have been providing Preview with IT support for a couple of years and I am proud of the working relationship that we have. The work they do is outstanding and I do not hesitate to recommend them to any of our clients who are looking for marketing, branding or website development”.

James Newbury, Netsense

“Having set Management Inspirations Limited up in 2004, I met Nick Broom shortly afterwards who very clearly explained to me the value of great branding. By 2005 Preview had created a focused brand for my company together with business cards and letterheads. It soon became clear that a meaningful brand creates professionalism, respect, identity and status. I continue to use and recommend Preview to this day – a strong brand that creates strong brands. Congratulations on the first 20 years”.

Robert Carpenter FCA FIoD FRSA, Management Inspirations

“Preview have been an absolute pleasure to work with over the years. Their attentiveness to our requirements and brand has produced excellent design which has undoubtedly given Ski France an image which we have been able to build upon ever since”.

Phillip Morris-Simpson, Ski France

“Gatwick Diamond Business have worked with Preview over recent years starting with the creation of the branding & style for the successful Gatwick Diamond Business Awards. Preview recently worked on the design for some corporate branding on our company car and we were delighted with the results. I would not hesitate to recommend them as we have always been pleased with the results”.

Jeremy Taylor, Gatwick Diamond Business Association

“I wanted to thank the team at Preview for helping us with our brand, stationery, brochures and website over the last 15 years. I have found you guys keen, attentive and quick to respond to my requests. Great work. Well done. Highly recommended!”

Akwasi Duodu, Sterling and Law

“I have been working with Nick and the Preview team since 2007; they have always adopted a professional and ethical approach that is always combined with business understanding and that essential creativity needed to deliver true value and differentiation for their customers. Preview are a reliable, and responsive organisation that puts the customer first; customer service is their highest priority.  I've recommended Preview to a number of organisations in the past and will happily continue to do so in the future.  I know they will not let me down.” 

Phil Thomson, Advantage Consulting

“Time constraints meant we had to heavily rely on Preview to work on our website re-design based on the limited information we provided, they excelled and were also able to work within our time frame – would highly recommend.”

Scott Horne, Lakeside Films

"IMA International has a long history of Preview working on redesigning our website through to designing our annual training and consultancy brochure and course factsheets.  We, and importantly our customers are very happy with these products. Best wishes for your 20th anniversary Preview!"

Chris Grose,  IMA International

"As secretary of REMA I have known the Preview team for well over two years and in this time they have always provided me with a flawless service. On several occasions they have delivered to tight deadlines at very short notice whilst staying within their original cost estimates. The individuals with whom I have become acquainted with have always been polite, friendly and very eager to help and as a result I look forward to continuing to use Previews excellent services for many years to come."

Andy Pledge, REMA

So, if you are thinking of getting your website working, giving your marketing a makeover, or your branding bolstered – please send us a brief, or come and talk to us – we’d love to work with you.


Preview celebrates 20 year anniversary

Preview celebrates 20 year anniversary

Wow, twenty years, already!?

Time really does fly when you are having fun! It seems barely possible that it was way back in 1994 that I was setting up and now Preview is celebrating its 20th year in business.

It’s certainly been a journey; full of highs and lows, challenges and changes, but, to reach a milestone like this is something of which I am truly proud.

When Preview started there really wasn’t much known or publicised about this thing called the Internet, mobile phones were barely mobile, and faxes were still de rigeur.

Preview has adapted and changed to the different communication channels available, and we’ve achieved some fantastic projects over the years, thanks to a loyal and hardworking team, self-belief and humility.

We will be taking a glance back at projects and milestones over the past 20 years this month, so please look out for updates on our social channels and join in with the conversation and our celebration! 

Thank you so much to all our great customers, colleagues and friends who’ve travelled with this vehicle called Preview through the years, and here’s to the next stage in our journey. We are ready.

Now, where’s that cake knife?


Art D?「どィび「Signs joins PVL for Higher Visibility!

Art D?「どィび「Signs joins PVL for Higher Visibility!

Burgess Hill based sign writers Art D’Signs have joined PVL UK and Preview as part of the ongoing growth of the specialist graphics, marketing and visual communications group.

Since 1975 Art D’Signs has been producing and installing high quality signage and vehicle graphics throughout Sussex and further afield. From traditional hand-painted signage to comprehensive modular sign systems, interior graphics and custom vehicle signage they are well known for their expertise and service.

As the UK’s leading manufacturer of reflective and specialist graphics for emergency service and highways vehicles, PVL also offer fleet wrapping and branding services to clients throughout the UK.

PVL already supply the entire Scottish and Welsh Police forces following successful recent tender wins. Preview worked closely with PVL to produce and apply a 1000 strong fleet of “snow leopard” vans as well as high profile “Harry Potter” bus wraps recently.

Preview and PVL are already based in adjacent offices in Victoria Way, Burgess Hill and the Art D’Signs team will relocate to PVL’s old premises a few hundred yards away.

Nick Broom, Managing Director of PVL and Preview said “We are excited that our combined experience in all areas of visual communication enables us to extend a versatile range of services to our growing customer base.”

PVL

PVL UK is the respected market leader in Emergency Services vehicle livery, producing bespoke reflective vehicle kits and fleet vehicle wraps and livery to clients all over the UK, Ireland and beyond in materials supplied by industry leaders 3M and Avery. 

Established in 2000, PVL comprises a team of people with their own expertise in manufacturing, sales and customer service. Customers are in both the public and private sectors and include Police, Fire and Ambulance services, Local Authorities, fleet operators, highway maintenance and sign shops. Customers are provided fast turnaround for their graphics, either supply only or fitted, with fitting offered throughout the UK. Reflective products are made to order from a vast and growing library of bespoke vehicle data covering every type of vehicle.

PVL have their own large-format printers enabling them to produce graphics on a wide range of materials for a huge range of surfaces including interior and exterior walls, floors and windows. For more information, see www.pvluk.com

Art D’Signs

Art D’Signs provides a wide range of sign, livery and creative solutions including vehicle graphics, banners, fascias, window graphics and shop fronts supplied and fitted to clients in the South East of England. A small team of experienced specialists with a wealth of knowledge and an understanding of the client’s needs, their customers are in the public and private sectors and range from local builders and individuals to large commercial corporations, shops, charities, councils, schools and colleges.

Art D’Sign’s customers require quality and reliability, problems solving, advice and prompt turnaround. Projects begin with a site visit and survey where required, with creative visuals provided before work commences. The range of their services and recent projects are revealed at www.artdsigns.co.uk


Supporting Dance Proms 2012

Supporting Dance Proms 2012

Due to our very close working relationship with the Royal Academy of Dance, having designed and developed their Faculty of Education and e-commerce websites, we are delighted to be supporting Dance Proms 2012. This unique and exciting event celebrates the wealth of talent among the nation's young dancers and culminates in a gala performance at the Royal Albert Hall on 4th November.

Dance Proms was launched last year to find the UK and Irelands most talented dance students - in all dance genres, from ballet to ballroom, salsa to street dance and jive to jazz dance - and offer them a unique opportunity to perform on stage at one of the worlds most prestigious venues. It is supported by dozens of top names from the dance world and Dance Proms patrons include Anton Du Beke & Erin Boag, Darren Bennett & Lilia Kopylova, Matt Flint, Chris Hollins, Len Goodman, Wayne Sleep OBE and the RADs President Darcey Bussell CBE.

This years 450 students will go on to perform alongside guest appearances from Strictly Come Dancings Darren Bennett & Lilia Kopylova. Find out more about Dance Proms at www.danceproms.co.uk and book tickets here.

 


Hot (foot) off the press..

Hot (foot) off the press..

Excitement at the PVL and Preview offices today when I had a pair of my shoes wrapped orange!

After attending a networking meeting on behalf of Nick, I explained that I had trouble describing to people what PVL and Preview did, especially when it comes to wrapping things! Nick then came up with the idea to wrap a pair of my shoes in the company’s brand so that next time I was asked what we do I could point at my shoes and say “we can brand ANYTHING”. I refer to myself as  a “Shoe Enthusiast” and I am thrilled with my newly wrapped shoes. Fitter Lee did a fantastic job on wrapping them, although he is now concerned that his new role will be to wrap my shoes each morning to match my outfit! The feedback already from people who have seen the shoes is fantastic. At PVL we really can wrap anything!


'Brand Me'

'Brand Me'

The last five years have heralded the era of ‘public me’! We can’t help it – we already exist in the e-cosphere (have you ever tried Googling your name?).

And there are those who long to publish on every available platform and those who despise such flagrant self-publicity as pure vanity.

Given that these days, your personal brand profile (or ‘reputation score’) has become an important way in which you determine the impact you make – have you considered how you are going to influence what is seen or said about you? 

Features of a brand
Here are some things we know about brands:

  • Brands have meaning
  • They are well recognised
  • Brands have a personality
  • Brands are attractive
  • They command a price premium
  • They represent a short-cut for quality
  • Brands have long-term value

Is this true of you? What is your personal brand and what does it communicate about you?

Selling your service
The way in which we ‘place’ our trust in professionals has altered in the 21st Century, and whilst credentials and word-of-mouth reputation are still key factors, the mechanisms for developing these are now more profoundly linked to our ‘online reputation / publicity’ than ever before.

Top 10 criteria for selecting a service provider
The following list provides a useful checklist to assess your own performance but it is NOT in any particular order because of the differences between services:

  1. Previous experience (industry and functional)
  2. Qualifications and membership of professional associations
  3. Understanding of nature of problem / sensitivity to needs
  4. Testimonials of previous satisfied clients
  5. Personality and integrity
  6. Fees incl. transparency
  7. Clarity about deliverables and results
  8. Communication and presentation skills
  9. Responsiveness 
  10. Quality, reach and accessibility of published material

We have long-standing experience with several of our clients who sell their expertise as a service (lawyers, insolvency practitioners, recruitment consultants, accountants, academic professors, hairdressers, HR consultants, trainers, teachers to name a few) and all have to consider how they express ‘brand me’. Typically, one of their biggest challenges is how to produce high quality published material that reaches the right target audience and is cost effective.

Quality, reach and accessibility of published material (content management)
Your brand reputation is now being determined in part by what you choose to publish – from Twitter posts, to LinkedIn discussions, blogs, newsletters, videos on You Tube or podcasts on your website, Q&A forums, case studies, white papers or even webinars. Whilst this list can feel overwhelming, we have successfully helped many of our clients develop and implement a media rich ‘content’ plan – and often it is just one small step at a time, helping them to reach new clients and influencers.

If you don’t have the time to plan, write or publish – but you are keen to develop your brand presence, give me a call on 01273 834434 to have a no-obligation chat as to how we can help.

Extract from presentation by Liz Barnes to Institute of Consulting – 21st June 2011


Protecting Your Brand

Protecting Your Brand

Building value
Just 3 months ago, Google’s brand was valued at a cool $111.5 billion. But what is fascinating about the Google brand, is that its typography changes almost daily and is indeed recognisable without any lettering – remember the outstanding tribute Google made to Les Paul?

Your brand should become your customer’s belief in what you stand for as a company. A strong brand enables you to charge a little bit more, be sold through more channels and be the product / service of choice because of its quality, reliability and reputation. This ‘little bit more’ spread across a wider customer base, who have a higher loyalty translates into incremental future cash flow i.e. building brand equity. And this is one of the best ways to create long-term value for shareholders.

What to protect
A picture paints a thousand words and your logo offers an immediate link to your organisation, with all of the positive emotions associated with it. So you need to think about how to protect your brand – the name, logo, design features, strapline to prevent it being copied or misused by another organisation.

In terms of visual identity, you can think of the brand as composing these different elements, all of which need protecting;

  1. The brand name. Made up names (e.g. Google) are more protectable than everyday names (e.g. Apple, Orange, Blackberry). But you will need to check that the name hasn’t been previously registered, and indeed that it makes sense and conveys the right messages to your customers.
  2. Strapline. An important way to summarise the key buying proposition and can be incorporated in the brand / logo design.
  3. Logo. This may or may not use the brand name and is an icon which is consistently used wherever the product / service or company name is depicted.
  4. Styling. Colours, fonts and layout all add to your visual identity. It is better to use a Brand Manual to avoid the inevitable desire of staff to edit these elements as they see fit. 

How to protect
Here at Preview, we have teamed up with Future Copyright to help make it easier for you to protect your visual identity. The more supporting proof of your brand, logo, and its use that you can evidence the better.

Historically, the only way was to formally lodge or register your brand with a professional agent / safe-keeper such as a bank, document archive or 'copyright offices'. As copyright, by definition, comes into being automatically, you are not required to register your material at all but in doing so, you now have more solid formal proof that can be legally evidenced if required.

Registering your copyright by the ways suggested above, although effective, can be archaic, laborious, and expensive. Although you get a certificate of your registration, your material remains locked away in a dead end, black box filing system – to the point that you may not exactly remember what the material was you filed in the first place! What’s more you may be charged to obtain a copy of your materials and some file services will periodically re-charge you a subscription cost you to keep your files on record. 

Future Copyright offers a far more efficient versatile solution that puts powerful authentication and management of your copyrighted works completely under your full retention and control with direct interfacing for licensing and publishing – all at a fraction of the price of standard services. From £1.25 per file it is also cheaper than sending your work you yourself in an envelope! 

If you’d like to give Future Copyright a try we can offer you a special promo code that will give you 5 free credits, just contact Liz@preview.co.uk or 01273 834434 to find out more about how we can help you copyright your brand.


East Sussex County Council Careers4U App hits the iTunes App Store

East Sussex County Council Careers4U App hits the iTunes App Store

The newest addition to our growing digital portfolio has gone live on the iTunes App Store after passing Apple's strict development guidelines. The 'Careers 4U' App, commissioned by East Sussex County Council, has been designed and developed to get young people between the ages of 14 and 18 to start thinking about the wide range of careers available to them once they leave school or college. The iOS application is free to download and use so if you have an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch, please make sure you take a look at the Careers4U App now.

We're continually focused on keeping up-to-date with the growing possibilities that electronic based applications bring to our clients and the creative industry in general. Be sure to keep up-to-date by coming back to our site regularly as it makes for some interesting reading.


Movember: Five taches and a little lady

Movember: Five taches and a little lady

During November we'll be joining the growing club of modern gentlemen (and ladies) who believe in the virtues of fine moustachery.

We've all decided to donate our faces (and Julie's legs) to raising awareness about prostate cancer, as one man dies every hour in the UK from the disease. From the 1st of Movember (formerly known as November) the guys in the office will be growing their chosen style of moustaches and the girls will be letting their leg hair grow wild! We're asking colleagues, friends and family to donate to the worthy cause.

If you'd like to sponsor us or keep up to date with our progress then just follow the link to our team page.

 


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