Engine Room Design Thrash Client Targets by Doubling Their Turnover

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Design and branding agency, The Engine Room, are proving the impact of design on the bottom line, having contributed to their client's ambitious 5 year plan, by doubling their turnover in 2 after a re-brand.

When I first met the design associate I expected questions relating to colours and fonts. Instead they asked me about financial and business-related matters.

Just one month after they saw another client measure a 700% increase in new business generation, 12 months after their re-brand. The Engine Room once again can be measured by the results they generate, through their work with bespoke commercial surface designers, Interior Surfaces.

Interior Surfaces design, manufacture and install work surfaces and specialist surface applications for a number of different markets and applications. Their portfolio includes completed projects for Pizza Hut, Centre Parcs, York University and Sheffield Children's Hospital, as well as a number of smaller clients.

The brief put in front of The Engine Room was to reposition the business to appeal to larger commercial customers and to make the image of Interior Surfaces reflect their capabilities.

With their turnover doubling from £1.2 million to £2.4 million in 2 years, the 5 year plan put in place by Interior Surfaces has been shattered by much targeted help from the critically acclaimed team at The Engine Room.

After some initial input from the Design Council on the benefits of using design to aid growth, Interior Surfaces now clearly see its potential and importance as a business tool.

ENGINE ROOM DESIGN DOUBLES CLIENT TURNOVER IN 2 YEARS

Case Study: The Engine Room & Interior Surfaces
Engine Room Design beat client's 5 year plan by helping to doubling turnover in 2.

Client Background:
Established over 20 years ago, Interior Surfaces design, manufacture and install work surfaces and specialist surface applications for a number of different markets and applications. Their portfolio includes completed projects for Pizza hut, Centre Parcs, York University, and Sheffield Children's Hospital.

Working mainly in laminate and solid surface materials including Dupont Corian®*, they have an enviable reputation for quality craftsmanship, project management and delivery. They work mainly on a sub-contracted basis to building firms and also directly with their own client base.

Interior Surfaces also run a trade showroom, selling bespoke work surfaces to the general public.

The Problem:
Interior Surfaces were finding it increasingly difficult to win key contracts with the larger building firms. Despite being highly skilled within their sector, they did not have the confidence in their brand to spread the word of their capabilities, which also worked as a hindrance when approaching the more creative industries.

Support: The Design Council:
Design was not something Interior Surfaces would usually consider spending money on. However, after taking part in a 'Design Works'** workshop run by the Design Council they understood that a re-brand was necessary to reposition themselves in the marketplace. Interior Surfaces were allocated a design associate to mentor them through the process and received a grant through the programme.

Interior Surfaces Chairman, Arthur Mackenzie, said of the design process: "When I first met the design associate I expected questions relating to colours and fonts. Instead they asked me about financial and business-related matters." He adds, "The project has totally transformed my view of marketing and branding."

The Engine Room were one of the three design agencies that were invited to pitch and went on to win the account, proving to Interior Surfaces the importance of design and permanently transforming their views of it as a crucial business tool.

The Brief:
To reposition the business to appeal to larger commercial customers.

To make the image of the business reflect its capabilities, especially in its appeal to the Solid Surface Fabrications market, most notably the healthcare and education sector.

The Proposal:

To enhance the corporate brand identity to help attract larger clients and meet business objectives.

To base all branding around core Interior Surfaces values i.e. being experienced, knowledgeable and reliable, getting things done and taking the 'no job is too big' approach.

To form a new identity that is strong, highly visible and clearly recognisable amongst the competition.

To roll-out the brand across the website, literature and stationery.

To design tactical marketing campaigns aimed at raising awareness within industry.

The Results:
Since the re-brand Interior Surfaces' turnover doubled within 2 years, going from £1.2m to £2.4m, exceeding their 5 year plan.

Interior Surfaces have successfully won new contracts with larger clients. They have also entered new markets and sectors which has broadened their customer base including several high profile jobs. Interior Surfaces are now perceived as specialist Corian® fabricators, working directly with designers, architects and interior specialists who are commissioning more and more projects using this incredibly versatile material. Prior to the re-brand they never had chance to work this close with the end users.

Their new image has given them the confidence to approach these creative industries due to having such a strong brand behind them.

Their view of design as a business tool has been permanently changed through their involvement with the Design Council programme and working with The Engine Room. Design is now seen as a valued asset.

Zoe Dickinson, Interior Surfaces Sales Manager, said of The Engine Room: "The Engine Room have exceeded our expectation of working with a design agency. They have managed this by taking an interest in our business and always listening to our concerns. They have a genuinely bespoke approach and have come up with solutions to fit our needs precisely. The figures speak for themselves. The Engine Room have brought a sense of what we are able to achieve to Interior Surfaces, backed up by solid design ideas which have transformed our image, not just externally, but within the business too."

Future Plans:
The Engine Room continue to build their relationship with Interior Surfaces and will be working closely to continue the growth strategy. More work will be done to increase brand awareness within the interior design market including the possibility of launching Interior Surfaces' first product. A new website aimed at domestic customers is planned for imminent launch.

Darren Evans, Creative Director of The Engine Room said: "We have thoroughly enjoyed working with the guys at Interior Surfaces over the last couple of years. They have embraced the design process so much that they have spotted other opportunities, resulting in an almost complete change of market direction. We are delighted with the results that have been achieved and are looking forward to working together in future."

For more information please visit http://www.engineroomdesign.com/.

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Amy Gregory
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