Reflecting on our rebrand: 12 months of renewed identity   

We love getting to help our clients rebrand. As organisations grow and evolve, sometimes their brand identity needs to change to reflect that growth.  

And one year ago, we decided it was time for us to renew our own identity! 

The rebranding process 

I’ve often been the Cinderella behind a re-brand or branding process. I’m the one gathering the post-it notes, nodding and smiling at the vast, varied and sometimes polarised feedback… before pulling it all together and finding a sense of strategic direction. 

I’m not the designer creating the beautiful things, but the smoother of ruffled feathers. The solutions finder, miracle magician and at times, compromise maker. (I’m not sure I’m allowed to use “floofer” in a professional context but that’s kind of how I see my role…My professional body prefers to call it “boundary spanning” and taking a “strategic management role”.) 

Early last year, we embarked on our own rebrand journey at Agile. I say we, because like raising children, it really does take a village. And like raising children, it has been exciting, exhausting, uncomfortable, anxiety-inducing but ultimately pride-making. 

How it started 

When I started my business, I was an independent Chartered PR practitioner and very happy on my tod, smashing out press releases in my pyjamas. I was also working as an associate tutor for CIPR qualifications (in Manchester. Interesting commute!) as well as feature writing for the Scrum Alliance. 

I came up with the name whilst stuck in traffic on the M5 coming back from Bristol. It seemed so obvious, given my love of agile working, collaborating, and responding to change. And it did the job beautifully for a decent while. I am hugely appreciative to Matt Hollands who delivered for me when I was running the business on a shoestring. 

But there came a point in 2022 when this business was not just about me, and not just about public relations. 

By this time, I had been teaching the PESO model (Paid, Earned, Shared, Owned) to the PR community for six or more years. My practice had moved far beyond media relations/earned media and how clients perceive PR. 

Through my team of incredible associates, we were offering branding and naming, communications strategy, digital marketing, website design and build, advertising (both traditional and digital), email marketing, social media, copywriting – a full spectrum of services, coaching and mentoring. 

PR was probably 10% of our output. I describe what we do as Integrated Communications. It’s a bit of a mouthful and absolutely not what our clients are asking for. 

So we started to explore the potential for a new trading name, and a new way of expressing it. 

How it went 

Frankly, The Agile Communications Agency wouldn’t be out there so vibrantly in the world if it wasn’t for my right hand woman, Lyssa, or my left hand man, Alex. 

Lyssa was in her full Kraken era at this point, and we were collaborating on some epic projects. There was no one I trusted more for the discovery work than her. I commissioned Lyssa to support with a new website, and as part of this she took me through the full Discovery workshop and asked all the big questions about our clients, how they think and why they need us. 

Not gonna lie, it was hard turning the brand piece back on myself and my business. It felt exposing and adulty. 

The Hutch guys have been like work brothers since around 2017 when we both located at co-working space OurDistrickt. Alex entrusts me to look after his fur babies, and I entrusted him with my brand. They also look after the branding and design work for some of my highest profile and challenging clients. 

I knew I wanted to expand the colour palette and inject some sunshine. 

I’d commissioned some brand profile photography from Rosie Parsons, and for that, I’d injected some yellow (only after I had been getting lots of compliments for a yellow top, quite vain really!). 

Alex also introduced the juicy Kelly green we have in our brand pallet – the four colours are so versatile and high-vibe. 

At the brand reveal for this identity, it was overwhelmingly supported. 

 

How’s it going 

Now we’re one year on from our rebrand and we’re thrilled with the results. Since unveiling our new identity we’ve seen a significant impact on our business.  

We created two new jobs, which has fuelled our growth and brought fresh energy to our projects.  

Charla Symons, Rachel Foster, and Lyssa-Fêe Crump smile as they celebrate Lyssa joining as the new Head of Digital.

Charla joined us in April 2023 just ahead of our brand unveil and website launch. The most humbling thing about hiring Charla was she asked me to describe our company culture, and I couldn’t. The best I could do was send her a Cameo video of Tom Read-Wilson and it kind of sealed the deal. 

But we’ve known each other professionally for more than 15 years so with her trust, I could dive into growth. 

Lyssa then joined us as a full-time, employed member of the Agile team. I created the role Head of Digital Marketing for her specifically. We still hold a lot of love for all things Kraken, and she brings that inimitable flair for copywriting and passion for data-diving to the Agile offer. 

One year later  

We’re still crunching the numbers but we’re looking at 50% growth in turnover, which is punchy! 

We have some projects we’re immensely proud of: 

  • Transition Plan Taskforce.
  • Tech Cornwall rebrand
  • Continued work with Truro Town Deal, including delivering a community engagement event
  • Supporting the British Antarctic Survey’s comms team with some Agile coaching and workflow support.
  • Queen Mary University of London – helping their School of Business and Management bring in more strategic communications approaches and work.
  • Continued work with Oxford Sustainable Finance Group – many beautiful research reports plus comms to support key events. 

Our new branding has not only revitalised our visual identity but also strengthened our team’s alignment and commitment to our mission. It’s been a transformative experience that has prepared us for even greater achievements ahead.   

What’s next for us? 

We’re planning for big things and have some more ambitious growth on the horizon.  

We’re expecting to create two new jobs over the next 12 months, so if you want to join our team keep your eyes peeled!  

We’re also continuing at pace on our B Corp journey. 

Agency wise, we love gnarly, complex issues and topics, often with a national or global influence. Our next exciting step will be to unleash the Agile Communications Academy by this July – we have a clear vision for who we want to support with our Agile coaching for comms pros, so watch this space. If you’re considering a rebrand, embrace the journey! And if you need a little help navigating it, get in touch! We’d love to help.