“Stan Hema are the right people to lead us towards the future.”
Our team of strategists has been supporting the digital agency Turbine Kreuzberg for three years. This does not just involve the Berlin firm’s brand but also topics such as digital patient files, construction industry 4.0, digital supply chains. I talked to Stephanie Kurz about strategy that matches the pace of the tech industry, complex challenges and the stability of brand elements.
June 15, 2020
A few facts first: Turbine wants to grow both quantitatively and qualitatively. The teamwork began in 2017 with brand strategy, employer brand and corporate identity. In 2020, we are now helping them achieve their goal with a new mission statement, a new communication strategy and an enhanced verbal identity.
Stephanie, if one of the most important characteristics of good strategists is fighting against automatisms, how does our team manage that with a client we have been working for as long as Turbine Kreuzberg?
By actually listening and looking, and being focused and awake. And not merely thinking: we know all about this, we’ve heard it all before. After all, trust and knowledge do not mean automatism. Things do not repeat themselves because the world is changing. The tech sector in particular, which Turbine belongs to, is changing rapidly. Digital patient files, construction industry 4.0, digital supply chains, these are all topics that Turbine Kreuzberg is promoting as a digital agency today. Other topics played a key role yesterday, or in this case in 2017. Even if the contacts are the same: they have new requirements. Not only are their tasks and problems different, they also formulate them differently.
“My work is characterised by a certain stubbornness.”
Stan Hema developed an employer brand including brand strategy for Turbine Kreuzberg in 2017, which our team of designers transformed into a corporate design and a website. What was the starting point in 2020?
Three years is an insanely long time in the tech industry. The speed of technological developments and the emergence and disappearance of service providers is breath-taking. Competitors or benchmarks that we considered three years ago no longer exist today. And of course Turbine has changed too. It has become more concentrated, professional. In 2017, what Turbine needed was to find the right employees, something that it was very successful at thanks to the employer brand. Now the challenge is to find the right projects for the next development step: qualitative and quantitative growth. We responded to this with a mission statement and communication strategy tailored to the target group, plus an enhanced verbal identity.
Did you use different methods for this to in 2017?
Of course, but that has less to do with Turbine and much more to do with Stan Hema. We’re evolving too. How Stan Hema looks at topics, how we lead processes, how we work on topics, what constellations we work in and what methods we use – that lives, grows. What remains, was and is the extremely close and good cooperation with Turbine. But our exchange has become more digital.
“You can only strategically develop a brand once you have established its core.”
Were you able to build on your work from three years ago?
Yes, because as strategists all of us at Stan Hema always strive to develop ideas that make a lasting impact. Our work is characterised by a certain stubbornness. A brand strategy cannot be a process of reinventing the wheel over and over again, but must rather concentrate on formulating a brand’s actual core. Turbine’s core is fixed, Stan Hema formulated it.
The strategic foundations, as we developed them in 2017, are therefore still largely valid. The strategic goals have of course changed, so we have reformulated them. But the essence of this enterprise, this brand, the way we have developed it, has not fun-damentally changed. That makes us proud.
Does that also apply to the brand elements?
Absolutely! They are strategic and steadfast in their own way. However, the way the individual elements are handled must be allowed to change: we revisited the communication, content, design of individual media and measures and verbal identity, and only adjusted or revised them if necessary. That doesn't mean that you have to completely redefine the basics, including colours, imagery, font.
“Brand elements are strategic and steadfast in their own way.”
Was the complexity of the tech industry a challenge?
Yeah, but a manageable one. As was the pace with which the industry is changing. All we needed to do was think and make decisions just as fast. It was helpful that Turbine brought us back on board with confidence. The statement was: Stan Hema has al-ready helped once, you are the right people to take us further into the future in the second stage.
Did you learn anything that we can apply to the next client? Many people equate plat-form economy with shopping and selling. But the topic is also “creating connections” and we will need this technology for this in the future. We found that very exciting.