Behind the brand

By Tom,

August 2017

Welcome to the Toward of 2017. We just turned fifteen and to mark the occasion we’ve relaunched… well, almost everything.

So, what’s the story?

Our old identity and brand personality has served us well—helping us on the way to over a decade of growth, attracting some of the best talent in the industry and setting the foundation for us to be a leading agency. But, it just wasn’t us any longer.

It was full of fun, quirkiness, creativity and youthful exuberance. But, we’ve changed. We’ve grown up. Those qualities are still there, but over the last few years we’ve become much more focused on strategy, digital and how we can help clients disrupt.

Our new brand is exactly who we are now. Challenging and bold. It reflects everything about our culture, our approach to design and business, and our ambition for the future.

New Toward animation

How did we tackle it?

Well, just like we tackle any brand repositioning project. Over the last 12 months we’ve run internal workshops to find out what type of agency we want to be. We’ve interviewed clients and partners to uncover what they think of us. We’ve analysed our business and services, to help give us clarity about the type of work we want to be doing.

With a clear vision and strategy in place we’ve done all the usual stuff to make that change a reality...

Our logo

I suppose the biggest change for us has been our logo. Our first version was designed in about twenty minutes, about 24hs after Mike and I set up shop in my parents spare room in July 2002. They say if you’re not embarrassed by the first version of a digital product, you’ve launched too late. Same goes for logos I guess 😬

We ended up flattening and simplifying it pretty quickly before redrawing it completely in 2007. Better.

Ten years is a long time for a logo to last, but the time had come for a change. The bubbly, cheeky young agency days are behind us and now, so is the logo.

The new logo is us. Bold, strong, challenging and a bit weird. It’s Marmite. Some will hate it, some will like it. But, that’s the point. Who wants a brand that’s bland enough for everyone to like?

Toward logo evolution 2002-2017


Our new identity system is also a much better representation of who are now. Big, bold, unconventional and challenging.

Images of the new Toward brand style


The most obvious (to us) misalignment of our old brand was how it positioned us—as multidisciplined creatives. We’ve been more than that for a while, we just weren’t saying it.

Our new, more accurate positioning is exactly right. We do creative work, but that’s the output. The input is far more important to us, and the companies we work with. We’re not brought in to make something look better. We’re brought in to solve a problem. Digital and brand strategy, internal engagement, business process analysis, audience understanding and messaging are the first things we do with clients.

Toward positioning—Digital branding agency


Our company culture has always been hugely important to myself and Mike as leaders (in fact, we gave it its own page). We want the best people in our team, so we need to give them the best environment to grow in. Energetic, driven, hard working, hard playing and challenging. That’s us.

For the first time we’ve documented it. Our culture handbook helps everyone in the team focus on what we’re creating together.

Images from the Toward Culture handbook

The website

Well you're here, so I won't go too into too much detail. Suffice to say, designing and developing this new site has been by far the biggest challenge. It's filled with new content about what we do, it highlights some of the key problems we've solved, and we've added some great new posts to our writing section. It's still a work in progress and there's more good stuff to come. Take a look around.

So there we have it... That's Toward in 2017. It's been a long journey, and a lot of blood, sweat and tears. Well, mainly meetings, talking and coding. Okay, some tears. We're sure the new brand and website will evolve, like they all should. But, for now—we're pretty happy.