Chief Creative Office℠ is a strategic consultancy founded on the belief that it's increasingly difficult for a single mind or department to hold the breadth of knowledge necessary to sustain creative leadership in modern business.
Conceived as a Think/Make-Tank for Business Leaders who own the responsibility of building consistency between product, market and operations within highly dynamic markets – CCO defined brand building for the modern age in the seminal thinking published in the white paper 'Brands as Patterns'. In the paper we proposed that as Brands are increasingly accessed through digital interfaces it will require that they're defined iteratively through successive releases and behaviorally through interactions. We shared the insight that through this digital interface the customer will assume the right to some control, ownership, and authorship of the brand. And as the digital world evolves, the customer’s ability to inform the brand will outstrip the company’s ability to control it.
It's now clear that Brand Loyalty has been superseded by Interface Loyalty. Customers no longer gain Brand affinity through message or belief alone, they also subscribe to services, rely on ecosystems, invest content, share thinking, all with an unparalleled access which is perpetual and immediate. In fact Brand Product and Service have become so entwined it simply makes no sense to talk about them separately, or to hire a specific consultancy to serve just one aspect. Our mission is to help you put branding within your product rather than just on it. We believe that defining a brand in a more volatile world should be done in quick successive, low-investment sprints which are more closely aligned with product release cycles, and the dynamic nature of the market.
So, we've formed the definitive process for Iterative Brand Building – enabling our clients to highlight the interdependencies between Product and Message and we provide the expertise to harness the power of that alignment. We have learnt how to create brands at the speed of the market and help clients market at the speed of their product. Our Brand Pattern Process creates relationships between Business Strategy, Operation Insight, Product Development, Product Visioning & Prototyping and Brand Strategy, Market Analysis, User Experience design, Brand Identity, UI/System Design and Marketing that is both consistent and relevant. We passionately believe that the overlaps between disciplines and departments have become as important to business success as the skills and knowledge which define each of them.
But we're not just saying this, our entire business model is defined by it. Our approach allows us to remain flexible and nimble enough to inform, extend or augment internal strategic decision making but stay structured enough to offer the rigor and process of a project-based design consultancy. CCO is a completely new kind of company designed from the ground up to scale to the needs of projects that are beyond the bandwidth or core competency of internal teams. Our model enables us to provide the objectivity and insight of an external consultant while executing with the passion and commitment of an employee.
Marc Shillum FRSA, MARCA has helped conceive, design and launch some of the world’s most successful products and brands such as HBOGO, Nike Fuel, B&N nook, Discovery Digital Networks, RH, Nokia viNe and The Aston Martin Rapide. He also advises and invests in category-redefining startups like SoftKinetic, Onlive and Canary.
Marc has held leadership positions in world-class tech-led innovation, design, publishing and marketing organizations. He was CXO of Matternet which received the World Economic Forum's Technology Pioneer Award in 2015. He was Head of Global Brand at Experience Design Company Method which was acquired by Apax Partners. He founded R/GA's ground breaking Brand Development Group. And he has been a Creative Director at some of the most revered agencies in the world including Wieden+Kennedy and BBH and was mentored by some of the World's greatest designers at Studio Dumbar with Gert Dumbar and M&Co with Tibor Kalman.
Marc has received many awards as a designer, writer, creative director, and strategist. His experience has given him unique insight into how to build strong, empathetic, cross functional teams that thrive on solving complex and fluid problems
How to Engage us
We have four flexible models of engagement:
Meeting for a Cup of Tea
We famously named Canary in Blue Bottle Coffee in San Francisco. Adam Sager CEO of Canary said: "Marc is a visionary. Anyone who has met him knows exactly what I am talking about. The ability to distill complicated thought to it's core is a rare talent. A conversation over coffee with Marc could change the course of your company. Engaging him is transformative."
This can be an informal meeting, or more structured monthly or weekly sessions.
Facilitating a Work-Session.
Using the tools distilled from our proprietary Brand Pattern Process, we lead one-to-two-day team sessions on a variety of subjects including: Product to Market Fit, Positioning, Brand Architecture, Messaging, Customer Engagement, Customer Journey Mapping, Product Benefits, Brand Attributes, Key Data Points, Cross Department Road-Mapping, Audience Segmentation, Product Naming, Naming Taxonomy and Nomenclature.
Asaf Sadowsky CEO of SpiceBox Labs said: "Marc helped us consider industry’s future and articulate our value proposition in new ways that are attuned to what our customers are looking for. We experienced an immediate positive impact on our marketing efforts, reflected through conversations with prospective customers that turned into paying customers shortly after."
We have facilitated Work -Sessions for some of the World’s most prestigious brands including Lego, eBay, Discovery, Microsoft, LuckyBrand and Restoration Hardware and some of the most cutting- edge startups like GoPro, Molecule, Canary, Neura and Matternet.
Engaging for a Project Sprint
Our Project Sprints can range from 1 to 6 weeks, they can be scheduled consecutively, organized to break for Testing & Research or be structured as a traditional project engagement with a start-date and end date.
We will employ a core team dedicated to just your project. This creates the greatest focus and correct conditions to buildbrain trust between client and consultant teams. Because our model provides flexibility we're able to scale or descale a team depending on project need.
We're happy to work onsite, adjacent offsite (building a space), virtually, or a mix of all three. We ran Project Sprints with eBay, Discovery and Adobe which ranged from Research, to Product Visioning and Brand Identity.
Embedding on an ongoing retainer
Unlike the conventional understanding of a retainer, Chief Creative Office prefers to engage in micro-retainers with clients. These small-fee micro-retainers allow us to stay involved with the changing nature of the problem. Having both an Objective and Subjective View has proven invaluable in helping our clients respond to market developments and anticipate change. We have ongoing retainers with Neura.
Chief Creative Office