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Barber Jackson - A brief history

1991 – Simon Jackson, Adrian Barber and Christine Fairley formed Barber Jackson in the depth of that recession, more out of necessity than choice! The aim was to make a living, doing what we enjoy and satisfying client requirements. Today a lot has changed but the core aims of the business are exactly the same.

For over 20 years Barber Jackson has been providing innovative design and marketing communications for a broad spectrum of clients - Private enterprise, from one-man bands to multi-national organisations - Publicly funded bodies such as county councils and local authorities, health organisations such as Primary Care Trusts - and Charities.

Our aim is to utilise design and marketing collateral to position and promote our client’s brands to greatest effect. Many design consultancies list everything from business cards to web solutions as the focus of their activity. We concentrate our attention on ideas, making sure that what a client has to say is heard in the right places. Distilling the information and assessing the best way to deliver it is what we do, this can take myriad forms, but clear, concise communication preferably with a big idea is our focus.

In-house we are creative thinkers and producers of artwork for print or screen. Allied to this we are illustrators, copy-writers, photographers and planners. For things outside these disciplines such as web and digital programming, media buying, market research etc. we have close alliances with people and companies who satisfy any gaps between our ideas and realising those ideas into practical applications.

We are a mature, established team of people who have worked together for a long time and as a result of this we have developed ways of working, levels of service and standards of work quality which we do not allow to be undermined. Clear and concise communication between the team and the instinctive culture that has developed, means we are able to deputise for one another when needs arise and flow jobs through the company in the most efficient manner.

Not only do we have a loyal staff, who have been with us for many years, we also have a very loyal group of companies who supply us with the products and services that enable our ideas and work to be brought to market. These include printers, photographers, exhibition constructors, copywriters, illustrators etc. the majority of whom we have worked with for many years. By knowing we have strong support from suppliers we can really rely on, we are able to perform very confidently.

We regularly meet with customers following major projects to discuss how they have run. We consider it evident that our customers are satisfied in that we have a large proportion that we have worked with for a long time, some from when we started the business 20 years ago. We consider these relationships to be testament to our performance.

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Testimonials


I’ve just come back from Holywells official opening – it looks fantastic!
Thank you so much for your help and for turning this round so quickly. All of the feedback this morning was positive – from customers, volunteers, staff, so that’s a great start.

Helen
St Elizabeth Hospice


I have been over to our new HQ 2-3 times in the last week and am really pleased with the work you have done in branding the offices. After raising the need for branding the office and your initial ideas we have seen Neil and Annie achieve a really good working backdrop for staff. Many thanks for this, everyone really likes the offices.

Paul
Integrated Pathway Hub Provide


I hope you are enjoying the BH weekend! I am pleased to let you know that the Rural Escapes booklet has now been printed and is being distributed. I will put a copy of the booklet in the post to you. If you would any more copies, please just let me know. Once again, thank you for all your help. It was a pleasure to work with you on this project and I am delighted with the final results.

Helen
Essex County Council - Visit Essex


Only just found the time to write and say thank you!!!
Life size version is amazing and adds to the "awe and wonder” Roll on next Friday!!!

Thank you for making this all possible!

Very much appreciated.
Will let you know how I get on!

Sarah
Academies Enterprise Trust


All posters etc are now up and the staff love them!! It also went out into the local paper and we have had good feedback so far, so thank you for all your help.

I would love to catch up and continue working with you. I have a meeting with my boss at the end of next week, so will discuss what we have coming up and look at what we can work on together.

Charlotte
Active Luton


I think the whole experience of working with you and your team has been delightful and professional all the way.

Personally I can say I felt that your experience was evident and supportive to me personally and gave me the confidence to persuade the Board.

We had great feedback from the inclusive approach we took to the focus groups and people loved to be heard and included.

All in all your team has set us up with new look and “Be” so any cost that we have spent will be easily recovered as we have protected our hospice with energy and vibrancy that will insure we are seen as the charity of choice for east Suffolk.

Alison
St. Elizabeth Hospice


Dear ALO Super heros!

Thank you and congratulations on a superb new style ALO. I love it and think it works really well. I like the targeted carrier sheet, the size, the fact that one story can be a double page spread, the new look lottery and it feels easier and less busy to read.

Thanks for all the effort and design that went into it.

Thanks again one and all.

Diana
East Anglian Air Ambulance


I just wanted to let you know that our Board were very complimentary about this year's annual report that you prepared for us.

John fed this back to me after the board meeting and then at our Annual Members meeting the Chair and one of the Non Exec Directors separately came up to me to say they thought it was the best won we had produced.

So many thanks to your team, Neil and colleagues for such good work.

Paul
Integrated Pathway Hub


Not only is this interesting and informative, but it looks superb too design-wise.

Liam
EES for Schools


Just wanted to email and say a big thank you for getting the Provide brand launched on 2nd September as planned.

I received the launch pack on Saturday and thought it looked great. I saw many staff come to work on Monday wearing their new lanyards and Ann has had many requests for the new logo.

Simon great to see the culmination of all the work on rebranding CECS that started over a year ago!

Strong work guys

Paul
Provide


Wonderful

Sorry I missed you on Saturday – I had a private view of the new Retail Centre earlier in the week.

The branding looks so good up on the walls. We are absolutely thrilled with it.

Laura
St Nicholas Hospice Care


I just wanted to thanks for yet another stunning magazine. I saw Diana yesterday and she is delighted with it – and I have also had great feedback from colleagues too.

Clare
East Anglian Air Ambulance

My heartfelt thanks for the hard work and brilliance you’ve poured into the latest version of our catalogue. It really looks sensational. I love the smaller items pages, thought they really worked well this year.

David
SensoryPlus


Sorry for the delay in writing but just wanted to say thank you for all your work on the holiday guide for this year. It looks and feels wonderful and has already received some lovely comments on the design. Thank you

Helen
Mid Suffolk District Council


This is fantastic stuff…. Thank You

Mark
Loyalty Consulting


Prospectus arrived in plenty of time!!

Thanks so much for all your hard work and expertise – as always I enjoyed working with you on this project!

Thanks again

Heather
AET Felixstowe Academy


Just a quick one to say a very big thank you for all your help and advice on the winter mailer. Sales are looking good and there is no doubt that the great design of the mailer has helped it enormously.

Thank you again

Cassie
Jim Lawrence Traditional Ironwork


Just to let you know all the documents received are excellent. It has been a pleasure working with you and you have been very helpful. I am sure we will work again in the future.

Anthony
North East Essex NHS


Just talked to Neil to thank him and your team on doing a Great job on our new brochure.

So just wanted to drop you a line as well and say a big Thank you.

Have a great weekend

Garry
Target Sport Ltd

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Brand Spotlight

First - What is Brand?

Brand is one of those words that has become ubiquitous in the marketing and advertising world, but what does it actually mean? In particular, what does it mean to enterprises that don’t operate in the fast moving world of consumer goods, where most people’s awareness of brand starts?

There is a commonly held misconception that an organisation’s identity is its brand. We often get clients who say things like: ‘We need to update our brand.”, when what they actually mean is they want a new brand identity or possibly just a logo. Brand identity is a component of the brand, but brand goes much deeper.

Brand is more than just a logo!

When you think about it there are lots of examples of brands that don’t even have a logo, like David Beckham, or Jamie Oliver. For David and Jamie it is about who they are, what they do and how they do it. Their demeanor, their behavior, their personalities, what they believe in, what makes them stand out. These are the attributes that determine whether people wish to engage with them or not. And it’s the same for companies, whoever they are and whatever sector they are in.

The brand defines the relationship that customers have with organisations.

It is a promise made to customers and other stakeholders in the business.

It is shaped by behavior and customer experience.

It is the functional and emotional response that those who come into contact with the
business have.

A strong brand creates value and influence.

Why is Brand important?

A Brand must deliver a specific set of features, benefits and service or product, consistently to the buyer – This is the Brand promise

For customers - The Brand gives them the ability to differentiate in a cluttered market making it simpler for consumers to choose.

For businesses - The Brand presents the differential. It has been proven that customers are prepared to pay a substantial price premium for, and remain loyal to, a strong brand.

What is the Barber Jackson Brand Spotlight?

We research and evaluate the brand’s characteristics under two overlapping headings – external market factors and the brand’s DNA.

Barber Jackson’s Brand Spotlight is a process designed to uncover the essence of your brand’s meaning. We call it a Brand Spotlight because it sheds light on the key elements that contribute to a brand’s characteristics.

These can be divided into two overlapping beams that contain the core of the brand’s essence.

External Market – target audience

  • competitive environment
  • customer insights

Brand DNA – Values

  • Personality
  • Benefits
  • Reasons to believe
  • Differentiators
  • Essence

Brand Spotlight asks fundamental questions about your business and the answers it reveals can help to define strategy. Not just brand strategy, but overall business strategy. Ultimately it can help you understand where you are, where you want to go and how you’re going to get there.

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Work placements

We offer work placements for students and have a programme of activity that hopefully provides an insight into the workings of our industry. Dependent on the type of work we have on the go this will include being involved in the day to day business of the company, production meetings, client liaison, briefings etc. an introduction to the software and hardware we use, photographic shoots, shadowing members of the team and visits to our suppliers, printers, out-putters, developers etc.

If you would like to spend some time with us please contact us via email with an overview of your studies and an insight into your ambitions and we will hopefully be able to accommodate your request.

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Talks

Both Adrian and Simon enjoy the opportunity to present the thoughts, ideas and anecdotes they have gathered throughout their careers. Over the years they have presented at trade missions to China, India and America as well as local business groups and networking meetings.

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Christmas cards

We have a long-standing tradition of producing our own Christmas greetings. As well as wishing our clients and suppliers all the best, it is an opportunity to present our creative thinking and technical skills. Through the years we have been Angels, Reindeers, Dreams, Toys, Turkeys, Stars and Elves amongst many other themes.

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Simon Jackson

Simon’s role since founding the business with Adrian in 1991 is to navigate the Barber Jackson ship through the often turbulent waters of the British economy and keep it on an even keel. He combines managing the business with a dollop of input into the creative process, while also helping to develop the business, particularly in relation to the growing portfolio of brand consultancy work.

Simon’s background on both client side marketing and account management for London advertising agencies gave him the insight and experience to understand clients’ needs across a broad spectrum of marketing disciplines. Prior to co-founding Barber Jackson, Simon was Client Services Director at the same East Anglian communications group as Adrian and the rest, as they say, is history.

The long partnership that Simon and Adrian have enjoyed over the years and the complementary roles they fulfill are key success factors in Barber Jackson’s longevity.

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Louise Ashby

After a decade or so of account managing clients for Barber Jackson, Louise’s role has recently developed to be more project-based. Competitive analysis for clients taking part in our Brand Spotlight process, contributing to creative discussions and consultation that follow the insight phase and supporting new business and strategic activity are all ways Louise applies the experience gained over many years service to the Barber Jackson cause.

Louise gained a degree in Politics, Economics and Sociology from the University of Winchester, all areas of study that come in handy when account managing. Having gained experience at both London and Essex agencies, Louise joined Barber Jackson in 2000.

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Neil Hatton

Ideas. Energy. Enthusiasm. Neil’s Art Directing teeth are firmly sunk into every project he works on. Take his unswerving loyalty to the cause, mix with his scrupulous attention to design detail and add a good measure of polished typography - and you have Neil’s recipe for some refined and effective results. Ask any of his long standing portfolio of clients what his strengths are and they will undoubtedly site his dedication to fulfilling their objectives and his impressive work ethic.

Neil is a graduate of Ipswich College gaining an HND in Design Communications. Starting as a junior designer at Barber Jackson straight after graduation, Neil is now one of the cornerstones of the company in his role as Creative Account Director.

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Rachel Butcher

Rachel is a designer with a wealth of experience in a variety of projects. Her illustration skills and appreciation of progressive digital design means she spends time visualising and stylising maps, graphics and images within her designs for print and online.

Rachel completed her studies at Epsom School of Art and Design. With prior experience in two regional design agencies, Rachel has been a stalwart of Barber Jackson’s studio for over a decade.

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Adrian Barber

As one of the ‘names over the door’ Ade doesn’t think he can be old enough to have spent 23 years directing the creative output at Barber Jackson. Luckily, this means he has both the experience to know what works and the youthful enthusiasm to seek out and embrace new ideas. His ideas may be innovative, but he is also hell bent on ensuring that all our work bears the Barber Jackson stamp of quality and excellent execution.

Adrian achieved qualifications in film, TV and graphic design at Wrexham and Ipswich colleges. Working for both a commercial PR company and one of East Anglia’s largest communications groups, he gained experience in a variety of disciplines to supplement his design skills, including video and conference and event management. All of which stood him in good stead when founding Barber Jackson.

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Matthew Wright

Wisdom and wide shoulders on one so young! Matt’s efficient, accurate and unflappable approach along with a solid knowledge of all that is technical make for a reliable, resourceful studio manager. His patience, keen eye for design detail and ability to interpret a brief allows the whole team to be proactive, strategic, and responsive. If you’ve got a technical question, Matt’s usually got the answer.

Matt joined Barber Jackson after gaining a BA(Hons) in graphic design and has never looked back.

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Jaye Gibbons

Jaye’s approach to design is precise. Her artwork is accurate. Her methods are meticulous. This eye for design and firm handle on all design programs, provides us with a reliable consistency. Ultimately, this means we can turn around designs and artwork quickly and efficiently as a matter of course.

Jaye gained a BA (Hons) in Graphic Media before cutting her teeth in magazine design for a publishing house, subsequently joining Barber Jackson’s design studio in July 2012.

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Dave Lam

Creative. Resourceful. Dave makes things happen and quick. He is key to both conceptualising ideas and producing visuals to demonstrate these concepts. Dave’s inspired thinking combined with his artistry and photographic prowess means we are equipped to show off our ideas and present them to clients early in our creative process.

Dave qualified in graphic design and immediately began to develop his interest in photography. As an established fashion photographer in his own right, it is fair to say his work is unique, surprising and we frequently find ourselves asking him: ‘How did you do that?’..

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Helen Cridland

What doesn’t Helen do? Helen looks after the team and our clients. She manages the office, she prepares invoices, she places orders, negotiates with our suppliers and arranges quotes, welcomes our visitors and you will remember when you have had a chirpy chat with her on the phone. Her creative approach and professionalism keeps us on our toes and helps us to practice what we preach.

As well as her talent for office management Helen continues to pursue her second career as a professional dancer utilizing the skills she acquired while studying for a BPA (Hons) degree from the Northern School of Contemporary Dance.