It’s not everyday we get the chance to jump in a clients suitcase and travel the world in order to absorb any bits of inspiration we can before diving head first into concepts and design.
We’ve been traveling to Europe with the Lowlands Group every year since 2012. From the winding streets of Amsterdam, to festivals and brewery tours across Belgium, to the markets of Munich, to the countrysides of France. We’ve been through and have seen a lot.
Trips like this, and they don’t have to be far, bring a group together and create a bed of coherent understanding. The vision is set. The conversations over dinner or coffee in the morning are engaged, sporadic, and sometimes mind blowing. The initial hurdles of understanding the what, the why, and the how are suddenly easier to grasp. At a whole new level. And pencils haven’t even touched a single piece of pulp.
The challenge about a new idea or concept is just that. No wheels are being reinvented here. The idea is to have your customers take in the vision as a new way of understanding something they’ve already seen. Our job is to put a new spin on a reciprocated circle of previously regurgitated experiences.
The point is to make sense of the concept and promote consistency and a coherent execution. So that the message is heard and appealing enough to create a culture of repeat customers. If the aesthetic isn’t charming, the message is messy and the idea lacks clarity… you’ll be back to square one in just a matter of time.
So what do the customers get out of our yearly trips to Europe and a lot of money spent on getting everyone on the same page? Well maybe not as much as you’d expect, if we’re talking about those who are visiting for a quick brunch or bier. In reality, many restaurants survive just fine without any concept at all. They just have amazing food and great service.
We’re after longevity. We’re after the “fans”. We’re looking for something for people to talk about… after their dinner is done and they’re back at work talking with their friends about where to go for a good time and a great environment. Our focus is on building culture over years to come. This mentality naturally creates rules for us to follow and we’ll never be confused about how to answer the next question. Because this is who we are and this is what we do.
Sometimes it’s not always about the view through the eyes of the customer. It’s about all the people behind the scenes and their dedication and passions as well.
The businesses we see flourish are the ones that know who they are and believe in their product or service beyond any doubt. They’re not creating something to fill a possible void. They’re making shit happen because that’s what they love. This mentality keeps business owners and their staff enthused and motivated to better their company and offerings.
We don’t pull a ton of stats here based on ROI. We concentrate on making things we think people will love and gravitate towards. Too often, we see companies attempt to appeal to the masses and their concept falls flat. Neutral in the abyss of Pinterest and Google image search pin boards. Put a spin on something that feels genuine and honest. Against all trends and momentary fads .