A Brand Essence story

Clarifying the Future for a Production Agency


ICP is a central London based production agency, working on implementing global advertising campaigns for clients such as Estee Lauder, Diageo and Alcatel-Lucent. Whilst successful, they had no clear positioning to differentiate themselves from the other, and mostly larger, production houses and external awareness of them was quite limited outside of their client base. ICP needed a single, powerful strategic positioning to give them focus and direction for the future.

In order to clarify ICP’s current situation, we needed to understand both internal and external points of view so we conducted stakeholder interviews with both ICP staff of all levels and with ICP clients. These confidential interviews gave us the opportunity to understand the strengths and weaknesses of ICP, both perceived and actual. We were then able to get all the current issues on the table, understand them and use them as stimulus to help build the positioning for the future.


In addition to these interviews, LBI also conducted desk research to fully understand the category and the competition. This approach allowed us to contribute the right level of category intelligence and become strategic partners throughout the process.

Once we had a clear picture of where ICP was currently, we needed to turn our attention towards where it should be going. We ran a collaborative workshop to clarify the benefits they offer and their emotional and performance differentiators in order to devise their Future Brand Essence.

During the workshop, we generated a significant insight that the word ‘Intelligence’ is unique in the production category (which is typically viewed as the ‘un-sexy’ end of the communication cycle and is just about ‘getting things done’). The word ‘Intelligence’ however, perfectly summed up the ICP offering, as it incorporated both their invention of the ‘de-bundling’ concept in the late 1980’s, to provide a more cost-effective offering for clients, and the pro-active service they provide for each client’s brand today, which sets them apart from competitors.

Their Future Brand Essence therefore weaves together the concept of ‘Intelligent Production’ and the importance of its role for Clients and their brands. It is expressed in a concise and inspiring way – ‘Because Intelligent Production Matters.’


We validated this through client interviews to determine that the new strategic positioning was progressive for ICP and to use their guidance on how Intelligent Production could best be brought to life for them.

Once we had finalised the Brand Essence, we moved into the Action Planning phase. With the key ICP team, we developed ideas for both internal and external implementation, which was structured around the LBI ‘Brand Flow’ diagram to ensure ideas are generated for the whole company and all its departments.

The new positioning was then launched internally so that staff could feel motivated behind the common goal before being used to brief creative agencies to develop the external launch material.

As a result of the project, ICP have now completely updated their visual identity and website, using the Brand Essence as an engaging strapline to build awareness of their differentiation and client focused offering. They have also grown the business by developing an intelligent approach for clients which encapsulates all stages of the communication process, from creative development to implementation, as required by each respective client.