why did we rebrand
Early in 2021, we began taking our business through the same meticulous process we take our clients through, as we set out to rebrand our business. Our name hasn’t changed, but everything else? It’s brand new. Launched in early 2022, it’s a huge overarching project that’s been led by our creatives. We’re very proud of it.
our new identity
You’ll see it everywhere, the unifying thread that connects all of our visual comms. We’ve also commissioned a font foundry to help us create a font unique to us; it’s based on an existing font, with a creative twist in a few key places. At the same time, we’ve created a new language for motion graphics and typography. But rather than just tell you about all this, we’ve put together this video – which shows everything in action.
Not just about ‘singing from the same hymn-sheet’, but the bassline that underpins who we are.
As the world leaders in audio branding, we truly understand the impact that branding can have within businesses—it can help to crystallise purpose, strengthen relationships with customers and galvanise internal teams.
The meaning behind the mark
PHMG will create waves for your brand and its consumers. Delighting them with a world class sound that’s music to the ears, and delivering a unique service that empowers business growth.
We haven’t missed a beat
We’ve considered how we express our brand across our entire product landscape, with in-depth thinking creating a clear architecture between the masterbrand, related products and sub-brands.
We’ve introduced differentiation between pricing packages through distinct colourways, and simultaneously refreshed our product literature.
Our charity, the PHMG Foundation, would also need a new visual identity. Its new unique mark is a complex derivation of the masterbrand that incorporates a red cross (the universal symbol of care) at its centre; employing the same typeface and primary palette ensures the familial relationship is overt.
Refreshing our environment
Our brand isn’t just something that we present to the outside world – it’s what our people are surrounded by, day in, day out.
We’ve evolved simple things – like our dresscode, which is now more relaxed than before – and some bigger things, like our attitude towards remote and hybrid working. That said, we’re still firm believers in the appeal of the office.
So we’ve invested in transforming and refurbishing our physical environments, incorporating biophilic design (i.e. using natural woods, plants and metal finishes) that is proven to help in mental recovery and stress-relief. Not only that, but they can also help to ‘replenish’ our capacity to pay attention – therefore making us more productive.
Our digital platforms
You can probably tell we’ve completely overhauled our shop window to the world, our website. We’ve introduced more video content, and – as you might expect – lots more audio.
But the transformation of our digital experience extends beyond what things look and sound like – we’ve also introduced a new Client Log-in area, where you can access information about your PHMG account.
Rewriting our wrongs
We make a big deal out of the creativity we inject into our audio productions. Between the music and the script, we go great guns to ensure they’re engaging and packed with personality, and employ a large team of writers to make your audio pop. But when it came to our own written comms?
We pulled our punches. Perhaps over-conscious of the diversity of our audience, we were almost afraid to inject too much character – just in case. That doesn’t chime with what we learned about our brand. So, we hired someone to develop an entirely new Tone of Voice that would convey what we’re like and what we believe in.
The result? You’re reading it.
Gone are the days when we talk about our products in floral, almost poetic ways. We know decision-makers need clear, concise information so they can make quick, informed decisions – and that’s what we’re giving them.
Our new sonic identity
As the experts in audio branding, our sonic identity takes on even more importance than it does for other brands. We set out to completely refresh the way we sound, and our Music & Voice teams came into their own.Understanding our brand personality would objectively indicate the genre our music should be.
We followed a strict, process-heavy system that’s second nature to our team of composers. It’s the same one we follow for clients; it overrides personal preference, and guarantees the most brand-congruent sound possible, every time. Here’s a snapshot of the brief’s main elements and how they objectively represent our personality attributes.
Our sonic signature
We also evaluated the extent to which our sonic logo must evolve. Our music team have vast experience creating sonic logos, and know that the more luxurious a brand, the stronger the argument for simplicity and cross-cultural accessibility in a sonic identity becomes.
Our new sonic logo is clearly related to our exclusive track, richer and more complex than before, but still simple.
To objectively – and accurately – translate PHMG into sound, we had to identify and contextualise the semiotics, or ‘signposts’ across every part of our new brand identity.
Listen to our new exclusive track in full
Expressing our personality
Understanding our brand personality would objectively indicate the genre our music should be.
We followed a strict, process-heavy system that’s second nature to our team of composers. It’s the same one we follow for clients; it overrides personal preference, and guarantees the most brand-congruent sound possible, every time.
Here’s a snapshot of the brief’s main elements and how they objectively represent our personality attributes.
We love to inspire intrigue
We’re great storytellers
We’re driven and determined
We’re a passionate bunch
We know our stuff (and we’re not afraid to show it)
A library that works everywhere
We didn’t create just this one track – we created four, with the additional related tracks belonging to the PHMG Foundation, and our UK and US staff sports teams.
Not only that but we’ve exploded all four tracks into a customisable stem library, which we’ll use to build endless edits of each track, to soundtrack all of our content.
Our vocal identity
We take voice artistry very seriously, and reflected long and hard on the voice artist we chose to represent us. Because to whoever’s listening, our voice artist is us. So we began by looking at our people – literally walking around the office to capture our demographic.
We also spent time looking at our new verbal identity – after all, those are the words being performed by our voice artist – which gave us specific direction on the delivery style we’d need from our voice: able to speak to a diverse range of people ‘on a level’.
We also thought long and hard about gender. Often when casting a voice, we have very clear direction of which way to lean, based on the client’s target audience. But that isn’t the case for us: although the statistics generally skew male and older, anybody can be a business owner.
With our voice roster all-but memorised, we narrowed the options down to a few and ran auditions. You can hear a snippet of our new voice artist below. To ensure we’re appealing to as broad a demographic as possible, he’s a he, but has a much younger voice than we’ve spoken with before.
Listen to our new voice artist
Conducting your own rebrand
If you’re ready to dive into your own rebrand, know that success doesn’t happen overnight. (Believe us when we say this project took up a tonne of time, lots of people’s attention, and many a late night. Creating a new brand, refreshing or extending your existing one can be done if you attack it strategically – and remember to seek help if you don’t have the skills to do something (like creating top-quality audio) yourself.
To start you off, here are a few of our best tips to get through the process with less stress.
Understanding what your competitors are doing can help you decide where to position yourself, and how to stand apart.
Check out some of our favourite recent rebrands from around the world.
Consistency in brand is fundamental – our guides explains where and how you can ensure you achieve it.
Imitation? It’s the sincerest form of flattery.
If our refreshed website has got you thinking about updating your own, video and audio content is more important than ever – and we can help ensure they’re high-quality productions.