Updated: Feb 12, 2021
The term re-branding sounds like a complete company-wide overhaul, which to an extent is true of some of the changes at Public Outreach. We knew what we did well and we knew what we loved, but why did it often feel unfinished?
We set out on this journey wanting to bridge the gap between what we were doing, and how we were speaking about it. This would truly set us up to be an agency that’s a catalyst for positive change both internally and externally.
With this in mind, you’ll be pleased to know that we are still run by the same passion-fuelled, charity-focused, relationship crafters as we have been for many years. So what’s new?
Since we began in 2007, Public Outreach has always had an environment which promoted constant evolution and the embracing of change. We were already doing great work with our staff and charity partners. The fluid culture of Public Outreach had been part of our fabric since our very first interactions.
However, what we soon realised was that our branding, content and messaging rarely reflected the excitement and dynamism of what was happening internally.
This had to change.
We wanted to ensure a seamless circle of creativity and interactivity that would reinforce and strengthen our sense of purpose through the services we offer.
The process started with some good old fashioned internal reflection. As a company that prides itself on its people, we wanted to really hone in on what our team felt was important. What was their ‘why’? Their driving force?
The data was extremely fascinating, providing evidence that, depending on how long staff had worked at Public Outreach, their ‘why’ differed slightly. Those in their initial 6 months of employment were slightly more driven by their love for our charity partners. Longer serving staff slightly more driven by the team culture they had helped shape.
We also found that despite having developed many individuals into leadership roles at an age much lower than the industry average, many staff didn’t realise the extent of the progression opportunities available to them
Another vital complication to consider was that a number of staff were slightly unsure of our values. The internal communication had somehow missed the mark on telling our staff what our purpose was. What we were aiming to achieve when we began work every morning. Fundraisers were, at times, focusing on weekly results as opposed to the big picture of improving the world and developing their personal skills.
The Master Plan
Despite the above, overarchingly the results were extremely positive. Staff felt they had a strong development and support network around them. We had excellent feedback in helping staff set-up a ‘base from home’ workspace. And, most importantly, our team was proud of what they did.
It left us with a clear message. We needed to ensure internal communication was improved. Our team needed to understand who we are, what our ‘big-picture’ mission is and how we are trying to achieve this as a collective.
The first step was to focus on improving our fundraisers’ view of life at Public Outreach. We brought together the management team from the call centre and hashed out a clear leadership development structure with the aim to provide fundraisers with more transparent and achievable long term goals aside from weekly objectives.
Since implementing this programme in November 2020, we have promoted 2 individuals into Trainee Team Leader roles with 6 more qualifying for roles with more responsibility.
To help with internal communication, we wanted to bridge the gap between senior management and fundraisers. To achieve this we implemented Employment Hero, an internal social platform.
Here we run company-wide initiatives, celebrate individual and team achievements and share progress about the many incredible causes we are supporting. This platform gives staff a sense of community despite being spread out across Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Auckland, Wellington, Hamilton & Queenstown.
The Aesthetic Process
Aside from improving the working environment for our staff, we also began the long and evaluative process of re-branding. The Public Outreach which arrived from Canada in 2007 had evolved into a new creature but still wore the dated branding as its badge. We re-assessed our values, our image, our content.
Public Outreach has predominantly been a relationship marketing company. We will continue to have this as our main focus of marketing. However as the world and industry move towards modern techniques, we also wanted to support our existing strategy with brand marketing. This helps to better reflect the sense of innovation, dynamism and creativity we all saw in daily Public Outreach life.
Being successful when brand marketing is reliant on the company communicating the same consistent message. We researched, collaborated and created a clear set of brand guidelines to help us truly understand our ‘Why’ and ‘How’.
We rejuvenated our values to better describe our ‘infinite game’. We are charity-inspired, donor-conscious and development obsessed. We wanted our values to speak to each of these categories.
The conclusion: ‘We Engage, We Elevate, We are Effective’.
Once we better understood our values, we began the process of extensively researching our target market. What was their ‘why’? What were their ‘values’? Only when we truly understood our audience could we provide valuable content. We followed demographic and psychographic tests, complimenting them with our existing expert knowledge of the industry.
After these steps were ticked off, we faced the fun yet demanding task of re-designing our logo and website. We were extremely fortunate to collaborate with Ludmila Shevchenko, a multi-award-winning graphic designer. She brought our rough concepts to life, and provided a visual representation of our values.
The three imperfect circles you see represent our team, donors and charity partners. The different shades represent the development of staff throughout their time at Public Outreach. The imperfect nature of the circles symbolise people with different backgrounds and skills collectively making a successful whole.
As our brand re-imagines itself, we are also re-imagining our product range. Many innovative bespoke campaigns (which we cannot divulge too much about at this stage - watch this space!) are being discussed and developed. The concepts currently being discussed have the potential of revolutionising our industry with products that have not been seen in Australia & New Zealand to date.
We will be providing content with the aim of sharing knowledge with our industry. To help others in their quest for improving the world one cause at a time, regardless of if they are a Public Outreach partner or not. Ultimately the end goal is creating a better world.
Whether you’re Chris, our Director of Phone in Melbourne, or Rob, our newest Team-Leader in Queenstown, we will continue to think of new and inventive ways to communicate and bond. We want to promote a positive work culture, healthy body and healthy mind.
Our mission statement is to ‘aim to do better, be better and give more’. You can join us on our mission by signing up to our newsletter to receive updates as and when they happen!