Gabor in action!

News: Encuentros Brandemia_

Gabor in action!

Last month Gabor Schreier, our Exec. Creative Director, was invited to speak at ‘Encuentros Brandemia’. These are a series of afternoon talks organized by the Brandemia Team, a leading Spanish online portal covering worldwide branding news and resources. ‘Encuentros Brandemia’ are aimed at engaging the branding community in Madrid and spreading the word about the branding world. Saffron has been the second consultancy happy to participate and with Gabor we added our spice to these events, for sure. Gabor presented and entertained the audience with cases such as A1 Telekom Austria, Volotea or Panda Security. His characteristic mix between German rigor and Saffronesque humor engaged the audience and will certainly evoke memories of a fun and insightful afternoon. Have a ...
Thought Leadership Boot Camp

News: Professional Services

Thought Leadership Boot Camp

We hosted the latest in our series of Professional Services breakfast events yesterday with a Thought Leadership Boot Camp. A simple concept on paper that’s incredibly hard to achieve in the real life environment of a top tier international professional services firm, attendees were taken through global best practice in the area, heard about Saffron's top tips for developing effective thought leadership, and swapped notes on what worked - or didn't - at their firm. For those who weren't able to make yesterday's date, we're repeating the event on March 18th. Email emma.fairclough@saffron-consultants.com for more.
Thought Leadership in professional services – how high is the bar?

Views: Thought Leadership

Thought Leadership in professional services – how high is the bar?

McKinsey do a lot of it, economist Jim O’Neill is probably one right now and in the depths of the financial crisis you couldn’t move for Robert Peston’s opinions. Thought leadership is a bit like charisma – hard to describe but much easier to spot. In our increasingly saturated digital media environment the demand for thought leaders is growing exponentially but what is it and how do you “do it”? Tough call Joel Kurtzman of Booz & Co originally coined the term thought leadership nearly 20 years ago in their publication “Strategy+Business” and it caught on. More recently Forbes proposed that the moniker be reserved for people or companies who are “capitalizing on the dramatically enhanced brand equity ...
2015: Looking ahead

Views: Ping Pong

2015: Looking ahead

Predicting the future is often said to be something of a fool's errand. But we bet we're not alone in thinking about how the world is changing from one year to the other and how those changes might impact our own business - and those of our clients. So we thought we'd take some of the issues that have been top of mind at Saffron lately and share them with you. Our first Ping Pong of the year, then, peeks into the future and gathers together a few of the team's thoughts on what should ambitious brands do more of in 2015 and beyond. Press play to hear: Ian on why brands need to think more like ...
St. James Velo Games

News: Events

St. James Velo Games

We were delighted to play our part in a fundraising event hosted by our clients St. James. The St. James Velo Games, sporting a Saffron identity, took place on the 29th of January at the Olympic Velodrome and saw contestants competing in a series of intense races all for the good cause of raising money for the Berkeley Foundation which supports young people, their families and their communities. More images of the day at Matt Livey's site.
Volotea in the top 10 best airlines worldwide

News: Congrats!

Volotea in the top 10 best airlines worldwide

We are very happy to inform you all that Volotea, one of our dear clients, is now among the top 10 most comfortable airlines in the world and one of the best to travel with children, according to eDreams. And, as if that wasn’t sufficiently rewarding, Volotea also stands out as the best airline in Spain, ahead of Iberia, Air Europa and Vueling. Every year eDreams publishes a ranking that evaluates all airlines worldwide in many different aspects. This ranking is entirely based on feedback received from travellers. This year eDreams analysed no less than 90,000 inputs whose results rank Volotea within the best airlines in the world in terms of comfort and friendliness towards children. From Saffron ...
Thanks ICM The Hague!

News: Thanks ICM The Hague!

Thanks ICM The Hague!

Today the Madrid office of Saffron had the pleasure of welcoming 30 students in International Communication Management at The Hague University. As they were getting closer to ending their studies, they started looking at their next stage in life as professionals. But before getting their hands on to work, they decided to pay us a visit to see with their own eyes what working in place like this is all about, to learn what Saffron is all about, to understand what branding is all about. They listened attentively to what we had to tell them, they asked interesting questions… and, what’s more, they left us a super sweet little gift before going away: “Thanks Saffron!!! Love, ICM The Hague ...
Sorry, what was your brand name again?

Views: Chinese brand names

Sorry, what was your brand name again?

For the last couple of weeks I have been struggling with the decision of buying a new smartphone. In the pursuit of the ideal smartphone that suits my needs, the brand issue inevitably came up. Even though the obvious choice would be a brand like Apple, Samsung or Sony, which would make me feel safe and comfortable, I have started to look into more affordable options and asking tech-savvy friends for suggestions. And quite unexpectedly, Chinese brands started to pop up. Chinese technology brands, like many other Asian brands, have had not positive quality connotations in the past, having been considered the cheaper and inferior option to the Western ones. However, today we see that as they become more ambitious ...
Wall of Wally

Wall of Wally

Wall of Wally

We’re very pleased to share a beautiful new project from designer Jamin Galea, called the Wall of Wally. Jamin is setting up a not-for-profit directory of illustrators and has asked all those who wish to be included to submit their interpretation of a single Wally portrait. The result will be an illustration directory that studios and clients can easily navigate – and a wall of striking and creative illustrations of Wally. Jamin’s also planning an exhibition of sumbissions in April to mark a year since Wally’s passing. We’re very much looking forward to all of it - more information (and the first few illustrations) at Jamin's site, wallofwally.com.
Istanbul Innovation Conference

News: Events

Istanbul Innovation Conference

Jacob was in Istanbul last week speaking at the Istanbul Innovation Conference to an audience of over 4000 on the new zeitgeist - as we see it - and the increasingly acute need for innovation in a world where consumer’s habits are changing almost before our eyes. He touched on topics like 3D printing, the sharing economy, and the rise of the Producer-Consumer – and what shifts such as these will mean for brand fighting to remain relevant in a radically new context. Lastly, he touched on our work with the Turkish Exporter’s Assembly and how Turkey’s history as Masters of Change has tremendous value in a world where the frame of reference is almost constantly shifting. Jacob was, again ...
EarlyBird hits its crowdfunding target

News: EarlyBird

EarlyBird hits its crowdfunding target

We're delighted to announce that our favourite startup, EarlyBird, hit its funding target of £75,000 on Crowdcube - and is currently overfunding to the tune of nearly £95,000. Testament to the hard work of the EarlyBird team who've managed a huge amount in not much time - and the brand we developed together. Onwards and upwards from here on out, we hope!
The power of ‘silly stuff’

Views: Guest Article

The power of ‘silly stuff’

This is a guest post written by Saffron-Brunel Prize 2014 winner Sebastian Grenzhäuser. Earlier this year, my mobile phone contract was up for renewal, an event rivalled in its excitement and efforts only by Christmas. Not wanting to easily part with my money, I decided to shop around a little, and was soon engulfed in a myriad of choices; fortunately, when it came to choosing a network provider, matters were simpler, with only 4 major players occupying the market. One of them is THREE, which admittedly I never dared even poking with a stick due to fears of abysmal network quality or coverage – how wrong I was (my THREE-loving friends quickly reaffirmed)... As one of the most recent players in ...
And the Saffron-Brunel Prize goes to...

News: Awards

And the Saffron-Brunel Prize goes to...

After a few years of guest lecturing at Brunel University’s MA in Design and Branding Strategy, we are now taking this collaboration further and announcing an exciting new initiative. Launched in the summer of 2014, the Saffron-Brunel Prize for Excellence in Strategic Design and Branding was initiated by branding module leader John Boult and aims to promote the most promising young branding professionals taking the course each year. After a selection process involving an individual paper on the future of brands, a one-day masterclass for the shortlisted students with the Saffron London team, and one-to-one interviews with the finalists, the 2014 Prize finally went to Sebastian Grenzhäuser. He has impressed our team us with his design-led approach to understanding ...
Celebrating the past or the future?

Views: Brands and heritage

Celebrating the past or the future?

I recently got to spend a couple of days in Bucharest, my home city. Every time I go there I find it fascinating to look at local brands and see what they’re up to. The brand scene in Romania is, like in any emerging market, an amalgam of good, bad, and ugly, with huge potential, but with little real vision or business mindset. There’s always plenty to pick on, but on this occasion I’ll choose an intriguing trend, which I feel is rather valid internationally – or at least in markets similar to Romania. Many Romanian organisations have started building their brand around celebrations. 555 years from the founding of the city. 60 years since we started operating ...
Jacob at Internet and Mobile World 2014

News: Heading East

Jacob at Internet and Mobile World 2014

On 8-9 October our CEO Jacob Benbunan will be in Bucharest, participating as a keynote speaker at Internet and Mobile World, one largest events in Eastern Europe dedicated to the digital world. Jacob will talk about the deep impact that the digital revolution has had on both brands and consumers and about the future of brands and branding in the digital era. Drawing insight from Saffron's latest research and client work, he will share his views on the opportunities traditional brands have faced with the disruption of the new technologies. Check out the IMW website for more information.
A brand for Turkey

News: Place branding

A brand for Turkey

Over the last two years, we've been working on a brand for Turkey. The central question guiding our work together has been what "Made In Turkey" means in a global context. How is it different or better than "Made In China" or "Made In Germany"? What competitive advantage can Turkey claim for itself as it competes with these nations? And how can a stronger national brand help an emerging country forge lasting international relationships? On Sunday, our work, seeking to answer those questions, was revealed in Istanbul by President Erdoğan, Minister of Economic Affairs Nihat Zeybekci, Minister of Culture and Tourism Ömer Çelik, and Chairman of the Turkish Exporters Assembly, Mehmet Büyükekşi. Erdoğan, speaking of the need for a ...
World's Number One!

News: Baker & McKenzie

World's Number One!

How can a law firm make $2.5 bn? Our client Baker & McKenzie has the answer – ‘be passionately global’ and have a clear proposition that aligns everything you do across the world. Today Baker & McKenzie officially became the world’s biggest law firm, posting revenues over the $2.5 bn barrier for the first time in history. We are proud to be part of their phenomenal success. We helped Baker & McKenzie define the true value of being a global law firm, with the idea of ‘fluency’ overarching everything they do globally in the way they think, work and behave. It’s their ‘fluency’ that enables the firm to navigate the complexity across practices and borders, with ease and second-to-none expertise ...
Wally Olins-Saffron Award goes to IE University graduate

News: Awards

Wally Olins-Saffron Award goes to IE University graduate

Jacob Benbunan, CEO of Saffron, today presented the first Wally Olins-Saffron Award at the IE School of Communication’s graduation ceremony in Madrid. The award, which celebrates innovation and clarity in design thinking, went to Kim Palita Wielands for the gift-giving app concept, dibsy, developed as part of her studies on the School’s Masters in Visual and Digital Media course. The Wally Olins-Saffron Award honours the legacy of our late chairman, Wally Olins, the world’s leading practitioner of branding and identity, who co-founded Saffron with Jacob Benbunan. Kim’s winning project was unanimously selected by a panel of judges that included professors from IE School of Communication and people at Saffron. It was chosen for its originality, rigorous ...
Shaping the future of global tech

News: Fujitsu

Shaping the future of global tech

Fujitsu, the world’s third largest technology company, is on a quest to redefine the future of global tech. Led by our late Chairman Wally Olins, Saffron joined Fujitsu on its journey by developing the common vision and ethos for the brand – ‘shaping tomorrow with you’ – that enables the business to lead and compete with the likes of Google and Amazon. The first strand of work – communications, is on the way with the launch of the global campaign. More to come soon
From Philadelphia to the world

News: Dechert

From Philadelphia to the world

How does one of the oldest and most prestigious Philadelphia law firms go global? Our answer for Dechert: define your distinctiveness and stay true to your core, wherever you are in the world. For the past two years we worked with the firm’s partners, lawyers and staff on developing the brand that is rooted in its personality and reflects the firm’s successes for over a century. See the result here.
IQ + EQ = £€¥$

Our Approach

IQ + EQ = £€¥$

Saffron helps transform brands and businesses with the clarity of rigorous thinking and the courage of bold ideas. We started Saffron in 2001 with a simple but compelling vision: to build a brand consultancy as strong in its strategic thinking as it was in its creativity. We believe that great brands that capture people’s imagination and make a difference to their lives are built on a powerful mix of IQ + EQ. The IQ part is the rational, evidence-based analysis – the fundamentals without which the brand simply couldn’t function. The EQ part is the emotional and more intuitive, judgment-based understanding – the insights that can propel a brand from simply being in the race to winning it. We see it ...
Alfredo on the GM recall scandal

News: LatAm

Alfredo on the GM recall scandal

Our LatAm Director, Alfredo Fraile, was recently on NBC6 in the US discussing the fallout from the GM recall scandal, its impact on the brand, and their chances of recovery. Watch the full video here.
Thanks ICM The Hague!

News: Thanks ICM The Hague!

Thanks ICM The Hague!

Today the Madrid office of Saffron had the pleasure of welcoming 30 students in International Communication Management at The Hague University. As they were getting closer to ending their studies, they started looking at their next stage in life as professionals. But before getting their hands on to work, they decided to pay us a visit to see with their own eyes what working in place like this is all about, to learn what Saffron is all about, to understand what branding is all about. They listened attentively to what we had to tell them, they asked interesting questions… and, what’s more, they left us a super sweet little gift before going away: “Thanks Saffron!!! Love, ICM The Hague ...
The British luxury brand needs a focus

Views: Mulberry’s identity crisis

The British luxury brand needs a focus

With the launch of a new handbag last week the British luxury bag-maker, Mulberry, made international headlines. The Tessie bag, priced at a modest £495-£795, marks a U-turn from the doomed high-end strategy of ousted CEO, Bruno Guillon. The change comes as no surprise as Mulberry has revealed the extent of its failed pursuit of high-end customers, with pre-tax annual profits falling by 53% and sales falling by 15%. Founded in rural Somerset in 1971, Mulberry was originally known for its beautifully crafted leather satchels and accessories designed for hunting, shooting, fishing and other country pursuits. Since the late 1990s, with its iconic Bayswater bag and under the creative vision of Emma Hill in recent years, Mulberry has grown ...
IE School of Communication

News: Saffron professors

IE School of Communication

The IE School of Communications in Madrid conducted an interview with two of their professors - Luz Erhardt and Miren Martinez - who, when not teaching the Masters in Visual and Digital Media, are a key part of the Saffron Madrid team. Luz and Miren spoke about life at Saffron, our people, our heritage and our philosophy as a brand consultancy equally adept in strategy as well as design.
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