S&ME

AEC CASE STORY

Re-engineering for greater growth

A top 100 engineering firm needed an exciting new brand and fresh marketing strategy to sustain its growth. This is their story.

  • Hermes Award Winner Hermes Award Winner
  • AVA Award Winner AVA Award Winner
  • Commarts Award Winner Commarts Award Winner
  • Davey Award Winner Davey Award Winner

“I was adamantly against that green in the logo. However, Hinge’s research convinced me otherwise. I’ve now gotten to the point where we have some of that color on my office walls. I’ve committed! We now look and feel like an ENR Top 100 firm.”

Steve Pasternack, PE, Vice President/Director of Energy, S&ME

Lost. Then Found.

The S&ME team had a huge problem. Started as a local geotechnical engineering firm in the early 70s, they had grown to become one of Engineering-News Record’s Top 100 engineering, design, environmental and construction firms through organic growth and acquisitions. However, they had lost their corporate identity along the way and were operating under different names.

They did not have a unified public face. The S&ME team had expanded their services far beyond those that they had started with, but many in their crowded marketplace did not know this. Prospective clients often confused them with other engineering and construction firms.

The S&ME team wanted to be in a position to choose its path forward rather than blindly go where momentum took them. They knew that they needed to make a lot of changes. They needed a new brand that would better reflect their leadership position and separate them from their visually undistinguished competitors. How would they start the process?

Research: the framework for success

The S&ME team is comprised of a lot of engineers — who are very methodical, precise and risk averse. So how did they accept an aggressive brand overhaul that kept their corporate name but threw everything else (logo, website, office look and feel, promotional strategies) out the window?

Research. Hinge’s research and accompanying insights that became the blueprints that set the S&ME team moving in the same direction to the overall objective — and validate that they were moving in the right direction.

Moving ahead: brick by brick

From the initial research, Hinge went on to help the S&ME team with numerous branding initiatives including a new logo as well as corporate colors and shapes. They implemented Hinge’s Visible Firm Program to create a higher level of subject matter expert awareness through guest blogging, article writing, public speaking and visibility research.

Hinge designed and developed a High Performance Website to generate more demand, engagement and business — including strategy development, search engine optimization, keyword research, copywriting, design and more, with one activity supporting the next. The initial research also uncovered that the concept of versatility was a great cultural building block for S&ME.

So Hinge positioned S&ME as an exceptionally versatile firm — captured in a new tagline, “Built for Versatility,” each business unit could continue to provide specialized services without diluting their expertise. All the different, merged and acquired entities could finally be consolidated under one S&ME name.

Internal and external launch: blueprints for success

Next, Hinge helped launch the new S&ME brand to the marketplace. A LinkedIn visibility campaign targeted specific audience and roles. Hinge provided a series of webinars to help the internal S&ME team get trained on the new brand. Training started at the C-suite and worked its way through the entire team. We even produced a deluxe, hardcover book and a brand unveiling video to explain and illustrate the new brand and what it would mean to the marketplace.

Today, with a systematic foundation, the S&ME team stands out and grows in a crowded marketplace — positioning itself as the sophisticated ENR Top 100 firm it has become.

Brand launch video

S&ME full color palette
S&ME full color palette

What we did

Visible Firm Program

  • Guest Blog & Publication Opportunities
  • Keyword Research
  • Ongoing Consultation
  • Speaking Engagements
  • Strategy & Plan
  • Visibility Research

High-Performance Website

  • Design
  • Online Strategy
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Website Architecture
  • Website Development
  • Writing

Branding Services

  • Brand Book
  • Brand Rollout Plan
  • Brand Style Guidelines
  • Brand Unveiling Video
  • Brochure
  • Email Template
  • LinkedIn Ad Campaign
  • Logo and color palate
  • Messaging Architecture
  • Name Exploration
  • Positioning
  • Research
  • Stationery
  • Tagline
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