August 5, 2020

How We Got Here!

How We Got Here!

The Mi9 team has been busy and we’re super excited to share with you our latest news. From our all new brand identity to an exciting new partnership. Read what Rhys Heron, Managing Director of Mi9 has to say.

When Mi9 developed our FY20 strategy, one of our priorities was to “Build a recognised and respected local digital brand, reflective of our great people and known, understood and admired by our clients and partners”. It had become increasingly clear that the previous brand representation, which served Mi9 for many years, no longer reflected the direction and vibrancy of the business and its people. Our objective was reinforced when we surveyed our clients and the number one piece of feedback they gave us, at 50%, was to “Increase awareness of the Mi9 brand”. We didn’t need any more encouragement and commenced a review and redevelopment of our brand with local agency Stanley St from February. 

The project was reaching its stride just as COVID-19 and Level 4 lockdown struck on 26 March but, not to be deterred, a lot of important discussion and collaboration took place during video conferences so, in many ways, our new brand was born during a period of unparalleled challenge and adaptation. These are sentiments which anyone working in digital media and advertising will be familiar with, and which summarise the turbulence and opportunity surrounding individuals and businesses in today’s environment.

Revealing a new brand that epitomises opportunity, it seems fitting to launch an exciting new partnership with Australian youth publisher Pedestrian Group at the same time. Pedestrian Group’s titles Business Insider Australia, Pedestrian.tv, Gizmodo Australia, Lifehacker Australia, Kotaku Australia and POPSUGAR Australia exude bold energy and dynamism and their New Zealand audiences will complement and enhance our established local partnerships with Microsoft, Dailymotion and ViacomCBS.

We’re both pleased and proud to be launching a new brand and partnership at the same time, and so soon after a period of immense challenge for Kiwis and the world. In a very real way, our new brand has the strength that arises from overcoming challenge and the optimism of intangible opportunity built into its DNA. We hope you like it and agree that it reflects the Mi9 of today!

A word from our Agency partner

Stanley St were asked to help Mi9 rethink their brand identity back in February before the world fell off a cliff.

It seems like so much as passed since then both within the project and around us. I think the context of Covid-19 had an impact whether consciously or subconsciously, not only in how we developed the design but also what we felt it needed to do and what success looked like.

During COVID, locally and internationally, brands have come under tremendous pressure to align what they do with how they do it. To act authentically. To act credibly. Some have done so and some have lost their way.

To us at Stanley St, when we engaged with Mi9 team members and leadership, what became apparent was that the story that needed telling was less an outward facing one, less a client requirement, and more an internal one. This fascinated us. Too often we form brands as a mirror to the clients we wish to impress or attract. In Mi9 we saw a small team looking to create an identity that represented them, honestly, credibly, inspirationally.

Considering its big name partners and envious client list, this could have been a story about the future of media, or technology. Instead it looked inward and became a story that would help align the team’s vision, values and beliefs. And this is the heart of good branding. It focuses on internal dynamics. It finds the human face of the brand and it creates a story that if strong enough pulls clients towards it rather than pushes its narrative upon them.

For us it was about trying to create balance. A balance between what came before and what we saw of their future. A balance between personality and credibility. A balance between internal and external. As such we created a balanced identity that tried to represent both the internal warmth and dynamism of the team’s personality with the professionalism and gravitas of their attitude towards their work.

We look forward to continuing to work alongside them and wish them the very best for this new chapter in their journey.

A word from Pedestrian Group


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