Chirag Shah + Savannah Swindle
March 27, 2017
Hello my name is Chirag Shah! If you find this blog post, it means I will no longer be the CEO of CPS23 Marketing… instead, as of March 18, I find myself CEO of The Current Agency, our newly rebranded company. So far, the feedback has been amazing, but I had a lot of people ask me why we rebranded and what went into the process of making the change. So, I decided to do a recap of why and how we did it.
The decision to rebrand was an easy one. Let me explain: CP Marketing, C23 Marketing, CSP Marketing, CP23 Marketing, CP Two Three Marketing...and the list goes on. None of those were our name, but they were what people usually called us. But it goes beyond the issue of phonetics, misspelling, and mispronunciation; the brand name did not represent who we were as a company. It was not a brand that unified our team. A company’s brand name is something a CEO should represent with confidence and excitement, but I couldn’t even hide my disdain for it. I dreaded networking because I knew every new conversation would start with clarifying the pronunciation and the meaning of the name (it stood for “quick and simple” — mystery solved!). It was clearly time for change.
In case you’re not familiar with what we do, we’re in Advertising/Marketing, a space that many consider crowded, even though we’ve been carving a place for ourselves here in Tallahassee, Florida. Our challenge was coming up with a new name that encompassed both something that represented the values of our company and wasn’t a ‘Job This’, ‘Career That’. We wanted a name that was synonymous with what we stood for and made it easier for others to recognize and connect with. But what would it be? We kept coming up with mixed results at best (Agency23? Circuit23? Shah & Swindle? CPS23: A Digital & Creative Agency?). Maybe? Or maybe not? Nothing was sticking.
We eventually enlisted our community of current and past interns, employees, clients, and community leaders to help us make sense of it all and come up with a name that fits us perfectly. We spent several weeks at the drawing board to figure out why we do what we do. We outlined what we stood for and why we come to work every day. As everyone expressed themselves, the words that came out most often was ‘collaboration’, ‘family’ and ‘humility’. The common thread between every single member of our team was how we take each perspective into consideration to make each project and client a success.
One name that was always in contention was ‘The Current Agency’. There was something that felt warm and fuzzy about the name and there was never any resistance towards it. It just felt right. We knew it would require a strong story and brand to convey what it stood for, so to work we went. After lots of research, clarification, mockups, verifying trademark potential, domain options, and SEO requirements, we collectively agreed that… we were now The Current Agency. This one finally stuck.
The next step was creating the brand elements. Meet Savannah Swindle, our Rockstar Creative Director courtesy of SCAD. After creating a strong vision and mission statement, next comes the brand identity. There was hours of brain-wracking spilling onto pages and pages of chicken-scratch thumbnails and possibilities, most of which went in the trash can, and even some sketching help from my dad. “How about this?” he asked. Taking our favorites from paper into the digital realm made the decision that much harder. Tweaking this, changing that, Command C, Command V, Option-Shift-Drag...before we knew it we were at least 100-deep in logo possibilities that all could have been the one, but how do you so easily come to make such a big decision from so many options? Needless to say, we were in a rut. That was until we saw it, flipping through the endless options...there it was; our new logo, our identification, what we would be seen as for years to come. It was one of those “when you know, you know” moments.
I am now the CEO of The Current Agency. It represents our desire to provide an out-of-the-box approach to each project and by staying up-to-date on the latest industry trends and creating new ones. We believe in building deep, long-lasting client relationships and celebrating diversity of background, culture, experience, and thought. Our success comes from great teamwork and exceptional individual effort, so we strive to challenge our staff and interns, regardless of their degrees, work experience, or skills, into creative and seasoned marketing professionals through hands-on training, patience, and lots of cupcakes!