The client relationships we have with our customers today is very different to that of recent years. Hart Design has built its reputation on a philosophy of creative agility and market responsiveness. It’s an approach that reflects the changing shape of the agency landscape and clients needs.

“The traditional agency model is dead and it’s gone for good,” Hart Design’s owner Mark Hart says.

Consumers make complex emotional decisions yet the process of developing marketing and advertising ideas is a traditionally rigid one.

It leaves clients to consider ideas derived from a brief that lacks insight and fails to pinpoint the real challenges. They have no idea of how creatives develop an idea and create a concept and that’s because they are invariably never invited to know.

Mark Hart founded the creative agency back in 1995. Over the years Hart Design has worked with some of New Zealand’s best-known brands.

“It’s been an incredibly rewarding journey, we’ve seen a lot of industry trends come and go and some aspects of the industry disappear altogether, but we roll with the punches and are still here today some twenty years later. One thing to come out of it for sure though, these days design agencies need to work as business partners with their clients to really understand them and their goals” Hart says.

Hart Design bills itself as an integrated ideas company. That refers to the way we work with clients, not that it offers every possible service under the sun.

“Integration isn’t about offering a range of disciplines; it’s about how you work in with the client.” Creative Director Mark Bignell says.

“For us, integration starts with the relationship and breaking down traditional ways of working. Hart Design starts work with a client pinpointing the prevailing challenge their business is facing, then building a strategy and creative process around that. We apply the upfront thinking before jumping to a premeditated solution,” he says.

That’s where the need for a creative business partner comes in. Having an agency with a view to the long term is imperative; one that understands the importance of getting to know a client’s business, the challenges it faces and where it wants its business to be not just today but well into the future.

“Diving deeper to uncover the challenges a client faces allows us to understand and develop ideas that work. We then access the channels through which to communicate the client’s message,” says Bignell.