A Creative Force Joins The Fold

Innovation drives Sam Rodriguez, RockOrange’s new head of creative. The latest RockStar, Sam is a visual artist who has crafted nationally recognized campaigns through design, still images and motion pictures. A Miami native and a graduate of Miami’s Institute of Art and Design, Sam’s mastery of visual storytelling will help expand RockOrange as a creative force in marketing and communication. He joins us after more than a decade as creative director at kabookaboo in Coral Gables.

A self-taught photographer, composer and animator, Sam works rigorously to refine his craft every day. His meticulous attention to detail and desire to grow helped him turn his love for photography into marketing campaigns for large firms in the wine and sprits industry.

As a nationally recognized designer, Sam’s work has been the cornerstone of iconic projects here in South Florida and around the world. Throughout his career, he says he’s found it essential to understand every aspect of a project’s lifecycle – from idea, to creation, to execution.

Sam’s hire was noted in several South Florida media outlets, including the Miami Herald, Sun-Sentinel, AgencySpy and South Florida City Biz List.

As the leader of RockOrange’s burgeoning creative team, Sam will guide a group of talented, promising young designers as they continue to deliver the kind of beautiful, game-changing work that our clients have come to expect.

Along with his talent, Sam also brings a deep understanding of the agency world from both the employee and leadership points of view. Early in his career, he ran a successful creative business before ultimately selling. Fresh out of high school, Sam considered becoming an architect until he realized he could turn his love of art into a business unto itself. He found his passion in creating marketing campaigns that, as he describes it, “affect people’s psyches.” He loves to call out the differences in the brands he represents from the countless other choices consumers have.

And most of all, he’s not afraid of adversity—an important trait for a creative director.

“Challenges help you get out of your comfort zone and think differently about a particular project,” he said. “It can bring out the best and the worst in people. I always strive to bring out the best.”

Back to Basics: Helping Supply Chain Services Tell Its Powerful Brand Story

Supply Chain Services (SCS), a company that provides customized purchasing and supply chain solutions to companies in the hospitality, food, retail and service industries, approached RockOrange with a challenge many companies face: does your brand tell a powerful story?

The best brand stories are those that are compelling, emotional, and proactive. Often, they just need to be simple so that the target audience can connect with it. SCS wasn’t telling its brand story in a way that helped them differentiate themselves from competitors or communicate the achievements of their seasoned team. As a result, they weren’t generating the buzz and awareness they wanted among their target market.

RockOrange worked closely with SCS to craft a more inspiring story that will humanize their brand and make it more consumer-friendly by simplifying their message. Their initial messaging utilized a lot of industry jargon that was confusing for the general audience.

We knew that their content had to change drastically so anyone could understand the work they do. But content was just the beginning. We needed to take an integrated approach to completely rebrand them in order to accomplish their goal.

First, we created a tagline for SCS that summarized the message they wanted their audience to walk away with: “Leave it to Us.” SCS’ main message to their clients is that they don’t have to worry about anything, because the company will work as an extension of their team through collaborative efforts. With a relationship with more than 300 suppliers, SCS helps companies develop the supply chain strategy that best fits their unique business goals, including purchasing, contract negotiation, distribution and logistics, and global sourcing and fulfillment solutions.

Second, we revamped the look and feel of their website and worked with our digital and creative team to make some magic. The website is the most important tool any brand can have. If it seems difficult to understand or navigate, then you’ve lost your audience, and you are most definitely losing out on business. Along with the website makeover, we also created a manual to help them manage it long-term.

As we gave the site a new look, we worked closely with SCS to schedule a photo shoot that would allow us to convey a more collaborative and consumer-friendly attitude through imagery. A picture really does say a thousand words, and we needed to make sure those words were fresh and aligned with the new messaging.

And finally, the hardest step: simplifying ALL of their content to make it rock solid. Let us tell you, that was one heck of a challenge but we LOVED it! We made it easy for anyone to understand their services: what they do and how they can help businesses. The best part? They now get to leverage the new foundation we have laid out for other projects, including digital and social media efforts.

We leave it up to you to judge our work. Check out SCS’ new website and let us know what you think!

Meeting With A Design Legend

By Johanne Pradel Wilson

I’ve had the chance to do some pretty great things during my time with RockOrange. But my recent opportunity to work alongside noted design legend Paula Scher, who has been an inspiration over the course of my career, takes the cake.

First, some background: RockOrange has been working with Frost Science to strategically develop their brand voice. The museum is preparing to move to a stunning new structure in the heart of Downtown Miami at Museum Park that promises to bring a whole new — and needed — experience to the community.

As their summer 2016 ribbon-cutting draws closer, Frost Science is fine-tuning every detail to take full advantage of this singular moment. Across the aisle from us in the brand development wings is New York-based Pentagram — the renowned design firm — whose team has worked on developing Frost Science’s visual identity.

Scher, one of Pentagram’s partners, is the woman behind Frost Science’s new logo and brand mark, as well as countless other powerful brands. During a late-May brand meeting, the RockStars had the chance to meet with her and the Frost team to review the new materials.

Now, this is a woman who, over the course of her career, helped create iconic identity and branding systems, promotional materials, environmental graphics, packaging and publication designs for some major players, including Citibank, Tiffany & Co., Microsoft and Coca-Cola. Scher is among my favorite designers and art directors that have influenced my work, and her books sit on my go-to shelf with my other favorites by Paul Rand, Herb Lubalin and Stefan Sagmeister.

My love affair with her work began when I studied her iconic work for New York’s Public Theater, featuring legendary tap dancer Savion Glover. The combination of dynamic dance photography and kinetic typography clearly communicated a sense of what the experience at the theater would be. The work was — and still is — so New York.

Through Scher’s work, I learned the importance of creating work that makes people “feel.” Hearing her describe the principles behind her work for Frost Science reminded me of why I got into the creative business in the first place. She has been a constant guiding light in my career, and I was thrilled to meet her and personally share with her what her work has meant to me.

I even scored a picture!

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