LA+B: The importance of achieving balance
By Malin Norman | Photos: Love for art and business
All marketers are in search of potent, sustainable campaigns. The holy grail is to create programmes that both build brand loyalty and gain customer traction. But with the marketing landscape constantly changing, there are fewer agencies that rise to the challenge of determining a creative leap while delivering extraordinary execution. LA+B seeks to achieve both.
Using a unique methodology, LA+B helps its clients in an agile, pragmatic and innovative manner to conquer this increasingly discontinuous world. Love for art and business, simply known as LA+B, is a unique customer experience agency. It was ahead of its time when first set up in a cellar in an unfashionable part of Stockholm in 2007. Today, it stands out because of the panoply of expertise.
LA+B is a team of thinkers and doers, a careful symbiosis of the strategic and practical, of dreams and ideas brought to life and then delivered with a ‘punch’. “Our perspective from the outset was design thinking – yet from there, we learnt the importance of execution – and thus we coined the phrase ‘from thinking to doing’,” says Jonas Lundin, CEO.
Lundin leads the strategy unit at LA+B, but he also has a background in industrial design. “Some of the methodologies I learnt in my industrial era are applicable to the work we carry out for clients, regardless of whether it is less visible work such as consumer insight definition or the more dramatic, high-profile, technically challenging TV production work.”
Consumer journeys allied to the sustainability agenda
Nearly every client brief that LA+B receives has a sustainability question to be considered and answered. “Every brief is going to bump into this challenge,” says Lundin, proudly adding: “That’s why I insist that the senior team reviews every new client brief together and determines the right approach from a sustainability standpoint. We are currently doing an important campaign for one of Sweden’s most renowned, fastest-growing tech companies that aims to achieve sustainable recruitment and development of world-class talent.”
Lundin emphasises the importance of mapping the user journeys, for employees as well as stakeholders and consumers, and explains that LA+B designs important touch points for businesses on this journey. “A brand can interact with the consumer all the way from initial communication through their experience, and eventually to the recycling of the product – this is self-explanatory. But when designing each step, we have noticed the importance of developing parallel employee journeys and the need for internal tools for implementation.”
Included in sustainability are also diversity and inclusive design. “This is actually at the core of what many industrial designers try to do; they look at how products can fit everyone, regardless of who you are and what culture you’re from. At LA+B, we apply this to big corporations and service design as well. And again, we see the importance of having the researchers and product developers on board to manifest the work within the organisation.”
Agile branding and design in a fastpaced environment
Not everything needs a long-term perspective, though, as seen in the changed consumer behaviour during the pandemic. In some areas with a previously more analogue approach, the team had to look at digital solutions to how brands can operate and be more efficient in this new era.
“A lot of people have had more time to think and might have entered a phase of reflection,” says the CEO. “They might question what is right and what is wrong to consume; perhaps they stocked up on too much food initially and realised that they have a lot of waste at home as a result.”
As a consequence of changes in consumer behaviour, many brands have been forced to think differently. “There is a higher demand for better products and services now, and we see more sensitivity to consumers’ needs and requests for more sustainable solutions. In particular our industrial clients need help in re-designing the user journey and developing products and services for the new normal.”
LA+B also collaborate with TV programmes as well as computer games and social media campaigns, sectors with extremely fast turnaround times even before the pandemic. “It’s an important part to our mix, where we can apply our skills and redefine them reactively, since everything has to be up to date. Here, we can quickly measure and adjust as we get instant user feedback in terms of how the viewer or user behaves and reacts to particular touch points. We see how the fast-paced and the long-term thinking nurture each other, which helps us create better outcomes for our clients.”
LA+B is a full-service brand experience agency based in Stockholm. Its clients include Tetra Pak, Orkla, Saab, Spotify, Atlas Copco, Assa Abloy, Klarna, Cargotech and Nobel Media Group, to name a few. Web: www.loveartbusiness.se Facebook: loveartbusiness Instagram: @loveartbusiness LinkedIn: company/love-for-art-and-business
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