BY LYNDA PAPESCH
Spreading awareness across diverse media is second-nature to Nelson marketing and branding specialist HotHouse.
‘Designers for business’ is part of its own branding; a modern-day motto that encompasses HotHouse’s broad spectrum of services ranging from full graphic design and branding to promotion and web design, development and hosting services, and during more recent years, to intensive digital and social media planning.
The largest creative design company in the Top of the South, with a staff about 17, HotHouse is headed by directors Jane Cunliffe and Marie Waterhouse, and director/creative director Allan Innes- Walker. In addition to servicing clients locally, HotHouse has numerous clients and partners throughout New Zealand. The portfolio includes SMEs, the Nelson City Council, Tasman District Council, NZ Fish & Game, Ministry of Social Development, Hospitality NZ, NMIT, PSA and NZ Oil & Gas.
‘We’ve got the team to do everything well, which means we’re versatile and committed,’ Allan explains. ‘We’re completely invested in our clients’ success, serving up solutions wherever they’re needed – on or off line.’
An increasing number of clients are Wellington-based, and many want to avail themselves of HotHouse’s digital and social media expertise. That’s Ali Kimber‘s forte.
The digital and social media strategist uses her skills to help clients formulate and action clever strategies. “We identify each client’s vision and goals, then look at opportunities and other relevant activities that will maximise the business benefits of the major digital initiatives available to that client.”Projects range from helping individuals set up personal social media platforms, such as Facebook, through to advanced digital strategies. “Every client’s needs are di erent so we work with them to evolve solutions specifically tailored to their needs.
“We help to make engagement tangible, to make sure the targeted market is getting the right message. And we empower people and businesses to carry on themselves. We care about our clients; we want them to grow their businesses.”
Content, target audience and potential reach are all taken into account. “You need to have a strategy,” says Ali. “ Think of it as part of the overall marketing plan, not just an add-on. And it must be current, interesting and up-to-date. Many people fail to update social media sites, which mean they are not effectively reaching their target audiences.” Many HotHouse clients are businesses that recognise the benefits of social media but don’t have the staff , technical ability or time to embrace it. With a technical, research and photography background, Ali can provide clients with a complete package or just help with certain steps such as development and setting up, or that crucial follow-through. “A lot of people think they can just chuck it out there and that is all they need to do. Managing content is a vital, ongoing process. It’s all about creating a relationship and that needs a dedicated person driving it.
“We can be that dedicated person, or we can set it up for the client to manage themselves, with help from time to time when and if they need it.”