Helping Twinings describe their teas

Brand writing experts Afia brought me in to help Twinings create a content strategy for their packs. I looked at how the big brands talk about their teas, interrogated Twinings’ own approach to writing, then created a naming and writing guide for them. It’s packed with practical advice and creative examples to help Twinings people across the world write uniquely enticing, alluring pack copy.

Telling the tale of Tilt

I’ve been helping Brighton digital mavens Tilt work out how to tell the world the story of who they are and what they do. It’s been fascinating pinning down the brand personality of such a diversely skilled and talented group of people – and it’s helped them sharpen up their sales process and make clearer decisions about who they work with.

Rethinking Ronseal

Ronseal wanted to take a good, hard look at how they used words. Working with Afia, I helped them understand how their brand personality had changed over the last twenty years. Then I created a new tone of voice for them and helped them develop a content strategy to bring it to life. Now they know exactly what it should say on the tin.

Talking stories at 26

I ran a Trade Secrets Masterclass for London pro writers organisation 26, sharing how I use stories to help with everything from understanding brands and solving strategic problems to managing challenging clients. I helped the attendees see narrative in a different light, and I learned a lot from them too.

Creating a shared sense of self

Another Afia job – I ran workshops in Dusseldorf, Paris and London, and interviewed people across Europe, to help an IT infrastructure provider understand its different national personalities and pin down the core values they all share. All the conversations came together in the creation of a single, universal brand personality that’s inspiring the whole company to work together as one.

Fine tuning Crisis Action

Conflict resolution charity Crisis Action asked me to put together a short, sharp better writing session for forty people at their annual get together. They were the single most international group I’ve ever worked with. It was fascinating helping them think through their different writing styles and understand which ones can work for them all.

Bringing a new charity to life

One of our big heritage organisations has just stepped out of government control to become a charity. Working through Afia, I wrote the strategy guide that explains their new status and approach to their staff, their volunteers and their donors. I followed that up by drafting their first ever annual report.

Better words for Vodafone

I spent over a year working with Vodafone for Afia. After helping define their new tone of voice, I ran an extended training programme for their agencies and several hundred of their staff. There was a fair bit of onsite coaching too, involving editing, rewriting and general word-related trouble-shooting.

Redefining the Tallow Chandlers

The Tallow Chandlers are one of the Livery Companies of the City of London. They’ve been part of its fabric for at least five hundred and fifty years. I helped them understand how to present their rich history and wide-ranging charitable activities in a way that’s directly relevant to people today, then bring it all to life in their new website.

Sharpening up Legal & General

Legal & General wanted to bring more focus to their key features documents. Afia asked me to help them rethink and redesign their writing process. We rebuilt every stage, from first briefing through document planning and writing to editing and final sign off. And I supported their new content strategy with ongoing better writing and tone of voice workshops.

An Accenture Ireland event

I travelled to Dublin to interview various senior Accenture Ireland people in the run up to a day-long, company-wide strategy event, helping them pull their speeches into shape. Then I worked on the event itself, pinning down its personality and giving its content a clear strategic focus.

Writing an audiodrama about Horace Walpole

The newly refurbished Strawberry Hill House needed a guide as quirkily splendid as it is. I dug into its history, adopted the voice of Sir Horace Walpole (inventor of the Gothic and builder of the house) and wrote the audioguide as a forty five minute drama, centred on the man, his achievement and his eccentricities.

Editing at high speed

I had a quick blast of very speedy jobs, editing documents for all sorts of different people under fairly intense time pressure. Favourites included a deeply informative British Heart Foundation presentation, a very technical piece for the European Investment Bank, several new business proposals for Mastercard, EY’s brand story and an entire book for drug campaigners Transform.