We have been very fortunate that amidst various closures and social distancing orders, the helium team has been able to work remotely and stay well connected. In a lot of ways, we were already prepared for these measures since we routinely work in non-traditional settings when we do site visits to real estate and hospitality properties. While some of us are taking photos or meeting with owners and developers, the rest of the team stays in touch with email, chat, phone, and file sharing for things like sketches, mood boards, design comps, and preliminary concepts.
In many ways, collaborating at a distance is a very positive exercise. Often, it reveals new ideas that are completely without influence from someone sitting nearby. As well, it forces us to develop concepts and designs that don’t require a lot of explanation or convincing to resonate well with other people. If they can’t be easily summarized in an email or phone call, then that can be a signal to return to the drawing board and refine, enhance, or think in a new direction. We’re used to this style of working on various projects here and there… but then we took it next level by opening a second office in Baltimore. Now, long-range collaboration is a more integrated part of our everyday process… even before it became required for public safety.
Because we spend a lot of time working with seasonal markets, a few of our clients have asked us for suggestions on how to make the most of social distancing time. This is a great time to pursue internal projects that normally get pushed aside during busier periods. A website refresh can be a smart decision right now, not just because there’s time to finesse details but also because it gives you the tools to hit the ground running when normal business activities resume. Or, it could be that this is the optimal time to finally integrate e-commerce and capture online sales. Many of our clients are focusing on social media, and looking at ways to enrich engagement and foster deeper connections with audiences. Updated logos, revamped corporate branding, breaking into new media… all are great ways to ready your business for the future, and it’s all work that helium can execute remotely. Downtime doesn’t have to be a downturn. It can be the dress rehearsal for your brand version 2.0.