MARKETING MIX - WMB hopes to hit a bullseye

It is always good to find an agency that views the creative process with humour.

It is always good to find an agency that views the creative process

with humour.

Or so design agency William Murray Banks hopes.

WMB, whose clients include Unilever, Whitbread and Sara Lee, has decided

that it is fed up with the litany of cliches that pop up regularly in

design briefs, such as demands for a design that is both ’reliable’ and

’accessible’, or ’premium’ but ’for all the family’, for example.

So, any prospective client arriving in the reception of WMB’s offices

off Tottenham Court Road are greeted with a price list - similar to

those found in Chinese restaurants about ten years ago - which offers an

ironic guide to the cost of services at WMB.

Ideas are charged at pounds 1 each, while special offers include: Tweaks

- a nudge on at pounds 2.50; Spectrum - a bit of everything at pounds

17.50; Radical - Doing a Tango at pounds 19.95.

’We thought we’d inject a bit of humour into the process,’ says founding

partner Richard Murray.

’Although there is an element of truth in what it says. Design is so

oversubscribed at the moment that clients shop on price the whole


Just in case any client misses the joke, the point is reinforced in

WMB’s meeting room. This includes a crystal ball and a highly original

dart board.

Instead of numbers, the dart board allows players to match up a list of

words commonly found in design briefs.

The elusive 20 is replaced by ’aspirational’. Others words listed

include ’reliable’, ’natural’, ’confident’, ’positive,’ ’respected’,

’optimistic’ and ’premium’.

’The hope is that they then can’t ask for one of these things, because

we’ve already taken the mickey out of it,’ says Murray.

Mix is optimistic that clients will also see the funny side.


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