Previous Work

Arndale Centre

After the bombing of 1996, the Manchester Arndale Shopping Centre was heavily redeveloped. Robson Brown was tasked with rebranding the shopping centre into an internationally recognised retail outlet, while also developing its advertising strategy for press and TV. Robson Brown developed a wide range of press and TV campaigns including the very successful ‘fashion on your doorstep’ and the extremely popular monthly magazine Pulse. The launch and further publicising through Robson Brown’s marketing was a huge success, with The Arndale skyrocketing to become one of the most popular and successful Shopping malls in the country.

Benfield Motors

Benfield Motor Group is an independent family owned business that was founded in the North East in 1957. They have moved along way in the past 20 years since we have worked with them. They are now one of the largest, best known private companies in the motor retailing market with 30 dealerships across the North East, North West, Yorkshire and Scotland.

Our campaign activity has developed their brand through all areas of their business from new cars, used cars, servicing, on site and of course internally where the family “caring” philosophy is embraced.

Our strategy has been to buck the standard, break convention and rise above the competition. Customers expect to be treated in an industry standard way but the Benfield way is to help customers make the right decision when buying a car – no hard sell just a great experience.

Chester Zoo

Annual visitor levels had fallen by 10% to below the 1m mark. We were appointed to rectify this position set against strong competition from more modern threats such as computer games. Our strategy was to bring the Zoo to life. Instead of seeing animals in books or on TV, By actually coming to the Zoo they would see them for real. Hence the creative platform ‘It’s Real’. The through the line campaign attracted 1.1m visitors in its first year with a 29% increase in year two. Group bookings also increased by 54%. Real results.


We have worked with DFDS Seaways for 10 years, taking over the strategic development of their marketing communications from JWT Europe. It was inevitable that telephone and agent sales would move to individual bookings on the web, but we needed to manage that migration whilst maintaining the brand presence and bring customers into the mini-cruise market.

Online booking and CRM is only one aspect of the booking process and we have maintained a strategic offline campaign to educate, persuade and direct customers to the web. The campaign is refreshed each year and we use a brand tracking survey to monitor our creative and media strategy.

international centre for life
LIFE is an educational establishment with a mission to inspire interest in the sciences through an imaginative programme of exhibitions and events. Their mission extends to the provision of state of the art facilities on-site to support world class scientific research in medicine.
We started working with LIFE prior to the original build and our first task was to develop a branding strategy for the centre ahead of the construction. Our strategy worked for the visitor attraction but also had some synergy with the other key areas, so there was a degree of cohesion across the whole offering.
The brand identity we developed gave the architects impetus and they revised plans to use the colours across numerous elements of the physical structure of the building. A brand manual was developed and we produced a range of marketing collateral including TV, radio, press, outdoor and brochures.


In a marketplace rife with imitators, Malmaison wanted to reaffirm their position as the forerunner of the boutique hotel concept. We gave them their mojo back. Everything we designed from ads to literature and inhouse promotional materials introduced a particular wit and individual tone. We brought back the Malmaison personality and gave it a unique character. We gave it life. Mal life.


When a large property consortium decided to create a revolutionary new business park, we set about building an entirely new brand. One that wouldn’t just break the rules, but one that would set them. In fact, it was to become the ultimate business park, which would not just maximise business, time and potential, but also maximise a work life balance. So what better name than Maxim? A fresh new place to go about your everyday life. Its location, between Edinburgh and Glasgow, led to the creation of distinctive graphic arrows with a fresh look and tone of voice that’s as inspirational as the park itself.
This was to be the largest business space project ever to be undertaken in Scotland and all would be delivered in one phase – a big task. 756,000 sq ft over 10 buildings. Our approach included close working relationships with the parks owners, agents and architects, so that the brand could be woven into all areas of the project. Our work encompassed name, identity, literature, film, CGi, photography, website, interactive agents presentation, advertising, marketing suite and signage – the complete project experience.


Metrocentre was one of the first major new-build out-of-town shopping centres and has just celebrated its 25th Anniversary. We successfully worked in partnership with them for over 20 years taking the business back from London agency Saatchi & Saatchi. We were responsible for strategic development, creative direction, media planning and buying, and in common with most retail clients, the key objectives were to grow footfall and extend dwell-time. Those objectives have been fulfilled by creating standout and offering ‘fresh’ reasons to visit. The centre has seen a number of re-developments which are excellent motivators in persuading current visitors to shop more often and new visitors to ‘come and try’.

Mill Garages

Historically a Volvo has been perceived as robust, solid, safe and not the nimblest or prettiest of cars. They were certainly well built and not the choice of someone looking for a sporty set of wheels. This is how their marketing positioned the brand, and it certainly worked.

But things have changed rapidly in the last two years. Starting with the baby C30 the hard lines were made smoother, sexier and much more appealing to a younger audience. It also looked more like a fun car to drive, and it was. These changes are being introduced across the range and the S60 has even been praised as a good alternative to a BMW 3 series.

Mill has five Volvo outlets throughout the North East and North Yorkshire. To coincide with the brand’s realignment, we were appointed to handle Mill’s advertising which historically had also been rather boring. Our brief was to inject some extra spice back into the work. We did this by making the work look and feel much sexier with cleaner layouts and much punchier headlines.

Newcastle College