I'm tremendously proud of what I achieved at HighKey, a start-up in the better-for-you food space. I walked into a very big challenge to quickly whip the creative pipeline into shape.
I'm very proud of what I accomplished at HighKey, a startup in the better-for-you food space. I walked into a very big challenge to quickly whip the creative pipeline into shape, laying a foundation for a future-proof creative process that could be scaled while withstanding extremely fast growth. I stress-tested these processes, proved their monetary value and made the creative team a lot more productive.
Every day I went to work at HighKey felt like I'd won the Lottery. I was so fortunate getting to have a hand in building something incredible from the ground up. It didn't feel like a job, it felt like a mission. "Unlock Potential" was the value statement and I took that very seriously every single day.
I joined this direct-to-consumer CPG brand in Q4 2019, just before Thanksgiving. My first creative project was a series of digital ads for Black Friday/Cyber Monday. Soon after, I was managing the production pipeline for thousands of pieces of collateral to support the fast-paced, ambitious brand.
With a "move fast and break things" mentality, HighKey launches a new product, on average, every 10 days. They do this through 3 channels:
When I joined, there was a team of just 25 people supporting the business and a culture of "if it's meant to be, it's up to me" so it was very common for everyone to not only do their role, but have a hand in any area where they're able to add value. And I was no exception.
Coming from a background heavy in producing video for corporates and TV, I was pretty hooked on making everything I touched as polished as possible. HighKey has a solid direct-response strategy and I quickly learned that when getting people to click-to-buy, ugly can be better.
By ugly, I mean creating content that looks user-generated or perhaps odd in some way to arrest attention. The goal here is to get the scrolling audience to stop. But not just stop. Watch, engage and BUY.
I believe that creative assets need to drive results, not just be attractive. And the biggest barrier to this success is poor design which forgets, not just the audience, but the individual person who's viewing this collateral. And not just the person but the environment they may be in when they're exposed to a brand's products, digital ads or out-of-home marketing. What was their journey and what do we want them to do next?
So with this interest in UX, diversity and inclusion, I identified accessibility issues embedded in the brand which would make it inaccessible to our core demographic.
One of my great pet peeves in visual brand is excessive use of BLOCK CAPS. So with the HighKey digit al marketing team, I conducted A/B testing on Facebook ads to explore a hypothesis that this was a barrier to reaching our audience in a meaningful way. As it turned out, we experienced up to 1200% uptick in audiences watching 100% of the sentence case version videos right to the very end. For the ALL CAPS versions, viewers were falling away after the first 3 seconds. We also experienced an increase in sales conversions (600%) on sentence case versions.
In my time at HighKey, I discovered a passion for the direct-to-consumer space and it was an honor to be present at the ground-level of the next big food brand.
Some of the below assets I oversaw as art director and some I shot myself in my home studio