“These days it’s not so much about getting the keys to a building,” says Andrew Kelly (of Auction Rooms, Counter and Small Batch), explaining the moment when a new venue becomes a tangible proposition for everyone concerned. “It’s more about when you see this.” He’s looking through the final set of branding concepts for Filter, his new CBD venue that will champion, as the name suggests, filter coffee, matched with the clean Nordic flavours of Smorrebrod open sandwiches.
For the fifth episode of The Keys, Kelly visits Chris Lucas at Chin Chin to talk branding and communication. “The sooner you get the message out, the better,” says Lucas, “you’d be surprised how many people want to tune in.” Lucas’ venues are almost as well known for their bold branding and inventive marketing as they are for their food. For instance, Lucas’ Richmond pizza restaurant Baby hosts its own staff-focused video series on Facebook and his yet to open Korean barbecue venue Kong already has a sizeable following on Instagram.
Two months after their initial meeting, the pair meet again at The Hungry Workshop design and letterpress studio in Northcote, where Kelly unveils the name for the new venue along with its visual identity. “The filter coffee experience is very pure, very simple,” says designer Simon Hipgrave, “so we wanted to develop a brand identity that fits with that philosophy.” It’s an approach that works well with Kelly’s ethos, as he puts it, “Simpler is always better.”
Check out bankofmelbourne.com.au/thekeys for more small business branding and communication advice.