How did you start working with Martin et Karczinski, Mr Meise?
A private contact recommended the agency to me. We needed a catalogue at the time – but what we got was a brand – and yes, a catalogue as well of course! We have been working together since then, initially on Axel Meise Licht, then on Axel Meise as the designer brand with Occhio as the product brand. And finally on Occhio as the design brand that it has become today.
How does communication and brand development differ in the lighting industry from other industry sectors?
I don’t initially think there are any fundamental differences: the lighting industry sells products too. There are other additional elements. Light itself is a medium that you can’t touch so it’s hard to convey. The interplay with architecture and what’s around it is also a factor. In that respect, there are more dimensions and so it’s perhaps more complex than with other products.
What sets Martin et Karczinski’s apart?
You always get more than you expect. They just think in an integrated way, not just about ›marketing‹ or ›graphics‹ or ›a new logo‹ – their approach is truly integrated. As a result, I now understand the significance of a brand, its power and mode of action to be crucial for the entire organisation.
What do you mean exactly?
Brand management is initially a management responsibility, but you have to take the whole organisation on the journey with you, otherwise it won’t work. Understanding of the brand should be implemented at every level of the organisation – only then you achieve added value. In addition, Martin et Karczinski’s range of services is not restricted to consultancy: the agency also offers conception and implementation from a single supplier. This full-service offer also differentiates Peter Martin and Daniel Karczinski.
You have worked on many projects over the years – is there one that for you has the greatest relevance for Occhio?
Yes, the claim ›light is evolution‹ and its importance for the stories that can be developed from it for the brand. What is exceptional about Peter Martin is that he never thinks in categories like exhibition stand or catalogue, he always goes straight to the meta-level: ›What is the story, what is the big topic?‹ That leads to a basic idea which we further develop together. One nice example of this is the design of the exhibition stand: behind it is the development, the evolution, of the claims. Most recently with the ›evolution plus‹ exhibition stand featuring the Occhio brand message in plus signs.
What sort of companies would you recommend to work with Martin et Karczinski?
Companies with high standards. Small, medium and also large companies that have certain expectations with respect to their product, their culture, their values, their image and external perceptions and see further potential in them. Martin et Karczinski can also help to unleash this potential.