E.A. Hughes

E.A. Hughes

the organization

E.A. Hughes & Co. integrates deep and robust industry experience with a uniquely personal approach to retail and consumer executive search. Founded in 1991 by Elaine Hughes, their sole mission is to help clients put the best executive teams in place. People in consumer-driven businesses that are responsible for aligning their executive team to corporate goals and emerging global industry opportunities, see selecting the right person as an art form. So they turn to Elaine and her team as their executive search partner, to help define the needs of their organization and uncover the total individual, making sure the position and person address their long-term growth strategy.

the need

Together with Elaine and managing partner Ann MacCarthy, we identified a need for several market-facing improvements to build on the brand identity and reputation of the firm, while enhancing and extending the brand’s reach through various communications channels. As part of a previous engagement, we developed a list of prioritized initiatives as a way to tackle the improvements, with one project building the foundation for the next. Because the website was Elaine’s highest priority, we integrated a brief branding and content strategy into the overall website redesign process.

the tactics

Artisan Etc…

  • advised on considering each individual improvement as part of an integrated approach to the overall E.A. Hughes marketing & communications strategy
  • crafted brand identity guidelines to lay the groundwork for a new website design and functionality, which to a great extent helped determine the right approach for other communications
  • identified key audience personas, their needs and motivations, what influences and barriers they had when choosing talent for their organization
  • developed a set of key messages and a value proposition to persuade members of the target audience
  • designed a content strategy and style guide to inform and direct the website navigation, content creation, image selection, social media (LinkedIn and Twitter) and other client-facing communications
  • helped steer the client’s chosen web developer towards website features and functionality to meet our strategic goals; developed website guidelines for the developer to follow
  • directed internal E.A. Hughes staff in their critical roles to collect data, provide feedback and help prod for a response from stakeholders when needed
  • enlisted a highly-qualified writer, collaborated on a strategy to develop a series of industry insight articles on behalf of thought leaders in the firm
  • collaborated with a graphic designer to create graphical representation of key industry and functional areas of expertise
  • created website copy and developed formatting guidelines for the various types of content
  • developed Twitter and LinkedIn guidelines, brought the firm’s profiles up to date with new identify, and facilitated a training call for staff on how to use social media to extend the reach of the brand
  • documented step-by-step website processes to guide internal E.A. Hughes staff on populating the website after launch
  • crafted email messaging and design announcing the launch of the new website and calling attention to two new insightful articles; advised on email distribution –> View the Email

the result

By taking an integrated approach to our top three priority initiatives, we achieved our goal of enhancing and extending the brand’s reach through various communications channels – primarily a new website – while establishing a clear brand identity and content roadmap that can inform and guide future communications.

In addition, the E.A. Hughes staff is able to make content updates to the website easily and has started engaging more on LinkedIn as a way to extend the reach of the firm’s and their own personal brand.

Finally, as part of the content strategy, a new initiative is underway to produce thought leadership in the form of insightful industry articles on a regular basis, as a way to keep the website content fresh and continue to provide valuable and engaging information to their audience.

Julie provided excellent guidance to our team in formulating a contemporary update to our brand while retaining the historical integrity associated with our long history in fashion consumer executive search. She was patient with our team as we went about the business of servicing our clients.

Julie has an educational approach, taking time to document and educate us on the importance of each step of the process, so that our team is able to build on the work we did together.

~ Elaine Hughes, CEO