Does Tony Stark Need a Brand Refresh?

Fictional Brand Analysis

'Tis the holiday season! This year, I thought I would treat myself professionally by indulging in one of my passions: Pop culture analysis.

While pop culture and marketing cross over quite a lot, I've decided to focus on fictional brands and their logos. Throughout books, films, television, and comics, many famous fictional companies and businesses have fizzed, flourished, and failed. So today, I'm taking it upon myself to analyze the branding of some of the most popular fictional companies.

Let the analysis begin!



If you’ve seen a Marvel movie over the past fifteen years, you’ve probably heard of Stark Industries. Run by the charismatic Tony Stark, AKA Iron Man, Stark Industries was a weapons developer before Tony had a crisis of conscience and moved away from weapons towards advanced technologies.

With its bold, slanted font and arrow-based imagery, the logo communicates a confident, relentless push toward the future. Perfect for a company specializing in advanced technology!

Or at least it would be. Stark Industries may want to consider a brand refresh. Their logo hasn't changed since they moved away from weapons development, and since Tony Stark came out as a costumed superhero, one of his inventions, the Ultron robot, nearly took over the world and killed thousands in the process. In fact, within the Marvel Cinematic Universe, multiple villains have been motivated by their hatred for Tony and his company.

With all these negative associations, a refreshed logo, and a new communications strategy, moving away from the aggressive tone of their past branding may be the right call.






From the hilarious Arrested Development sitcom comes the Bluth company, a real estate development firm. Founded by George Bluth Sr., the company was managed by his son, Michael Bluth, following his incarceration for stealing from the company.

While the Bluth Company is beset by problems, its logo is not one of them. The bright, flat colors are slightly retro today, even though they made sense in the early 2000s. And the font placement within a building sends a subtle message: The homes we build are so solid that even our logo lives in one.

Of course, this couldn't be farther from the truth. Bluth Company homes are often shoddily built in poor locations. Coupled with their frequent public scandals, the Bluth Company is a PR disaster. Logo notwithstanding, they may want to focus on the fundamentals of their company, clean up their public image, and communicate their successes as they come - if they come.








If your name is Homer Simpson, there's only one beer you drink: Duff Beer. Parodying cheap American beers, Duff Beer is heavily marketed and widely consumed throughout the Simpsons universe.

Their logo, consisting of thick, playful, friendly letters spelling out "Duff," sits inside a white rectangle. Below it, in all caps, is the word "BEER." It's not even a parody of Budweiser, with its cursive font and stylized insignia. It's a parody of Bud Light. The simplicity of the logo carries with it working-class vibes, which make sense for the demographic Duff targets most heavily.

Despite its simplicity, or perhaps because of it, Duff Beer has been a rock-solid brand. They are profitable enough to maintain their own branded theme park, and their spokesperson, the beer-themed superhero Duffman, has only become more relevant as the popularity of superheroes has grown since its conception.

However, in our modern world, Relish Marketing would suggest toning down some of the more hyper-masculine aspects of Duff’s communication strategies. For instance, Duffman appearing flanked by bikini models in commercials could read as misogynist to many Americans.

That concludes our fictional brand round-up! What is your favorite fictional brand? Sound off in the comments below! Actually, we don't have comments, so here's a link to our contact form.  We’d genuinely love to hear from you!

These Changes will Impact your Marketing Agency in 2023

Over the past year, companies have been learning to thrive in a world that is, in many ways, remarkably different than one from two years ago. The ways we conduct business is changing and becoming more virtual. The brands of today are not the ones of yesterday, and few organizations have survived the past few years without changing their marketing operations and strategies. While the pace of change shows no sign of slowing, we’re taking this opportunity to pinpoint a few of the more impactful developments we’ve seen over the past year which we’re confident will continue to remain relevant in 2023.

Urgent Deadlines

In 2022, deadlines shortened–considerably. You’ve felt it yourself: the overwhelming urgency from clients who need their work now. In the wake of technological advancements and a global pandemic, many companies have found the need to pivot or modify their business and branding in a timely manner. This requires marketers–especially inhouse marketing departments and their agencies–to adapt with more intentional workflows that enable quicker and more efficient response to client needs. Project management tools like Teamwork can help swamped agencies stay ahead of deadlines, and we highly recommend daily communication and task reporting, so team members stay up to date on deliverables.

Video Ads Continue to Dominate Social Media

Across all social media platforms, we’ve seen consistent data confirming that video ads hold interest for longer and generate more clicks than static ads. If you’re looking to communicate to a customer base in 2023, the shift to incorporate more video content is essential to remaining relevant in the market. Video content creation tools like Canva, and the advanced Adobe Premiere, can help create and edit high quality videos. Today’s consumers are also more comfortable than ever before with user generated content like product reviews and unboxing videos featured on Instagram and Tik-Tok and other social media platforms.

Authentic Communications

We’ve spoken before about the growing importance of authenticity in marketing. More and more, consumers want to interact with like-minded people and brands. It’s vital that agencies learn to communicate to their target audience in a way that feels real and authentic. Influencer and consumer-generated marketing continues to pay dividends, and cultural savvy is a must-have for brands looking to generate a buzz with the customers of today.

Disruptive Branding and Anti-Branding

Many consumers have grown tired of flat corporate art styles and branding that feels overly glossy and salesy. We’ve seen companies switch from overly produced marketing emails to simple communications that feel minimally designed. In other sectors, some companies have embraced asymmetrical lettering and packaging, such as Absolut Vodka bottles intentionally spattered with paint.

As the business world transforms around us, these marketing trends are signposts for the new era. While surprises no doubt live on our collective horizon, we are transitioning into 2023 excited for change and prepared to thrive.

marketing strategy

Andrea Williams

marketing strategy

Andrea Williams

Senior Account Executive

Challenge conqueror
Change embracer
Organization fanatic
Versatile collaborator
Holistic Explorer

Clients rely on Andrea’s commitment to partnership and incisive ability to deliver insights. Her natural curiosity leads her to take deep dives into trends and projections. She insists on “following the data” to develop a deep understanding of each business’ unique needs. She comes to Relish with more than a decade of experience leading strategic initiatives, conducting and interpreting research, and solving problems for businesses across multiple sectors. She’s also earned her significant technology chops with a Digital Marketing certification from Meta and completion of General Assembly’s HTML, CSS and Web Design Circuit. A certified Project Management Professional (PMP®), Andrea rapidly grasps complexities, turning intricate, multi-faceted initiatives into projects with clear, achievable milestones.

Jacob Campbell

Jacob Campbell

Digital Media Director

Relentless achiever
Team player
Motivating coach
Challenge wrestler
Responsive listener

The digital marketing world is evolving so rapidly that it takes a combination of long-term vision and quick decision making to achieve results. It requires the ability to grapple with large amounts of complex information. Fortunately for our clients, those skills come naturally to Jacob, who learned and coaches them on an actual wrestling mat. “Wrestling is all about finding ways to overcome obstacles and do what seems impossible. Digital marketing is much the same.” He backs up his capabilities with IAB Digital Marketing and Media Foundations certifications, some of the highest credentials available in the digital media industry. And it all comes together in the advantages he delivers to clients.

Leigh Flemister

Leigh Flemister

Marketing Project Manager

Zen Organizer
Detail Diva
Dot Connector
Outdoors Enthusiast
Project Sherpa

Leigh keeps our projects moving forward smoothly, on time and within budget, having previously managed thousands of complex combinations of projects for diverse organizations including Stein Mart, Visiting Nurse Health System, and Bellsouth Mobility. Where most people see charts, spreadsheets and schedules, Leigh recognizes patterns, discrepancies, and the best ways to resolve them. She combines big picture vision and a tight grasp of details with the ability to communicate both. And she uses those abilities to streamline processes for our team members and our clients.

Noah Chen

Noah Chen

Noah Chen

Noah Chen

Account Executive

Generous Listener
Wry observer
Insightful tactician
Multifaceted thinker
Adventurous brainstormer

Noah’s passion, attention to detail, and creative prowess can be seen in everything he does – from his writing to the time he devotes to his clients. To Noah, every problem has a solution, and every message can find its audience. He developed his enthusiastic and vibrant communication skills working on projects for a wide range of clients, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Natural Awakenings Atlanta, and Brain Bytes Creative.

Every Business Needs Video – Or Does It?

If you're a marketer, you know that great content will earn attention and engagement. But there are loads of different types of content. Blog posts, infographics, article reprints, newsletters – and let's not forget video marketing, which has become essential to businesses for several reasons:

  • People prefer it. Research says that 68% of people would rather learn about new products and services on video than on other media. And 87% say they want more video content.1
  • It delivers significant improvements:2
    • Emails with video get 2-3 times more click-throughs than emails without video. 60% of viewers will keep watching a video for at least two minutes.
    • 94% of video marketers say the medium strengthens people’s grasp of their products and services.
    • 81% of video marketers say it generates leads. And more than a third of people who view a product video will follow up with a call to the vendor.
  • Search engines like it. Google finds combinations of text, imagery and video more valuable than any single medium alone.3 How much more valuable? Websites with embedded video are 53 times more likely to show up first on Google than sites without video4
  • Video can make good stories better. If your business has a powerful story, video can help you tell it in a highly compelling way, with music and movement that tap into visceral emotions, at a pace that you control.
  • It generates excellent ROI. 83% of businesses say so.1 Video marketing can be leveraged and repurposed across multiple channels, including your blog, your web site, your advertising and social media. It can also give you critical business insights about what components of your message are getting through to your audience.

So, are there reasons why a business shouldn’t use video marketing? There are. The medium itself isn’t a magic wand. Your videos must be strategic. Which means that before you record a single frame, you should answer some key questions: Who needs to see the video? What should they know and feel when they see it? And what do you expect them to do next?

Likewise, if you can’t commit to quality, don’t invest in video. There are different types of videos for different needs and budgets. Not everyone needs to feel like a broadcast-quality TV episode or documentary. But if your script is weak, your lighting is inconsistent, your graphic resolution is poor, your sound is fuzzy, or your pacing and transitions are awkward, even a modest investment in video will be wasted.

Bottom line: There are so many times when video marketing can help your business. And video usage is increasing rapidly. On Facebook, users watch 100 million hours of video per day. On YouTube, it’s 5 billion. And both sites have shown view increases of 99% (YouTube) and 258% (Facebook). Capitalize on this trend and its advantages, and you’ll take a giant step toward building your business and your brand.


When to Use Video – And How to Make Yours Better

Video has become essential to today’s businesses for many reasons. And there are so many different types of video you could try – ranging from broadcast-style documentaries to interviews, featuring live presenters, voiceovers and music, with or without special effects and animation. There’s no hard and fast rule for when to use video as part of your communications strategy – but our experience has shown us that it helps businesses:

  • Improve Audience Engagement: Video grabs attention and keeps people focused longer for a better impression of your brand. A short, ten- to thirty-second video entertains and informs your audience faster than reading can. You could point out key areas to visit on your site, showcase your latest product or promote an upcoming speaking engagement. Whether you post it on your website, link to it on your YouTube channel or live-stream it on social media, it’s all about giving your audience what they need, when, where and how they need it.
  • Deepen Connections: Once you have your audience, give them a more in-depth view of how you can help them out. Show your product in a way that they can use. Communicate the latest statistics in an engaging manner. Preface your next speaking engagement with a short welcome. Any of these video options help create an emotional connection with your brand and reinforce relationships.
  • Increase Understanding: People may use your product or engage with the service you offer, but they still need help understanding the many ways that they can benefit from it. That’s when you need an explainer video. Your software may require an instructional video to get people started, or to show some more advanced functionality.  Your company may need to help encourage employees to start using a new technology system.  Certain product knowledge may seem obvious to you – but not to your clients.  There are so many times when the right video can help people better understand your business that it’s hard to list them all.

Here’s one more important thing to keep in mind:  Video can help you do these things, but it’s still just a tool in your arsenal – and like any tool, it only works if you hone it and use it correctly. “How To Make Better Videos?” isn’t a short-answer question. But we have identified a few things that consistently help our clients.

We can’t overemphasize the importance of planning ahead. Establish your strategy in advance, with careful research and a clear, well-honed message.  After all, the cleverest video in the world won’t work for you if it isn’t strategic for your business. Likewise, complete your script and storyboard with enough time to make sure that all the right people approve it before production begins. It costs more to make changes during or after production than before it. A lot more.

One more bonus tip: Just like Photoshop won’t make anyone a great graphic designer, cameras and apps alone won’t be enough to make anyone a great videographer (and we bet you’ve seen some pretty awful videos that prove this point). Professional scriptwriting, graphics and production may cost a bit on the front end, but they should pay off in results long after the video is complete.

relish adobe programs

Which Adobe Program Should I Use?


With so many Adobe products on the market, it is common for designers to become confused over which app to use for their projects. Many Adobe programs have overlapping capabilities, but each has a primary focus and specialty and while it may be possible to use more than one for any given project, only one will be optimal. So, how do you choose between them?

Adobe Illustrator vs. Adobe InDesign

We listed these two first because many designers mix them up. Adobe Illustrator is (as its name reinforces) an illustration program. Its strength is its ability to help designers create vector-based graphics, making it ideal for digital illustrations, typography, icons and of course, logos. Vector-based illustrations never pixelate — which means that illustrations can be adjusted to any size with no risk of pixelation or reduction in quality.

Adobe InDesign is a page layout program with powerful tools to help you design digital and print documents like books, magazines, newspapers, posters, and interactive PDFs. It’s great for projects that require large bodies of text and imagery. This program allows the designer the choice of embedding graphics in documents or simply linking to them, which keeps the file size down, especially when combining multiple elements on a page.

Both programs include powerful typographical tools, enabling precision control over the positioning of individual letters and blocks of text, as well as other capabilities. The key to determining which program will be best for your needs is the end result. Are you creating a brand or a magazine? Does your project have a lot of copy or a little? How important is page layout? How many images involved – and how much control will you need over them?

If your project will rely more on page layout than on vector-based control over your graphics, then you should probably use InDesign, whose handy grid tools allow for easily structured, well-designed layouts. If your project requires multiple illustrations, typographical effects, and vector graphics, your best bet is going to be Illustrator. Since both programs offer similar typographical, placement and adjustment tools, many projects can go either way – but ultimately, one is meant to be used for page layout, and the other for illustration.

Adobe Illustrator vs. Adobe Photoshop

This has become an age-old question among designers. The answer, however, is clearer than whether to use Illustrator or InDesign because the capabilities of Illustrator and Photoshop are so clearly defined. Illustrator is again, for creating and editing vector-based graphics. Photoshop is a pixel-or raster-based program. Vector-based programs create mathematically-drawn lines (through Bézier curves) that do not lose integrity when resized (even to extremes). This makes it ideal for illustrations that will be used in a wide variety of media and sizes (think logos and typography).

Photoshop is designed to work with pixel-based imagery, such as photography. It’s also ideal for creating web-based designs since computer screens are also pixel-based. If you’re still not sure which program is right for your project, ask yourself: are you creating an illustration that will need to be used in multiple sizes, or is the project more photographic? If the answer is ultimately, “both,” then you may want to work with your pixel-based images in Photoshop before creating the final graphic in Illustrator.

Adobe Photoshop vs. Adobe Lightroom

This comparison can be confusing for beginners because both programs have virtually identical capabilities — and Lightroom is technically a sub-program of Photoshop. Yes, you read that correctly. The difference lies not in functionality, but with the number of images the user will need to process. Photoshop includes a tool called Camera Raw, which pops up every time a file in a camera’s native photographic format (e.g., .RAW, .NEF, etc.) is opened. This tool is virtually identical to Lightroom’s photo editing tools.

So, why bother with Lightroom at all? Lightroom is designed to edit large amounts of photos with lossless (non-destructive) algorithms, whereas Photoshop has both lossy (destructive) and lossless algorithms. So it comes as no surprise that many photographers use Lightroom to quickly batch process and edit large numbers of photos. Photoshop, however, is the more powerful choice for heavy, individual photo editing. Granted, Photoshop has some batch processing abilities but lacks the library and organizational capabilities of Lightroom.

In short, if you have a large number of photos that need to be organized and edited in a similar fashion (e.g., they all require a similar kind of color correction), Lightroom is the way to go. If you only have a few photos, or your images require more intricate editing, Photoshop is a better tool for the job.

Adobe Premiere Pro vs. Adobe After Effects

Both of these programs are great tools for video editing and special effects. As with other programs in the Adobe product suite, both have many overlapping features, but they differ in the design of their workspaces and workflow.

Adobe Premiere Pro is a video editing program — designed to organize and arrange audio and video clips onto several timelines. It also has some easy-to-use color-correction tools. Adobe After Effects is a video compositing program — designed to combine multiple elements into individual images within a video. It also has some powerful video-oriented special effects tools.

Sometimes, a project may require a designer to do both video editing and video compositing. If that’s the case, determine which tool you’ll need to use first. Either way, it’s important to have a firm grasp of your project scope to efficiently take full advantage of both Premiere Pro and After Effects.

Knowledge is Power

Many designers find it confusing to decide between Adobe programs because they understand some of the capabilities of each program – but they don’t know enough to take full advantage of each program’s true strengths. Additionally, using the right application can make it easier for anyone else who will need to use your files in their native format later (e.g., a magazine publisher, video broadcaster, etc.). Don’t be afraid to admit what you don’t know and pursue opportunities to learn more. Advanced education can make you more aware not only of any given application’s capabilities but also of its limitations.

Ultimately, the right choice will make it easier for you to do the work at hand and for others to use your files later while streamlining workflow and helping you make the best use of your time.


At Relish Marketing, our fusion of creative and strategy unlocks your brand and propels it forward. Savor your brand. View our client work. Work with us! Contact here.

How To Make a GIF

Look anywhere online and you’ll see a practical explosion of animated GIF (Graphic Interchange Format) files. These cute little moving pictures are popular because they add quick humor and spunk to blog posts, emails, messages – really any digital platform. Best of all, they are easy to create.

Let me walk you through the process of making a stop-motion-style GIF – in this case, an animated banana peel.

1. First things first: you will need to take some photos! In order to keep your background consistent and still, mount your camera on a tripod in an area where the lighting is unlikely to change. Between each photo you take, move your subject slightly until it has progressed through some kind of brief movement or story. If the photos were strung together in a flip book, a fluid motion would be visible. Below, you can see my workspace where I took 15 photos to progressively move a banana peel across the frame.

camera setup


2. Next, import your photos into Photoshop. Place each photo on top of the last so that the bottom layer is the first frame, and the top layer is the last. Then, click on the "Timeline" view in the Window menu.

Photoshop timeline


3. In the timeline panel that appears below your composition, a button will either read, "Create Frame Animation" or "Create Video Timeline." Use the dropdown menu to the right to select “Create Frame Animation.” Then click that button.

Photoshop create frame animation


4. Now, locate the hamburger menu to the top right of the Timeline panel and click it to make a drop down menu appear.

Photoshop timeline hamburger menu

Make sure the menu has a checkmark beside "Create New Layer for Each New Frame" and not beside "New Layers Visible in All Frames." Then, click "Make Frames From Layers."

Photoshop make frames from layers


5. When a series of frames appear in your Timeline, click the arrow beside the word "Once" on the bottom left of your Timeline panel. Change "Once" to "Forever" in order to make your GIF loop infinitely.

Photoshop loop forever


6. Now, you will need to select the length of time each frame should play by clicking the dropdown to the right of "0 sec." on each frame. If you want all frames to play for the same length, hold down the shift key then click each frame to select all. When you change the speed on one dropdown, all the frames will all play at that speed. You can view the animation by clicking play on your Timeline. I left my animation at the default because I want it to move quickly, but feel free to play around until you’re pleased with the animation speed of your frames.

Photoshop frame length


7. Time to export!

Before attempting to save your animation, Click Image/Image Size, then adjust the dimensions to make sure that your image is reasonably sized. Since this is a digital file, your resolution does not need to be more than 72 ppi, and and your height and width dimensions should both be under 1000px. Anything much bigger may make for a much longer and unnecessary exporting process.

Photoshop resize


8. Click File/Export/Save for Web (Legacy)...

Photoshop Save for Web

A window will appear, where you must select GIF as the file type. Click Save, name your masterpiece and select the location where you wish to store your GIF animation file.

Photoshop GIF export


There you have it! Place your GIF into emails, webpages and any other digital media for a rad visual enhancement, sure to sweeten your content.



At Relish Marketing, our fusion of creative and strategy unlocks your brand and propels it forward.
Savor your brand. View our client work. Work with us! Contact here.