A collaboration to savour

In a similar way to a wine requiring more than just grapes to become something Quaff-worthy, Q-wine's rebrand and digital transformation needed the expert skills of The Cohorts and Unsworth Shepherd to create something of uniQue Quality.

Considered by Unsworth Shepherd to be a "long-established trusted digital partner", The Cohorts often collaborate with our long-standing creative partners on projects – and we engage with each other regularly, each of us bringing clients to the table to share skills.

Unsworth Shepherd approached us with a challenge to reverse deliver a digital presence with a newly realised brand for Q Wines on a limited budget.

Sometimes creative paths don't take the most direct approach; in this case, it required working backwards to take Q Wines brand forwards.

E-commerce Website
We completely understand what each other's doing at any given point in time on a project, which means that there's a really blurry line between when the design finishes and the digital design starts.
John Shepherd
Unsworth Shepherd - Creative Director

Jules Matthew's half of the two Jules of Q Wines (the other is owner Jules Stephan) is the first to admit they have gone about things back to front. "We planted the grapes and made the wine, then thought we don't have a brand or the story". After a great experience with Unsworth Shepherd developing a billboard campaign cemented in a great brand idea – Jules and Jules saw the possibilities of rolling the creative across all their brand assets.

The winemakers' most significant challenge was being a predominantly premise-based supplier (selling through restaurants). But with the fallout from COVID, a cost-of-living crisis and no cellar door at the vineyard, Jules needed a way to refresh the website to give the brand more substance and increase online sales to subsidise the ongoing challenges.

John worked on optimising the look, tone of voice and customer experience - developing the brand, which The Cohorts then took and applied to a digital strategy and the new website.

With strict budget constraints, The Cohorts applied the new design to the existing Squarespace website, but to deliver a whole new brand experience, it became apparent that a significant upgrade was required. The site was taken offline for two days to rebuild from scratch, reinvented to reflect the new brand language and design that Unsworth Shepherd created. Once the site was updated and the historical data migrated across, customers could fully experience the new Q wines brand. We worked through everything with the client, negotiating and compromising over these two days to ensure once it went live, everything looked perfect.

The new website is beautifully simple, allowing clients to focus on more pressing tasks rather than worry about daily maintenance. The site and the platform have made it the most productive and efficient way for Q Wines to update products and manage the purchasing and check-out process. The Cohorts also developed the customer journey email automation before the site was rebuilt, ensuring customers would receive emails notifying them of new vintages and specials, all packaged up in the new brand look and feel, to deliver a seamless brand experience on the site and beyond.

Jules had a great experience working with John and Reuben, finding them very easy to work with. "Reuben was really good at explaining it to someone who didn't understand any of it - in a very clear way".

John believes the success of the collaboration comes down to having complementary skills while speaking a common language – Logic.

Another element of the successful working relationship was ensuring there were specific boundaries as to who was working on what and being pragmatic about decisions.

It's simple, it's efficient, it's concise. It really couldn't be more than it is without having a lot more creative elements and bigger budgets. It represents the best it can be with what we've got to play with.
Jules Matthews
Q Wines

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