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SA Away Day 2014

After everyone’s hard work, and a year of amazing success and unprecedented growth, we figured it was time for a good ole’ fashioned away day.  So, we packed our bags, hopped on a bus, and went wild.

Suffice to say we had an excellent time, and set ourselves a raft of new goals and plans for the year to come.  It’s true, two heads really are better than one, and when you put the whole team together and talk about improving our services for clients, the results are infinitely positive.





Run with us!


scarlettabbott are proud to be the main sponsor of the Clifton Village Coast to Coast Run in support of Martin House Children’s Hospice.

The run, starting in Whitehaven at 5pm on Friday 20th June, will cover a gruelling 138 mile circuit, reaching altitudes of over 2000ft., and will be undertaken by just 7 individual athletes working as a team and completed within 24hours.

We hope that you will join us in supporting this wonderful charity by donating to the Clifton Village Coast to Coast Run:

Twitter: @CliftonC2C




Are your Gizmos turning into Gremlins this Halloween?

Blog teaser image_Gremlins


For our latest mash-up of IC best practice and classic movies, we’ve taken a look at seven steps to getting social platforms off the ground, while keeping Gremlins at bay.

In the film Gremlins, when a Mogwai wasn’t handled with the proper care, the Gremlins caused mayhem.

We’re here to make sure your people use their own gizmos correctly and your social media channels remain free of gremlins.

With the increasing reality of a future where more colleagues bring their own devices to use at work, it’s good practice now to start embracing social media as a key channel for your internal communications.

It seems as though everyone is looking for the latest ways to get colleagues talking to each other on social media platforms. It’s important to keep people interested beyond the initial excitement of a new launch event.

Just take a second to think of the lazy accounts we’ve all registered on sites such as Bebo and Friends Reunited. If we logged on to them today, it would be like shouting in an empty room.

We took our inspiration from a recent project where we helped launch a global social platform channel with the UK colleagues of a major professional services company. This got us thinking about why people use social media, what they get out of it and what benefits can be gained from using it in the workplace for both colleagues and the bottom line.

Click here to download your free infographic and find out more.

Feel free to add your comments below or get in touch using your own gizmos on,, or email



We love hearing your feedback!

One of our lovely readers of Northern contacted us to tell us what they thought of the mag:
“I don’t normally do this sort of thing – too many other things to do! – but I just wanted to say how brilliant ‘Northern’ is.  I used to be a magazine editor myself for a large bank and I wish that what we used to produce had been half as good as this!  The content is genuinely informative, the design is fantastic and the writing witty and punchy.  That doesn’t often happen in corporate publishing.
Keep up the good work”What do you think about Northern magazine? Do let us know – we always love to hear what you think!



Meet Designer of the Year


We were so excited when Rich was shortlisted for the IOIC Best Designer award and guess what? He only went on to win it! Everyone at Scarlettabbott are all really proud to have the best designer in internal communications in the team.

Lets hear from the man himself:

Tell us about the award Rich?
The ICON awards were right at the end of the evening so we’d had a long time to wait, but when they called my name it was definitely worth it! It was a great moment and it’s still just sinking in now really. We celebrated in style on the night though and I’ve still got the husky voice to show for it. We also received an Award of Excellence for Best Agency, so a good night was had by all.

What would have stood out for the judges about you?
I guess my style is eclectic and fresh. The variety of projects I’ve worked on this year is immense. Illustrative journey maps or ‘big pictures’, print collateral, online portals and intranets, magazines, infographics, animation and ambient media. I guess it presents a really interesting body of work.

What have you been working on recently?
I’ve been creating lots of big pictures. They’re such an innovative way to engage large numbers of employees in really rich conversations about their business and the role they play in future success. They’re a great opportunity to flex my illustrative muscles, as the style of each big picture is completely bespoke and in line with each different brand. A picture really does tell a 1,000 words and making a complex strategy come to life on a page stretches my business brain as well as my creativity.

Tell us what you love about your job?
I’ve always enjoyed what I do but it’s not always easy; making something beautifully simple is difficult. I love the creative journey you go on with client. It starts with understanding what their objective is – what do they need an employee to do or do differently as a result of the communication I’m designing? What is important to the individual receiving the message? How can we make our communication really stand out, resonate, and inspire them to act a result?

What’s your design mantra?
Understand your audience. Keep your client’s objective front of mind. Then create something intelligent, understandable and different – something that can’t be ignored.

Good luck Rich on following in the footsteps of our Head Creative Craig Bentley who took home the IOIC Best Designer gong in 2010! You’re already a star to us!
See more of Rich’s work here.

If you want to get your hands on a free copy of the IC Force (created by the fabulous Rich), click here to download.

Want to discuss IC or any of the projects Rich has been working on recently? Please call Jeremy on 01904 731188 or email




Shhhhhh… don’t mention the P-WORD

Shhh...Don't mention the P-WORD

What is it about the P-WORD that really turns people off? People really don’t like it. But it’s not without trying. For years, employers, the government and industry experts have been telling us, ‘save now’, ‘free money’, ‘we won’t be able to fund you’. Yet never has a word fallen on so many deaf ears. People still don’t save enough, still find it complicated and still think it is too far in the future. Auto-enrolment is a massive step forward and one way the government is tackling the P-WORD, and we think that’s great.

But will employers make the most of this huge investment? Will they use this opportunity to take pensions communications and turn it into an employee engagement opportunity?

Here are our top tips for how to drive employer value from your auto-enrolment communication:

  • Simplify complex content – don’t dumb important content down but keep messages clear, jargon-free and bust through complex technical speak
  • Involve your people – create a test bed of employees who can challenge your communication approach and be advocates on the ground
  • Leverage your wider employee deal – talking about your pension in the context of the overall employee deal is much more powerful than on its own
  • Educate as well as inform – give people access to tools, help and guidance that help them take action now by saving on every day expenses
  • Enable and empower employees to calculate their benefits – help people to come to their own conclusions about their employee benefits by giving them interactive tools and benefits modellers
  • Mix the media – a booklet or intranet in isolation won’t achieve your aims. Talk to employees through a range of channels, appealing to the different needs and learning styles of your audience
  • Keep it alive throughout the year – this can’t be a one-hit wonder. Attitudes to personal finance change every day so plan regular intervals to communicate to your people.

If you’re interested in finding out more about how we’ve been helping organisations tackle the P-WORD, get in touch with or call 07734 386092.



Are you experienced?

dumb ways to die

We’re loving this work and thought we’d share it with you…



Six short fellas: an editorial mantra for IC?

How does Nobel Prize winning, elephant-loving author Rudyard Kipling, help us write fab content for our client magazines and newspapers?

We’ll tell you how. Fancy a poem?

Kipling wrote:

“I keep six honest serving-men

(They taught me all I knew);

Their names are WHAT and WHY and HOW

And WHEN and WHERE and WHO.”

Good eh? Let’s elaborate.

These six little words are central to writing engaging articles, and super-important when it comes to getting a message across and telling a story.

Our journalists and writers try to get WHAT and WHO across in the intro. What it’s all about, the message, the story? What’s special about this piece and what will make people want to read on? Who’s involved, how they got involved, the team they’re part of and their role within the company?

The nitty-gritty comes in the body of the copy. We’ve got the readers’ attention, now we give them what they want, the WHEN, the WHERE, the WHY, when it happened and why the date is significant, where the action took place and why it’s relevant to the story. Finally, make clear why it’s here – what’s the call to action in this article and what should colleagues do as a result?

Next comes the HOW – how it happened, the challenges and processes involved, final thoughts from colleagues on impact/solutions/effect/outcomes and contact details.

We’re proud to say at scarlettabbott we produce fresh, unique, engaging and entertaining content for a wide range of diverse internal audiences, and by following the wise words of Kipling, and using our IC expertise, we make sure we hit-the-spot with them every time.



Changes Ahead? Use the IC Force to Guide You


These are tough times; businesses are facing rapid change on a scale like never before. But how effective are we at communicating change to our people? Unsurprisingly, communication is often at the centre of why change initiatives fail to fully achieve their objectives. So why is communication often the last function invited to the change programme party?

Here at scarlettabbott, we love a change communication challenge; we’re experts at developing impactful change communication strategies that really put employees first.

How do we do it? We equip internal communication teams, senior leaders and people managers to create meaning, focus and direction; higher levels of understanding, acceptance and engagement.

Easier said than done, we know! But we can help. Let us guide you in how to use the IC Force to communicate change in ten simple steps. Click here to download your free copy of ‘Using the IC Force for Change’.

If you’ve got a change challenge, we’d love to hear from you. Why not drop Hannah a line?



Five ways to bring your strategy to life


Being clear on what your company is about, where it’s heading and the role individuals play in it, is a sweet spot in employee engagement. Here are five tried and tested ways to help you bring your strategy to life:

  1. Create a compelling story – work with your top team to develop their narrative – where you’ve been, where you’re heading, the challenges you face and what you need to do to triumph.
  2. Equip your managers – provide the tools to enable them to have effective conversations with their teams. Support them with communication training.
  3. Share your story through interactive learning – enable your employees to come to their own conclusions about the business strategy, future course of action and the role they play in helping achieve that.
  4. Make the connections – everything you communicate should directly link to your business strategy. If it doesn’t, challenge, why are you doing it?
  5. Keep the conversation alive – share business performance updates and give people regular opportunities to discuss progress against your strategy.