Case Studies, Home Furnishings

Designed for designers

Rebranding the High Point Market.

When I was 17, one of my first jobs at an advertising agency was delivering magazines to showrooms for publishers at the High Point home furnishings market. I was born in High Point and my great grandfather had several businesses in the furniture capital. As a matter of fact, you can still see the home he built from the Market Square tower!

While I went on to work in agencies from Ohio to Florida, my roots (and family) were always in North Carolina. I eventually found my way back to this great state and started Crobar in 2004. Shortly after, we landed several home furnishings accounts. Over the years since, we have been transitioning our clients to a growing buying segment: interior designers. This was a big shift for companies — they were used to dealing in containers of products and with buyers wanting to know the turn rate on square footage. Interior designers are very different.

Crobar became very efficient (with the help of brilliant marketing directors) not only at launching products to traditional retailers, but also to the emerging market of interior designers. So, you can imagine our excitement (and especially given my history) at the opportunity to work with the High Point Market Authority to not only rebrand their market, but to market it to designers.

From our experience, we knew to “design for designers.” We knew to keep the communication clean and sophisticated. We decided to use black, white and gray hues with an accent we like to call a “passion” color.

“The High Point Market is the canvas upon which products are presented.” “Designers want few words.” “Buyers are visually exhausted and want clean communications.” “Be fashion-forward.” “Create FOMO.” “Show fun.”

These few phrases were used to help guide the communication and design. We knew we didn’t want the communication itself to get in the way. And there is a lot of things to communicate — dates, events, showrooms, travel, times, food, shuttles, tours, planning, entertainment, directions, neighborhoods and more. We were determined to only have one logo — the market itself — and any other needs would be line extensions.

Overall, the goal was to resist the urge to go back to old brand ways that have been embedded into the culture over the past 16 years and instead move the needle into a new and more fashion-forward direction. Our brave client walked lock step with us (of course there where some toes stepped on) into a brand new HPMKT.

The last challenge was to position the internal communications for the High Point Market Authority and its relevance to The High Point Market. We came up with a tag line that clears it up beautifully. On the collateral it says… WE MAKE MARKET HAPPEN.  And, they sure do, market after market. We are proud of the work we do together.

The result is a brand that matches the expectations of interior designers and buyers of home furnishings.

Leveraged Creative:
• Rebrand all graphics
• Redesigned the website
• Advertising campaign
• Signage
• Social media campaign
• Email marketing
• Creative direction
• Photography
• Videography

The High Point Market, held in High Point, North Carolina, is the largest home furnishings industry trade show in the world, with over 10 million square feet by roughly 2000 exhibitors throughout about 180 buildings. The market holds two major shows each year, one in April and another in October, running one week in the Fall, and two weeks in the Spring.

Todd Kinley

J. Todd Kinley

Founder | Executive Creative Director: Crobar Creative Leverage. Husband, Father, and Moose owner. Lover of art, photography, golf, and strategy. Follow me: