Tag Archives: Daake

Daake

May 15, 2018 by
Photography by Jeremy Wieczorek

This sponsored content was printed in the June/July 2018 edition of B2B. To view, click here: https://issuu.com/omahapublications/docs/bb0718_flipbook/28

Greg Daake launched a successful career as a graphic designer and an art director right out of college, but he was disappointed with the disconnect he found between creative teams and clients.  

“I call it ‘mushroom management’; [the creative team is] kept in the dark and fed fertilizer,” he says. “I needed to get close to the problem…I want to be with the people—it’s not about computers and fonts and colors, it’s about human beings—and if there’s any distance between [you and] that, your work suffers.”

In 2001, he founded his namesake company out of a spare bedroom. Seventeen years later, DAAKE the company has grown to a team of 10, providing branding and creative services to clients that include Children’s Hospital & Medical Center, First National Bank, Iowa Western, OrthoNebraska, Kidwell, Lincoln Financial Group, DMSI and Timpte.

“We like that diversity. It’s not about industry for us, it’s about human beings,” says Daake, who serves as creative director and principal. “It’s still problem-solving, it’s still creating compelling thoughts, images, and expressions. And that translates across virtually any industry.” 

The company’s niche is branding, which Daake likens to metamorphosis.

“It’s really the full spectrum of brand design and brand thinking but the common element is that there’s some sort of pivotal moment, complex challenge, some sort of transformation,” he explains. “We’re on a mission here to help brands transform themselves.”

Director of Project Management Susan Linde says the team at DAAKE genuinely cares about not just the success of the clients, but about the people within those organizations. 

“We will ask them tough questions to get to the root of their problem, and then we will take it a step further to ask ‘What if?’ to develop new solutions that bring results,” she says. “Throughout the relationship, we will take chances and handle each and every detail, so they don’t have to.”

Senior Design Director Steven Valish agrees that what distinguishes DAAKE is deep connections to clients.

“There are a lot of great agencies in Omaha and throughout the Midwest that execute great creative. I feel strongly that DAAKE is part of that class, but creative aside, we care,” he says. “We care about our clients as best friends—think of the degree of effort and devotion you dedicate to your closest relationships.”

DAAKE’s team must be able to integrate a variety of channels, from print to broadcast social media, to meet the needs of clients around the country. But it all goes back to helping brands transition to the “what could be.” 

“In 17 years of this, branding is just our sweet spot, it’s our value intersection. We get to do what’s very meaningful and fulfilling to us, and when the client goes, ‘We couldn’t have done it without you’…After months of listening and talking and focus groups, it’s great to bring back this distillation of who they already are,” Daake says. “It’s around those rebranding moments: guiding them to the right idea, clarifying what they’re really saying and creating these powerful, exciting moments for their brand.” 

17002 Marcy St., Suite No. 10
Omaha, NE 68118
402.933.2959
daake.com

Passion Project

February 26, 2015 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

When Greg Daake returned from a conference in Minneapolis where he heard a panel present their experience with a 24-hour total rebrand, he knew he wanted to try it. Daake, founder and creative director of the Omaha rebranding company of the same name, wondered how would his 10-person team respond? A complete rebrand usually takes anywhere from three to eight months. Was it even possible? Would anyone else want to attempt it? Was he crazy?

“Everyone was all in,” Daake says, grinning.

20150129_bs_8777

Once the seed was planted, things started falling into place. This was going to be a total volunteer effort, so Daake wanted to choose a nonprofit that was in need of a rebrand, but maybe couldn’t afford the price tag. Through a series of fortuitous circumstances, Omaha’s Montessori Co-op School fell in their lap.

Once the school was on board, they had to do a little homework of their own ahead of time so the creative team could hone in on Montessori’s vision and understand their mission. “We had submitted some questions to orient us to who they are and what they were,” Daake explains. “We also had them fill out a 2-3 hour questionnaire that kicks out a profile. So when we began the real work, we knew who they were and the lens they see the world through,” Daake says.

After that initial fact-finding, they were on the clock. On rebrand day, representatives from the school were brought in at 8 a.m. and Daake’s team presented their findings. After that first face-to-face, the team worked all morning on creating a tagline and identity. After another short meeting at noon, Daake’s team brainstormed all afternoon and brought the school’s representatives back at 5 p.m.

“At our 5 o’clock presentation, we said, ‘Here’s what we’re thinking for a tagline, and identity, the brochure and the webpage.’ So at 6 p.m. that night, we were off and running.” They closed their doors. They locked themselves in. They worked all night long and didn’t sleep. “It was intense,” Daake says.

After a full day of conceptualizing, the night was spent on the execution. Another piece of homework that sped the process along was shooting photography and film at the school for a video. Daake’s team built the entire website overnight. “Our web designer was buried in empty Red Bull cans,” Daake laughs. “We were all exhausted.”

At 8 a.m. the next morning, representatives from Montessori Co-op returned for the unveiling. “They were crying. We were crying. It was so fulfilling and amazing,” Daake says, emotion welling in his voice. “We were fueled by the clock, but also by their appreciation. They were so moved by it. I get misty thinking about how fun and cool it was just to see their reaction. Wow,” Daake says, shaking his head.

Daake says that beyond what they did for their clients, it was great for his team.

“To see everyone pitching in, everyone sacrificing. There is something about 4 a.m. when you’re riding the caffeine wave, when inhibitions are gone and you really get to know someone. It really grew the team.”

When asked if he would do it again, he answers with an emphatic, “Yes! It was one of the best things I’ve ever done in my life.”