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239 SW 41st Street
Renton, WA

(206) 728-8181

Trio Group is a full-service marketing communications agency that assists its clients in successfully bringing their unique voices to the marketplace. 

Our Work

The Zoo Society

Megan Quint

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BACKGROUND

In 2001, Trio principal Jeff Quint reached out to the Zoo Society to offer our help in improving their development efforts. Based on the marketing materials he had received as a Tacoma resident, Jeff felt that there was an opportunity for the organization to better communicate the benefits of Zoo Society membership. 

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BRIEF

The original project called for Trio to increase Zoo Society membership and support further membership development efforts both internal and external. However, the development-focused project quickly expanded to include a wide array of creative, marketing strategy, and operational efficiency tasks.

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PROCESS

The Zoo Society needed to communicate the value and benefits of membership, rather than simply listing its features. Our goal was to influence a shift in how the public thought about the Zoo Society, as well as how the Zoo Society thought about itself. After an exhaustive audit of internal- and external-facing materials, Jeff and the Trio team provided input on how to improve the member acquisition process (including a completely revamped membership renewal system), as well as how the Zoo Society interacted with, and rewarded, its existing members.

The shift to a value-based messaging strategy was accompanied by a similar shift in visual elements. Trio redesigned the Zoo Society’s membership materials from the ground up with a simpler, more colorful style, and redrafted outbound language to be more current and engaging. 

Trio spearheaded a completely new membership renewal process- instead of mailing new membership cards to all members annually, we developed a heavyweight plastic card and matching letter carrier to be sent only to new members. This reusable card offered significant cost savings over the lifetime of a family’s membership, as well as saving Zoo Society manpower by reducing their number of outbound mailings. 

The project's success was based on two key metrics: cost savings and membership enrollment/renewal.

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DELIVERABLES

Membership program strategy
Style guide and design assets
Marketing collateral
Print materials using recycled paper
Direct mail services

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OUTCOME

The updated membership renewal process resulted in an approximate savings of over $103,000 plus staff labor through the course of a typical 10-year membership cycle. Overall membership enrollment and renewal numbers remained constant throughout, despite over 40% of the park's exhibits being closed for major renovation.

Greater Metro Parks Foundation

Megan Quint

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With strategic and creative guidance from Trio Group, the Greater Metro Parks Foundation transitioned from a volunteer organization to a successful nonprofit capable of raising significant capital for local parks.

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BACKGROUND

Greater Metro Parks Foundation (GMPF) is a nonprofit organization that builds community support to enhance parks and recreation programs and capital projects for Tacoma neighborhoods.

A partner organization to Metro Parks Tacoma since 1991, the Greater Metro Parks Foundation nurtures community engagement, volunteerism, and philanthropy. 

 

BRIEF

When Trio principal Jeff Quint brought our team’s expertise to support GMPF, the organization was primarily focused on developing volunteer manpower for Metro Parks Tacoma. While this had been sufficient in the past, GMPF set its sights on becoming an organization capable of significant capital fundraising and community engagement. 

 

PROCESS

Jeff and the Trio team worked extensively and intimately with GMPF staff and board of directors to outline a strategy that would develop the nonprofit as a successful fundraising organization, with special focus on advocacy as an integral part of that process. We saw an opportunity for GMPF to tell the story of how greater parks create greater communities.

The process began with a new identity for the organization- a fresh logo and color palette was selected through an intensive brand discovery process with the board of directors at the helm. The result is an optimistic green emblem that communicates growth and development while nodding to the familiar wave of Metro Parks Tacoma’s own brand.

The rebranding included an overhaul of outbound communications, design materials, and even sub-branded fundraising events in anticipation of GMPF’s first large-scale capital campaign to renovate Wright and McCarver parks, the Zina Linnik Project.

Evaluating the success of the rebranding, marketing strategy, and fundraising efforts was based on a wide range of factors including:

  • Capital funds raised for the Zina Linnik Project

  • Event registration and attendance

  • Annual and recurring donations

 

DELIVERABLES

Brand identity, style guide, and design assets
Marketing and outreach communications
Nonprofit advocacy and development consulting
Print materials using recycled paper

 

OUTCOME

Despite the poor economic conditions at the time, GMPF fully funded the $3.3M Zina Linnik Project between 2007-2010. Additionally, GMPF created a new model for community involvement “from the ground up,” which involved educators, community stakeholders, park district leadership, and the people who benefited most from the project- the kids themselves. 

 

Additional Work

We consider our ongoing support of GMPF and its efforts to "support healthy spaces to play, learn, and grow" one of our most valued and rewarding experiences. To date, we've completed many additional projects for GMPF including:

  • Complete website redesign and content strategy

  • Branding and marketing collateral for GMPF's annual Because Parks Matter Luncheon

  • Video production

  • Annual report design and publishing

  • Outreach materials for the Eastside Community Center fundraising project

 

Experience Music Project

Megan Quint

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BACKGROUND

 Trio redesigned and published Imprint, the member publication of EMP|SFM, within a two week deadline.

Trio redesigned and published Imprint, the member publication of EMP|SFM, within a two week deadline.

Our first project with the Experience Music Project (EMP) was a rush project with a two-week deadline. The task was to completely rebuild the museum’s member publication to better reflect the diversity and vibrance of EMP’s exhibits. We renamed, rebranded, redesigned, and published a newly-christened Imprint magazine in just 10 days.

Following hot on the heels of our work on Imprint, EMP hired Trio to develop an integrated campaign for their upcoming The Music Behind the Magic exhibition of Disney music from 1928 to today. Concurrently, we were invited to consult with EMP on their merger with the Science Fiction Museum (SFM) and strategize how to improve their membership roster and overall museum development.

 Updated membership materials for the newly merged Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum.

Updated membership materials for the newly merged Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum.

PROCESS

We began with an extensive historical review of the museum from a visual and visitor standpoint, with a comparison of how the museum’s visitors had changed since opening.

We delved into visitor and membership data to determine trending demographics; the primary insight was that the museum was overwhelmingly frequented by tourists, while the percentage of visitors from the Seattle metro area were in decline.

Our goal was to broaden the appeal of the museum to local visitors and reposition EMP as a cornerstone of the Seattle music scene.

 Iconic imagery melded together to created an instantly recognizable campaign graphic for the  Music behind the Magic  exhibit of Disney memorabilia.

Iconic imagery melded together to created an instantly recognizable campaign graphic for the Music behind the Magic exhibit of Disney memorabilia.

The Disney campaign provided the ideal opportunity to sell EMP as a local attraction. Coupling the unique style of Frank Gehry’s architecture with the iconic Mickey Mouse ears, we created an instantly recognizable symbol that was spread across Seattle as part of one of EMP’s largest campaigns to date.

Trio designed and executed all supporting materials for the campaign, from internal graphics and signage, to billboards, bus wrap graphics, outbound marketing pieces and even a redesigned visitor services booth.

Our work with EMP|SFM continued with notable exhibits Out of this World and American Sabor. Trio provided creative design and print execution services for everything from identity design and museum signage to visitor guides and marketing materials.

In addition to the standard performance indicators of membership and ticket sales numbers, our long-term goal was to develop a marketing department in-house for the museum and return control of creative to that group. In the meantime, our creative director stepped in as the museum’s interim marketing director.

 
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DELIVERABLES

Imprint Magazine branding, design, templates, and publication
Integrated marketing campaigns: The Music behind the Magic, Out of this World, American Sabor

Membership and development consulting

Media buying

Print production

Direct mail

 

OUTCOME

The museum was successful in attracting new local visitors by changing their admission and membership fee structure and combining EMP and SFM together. At the time of its completion, The Music behind the Magic was EMP’s most successful exhibit to date. Membership had nearly doubled from approximately 3,000 to over 5,000 when we returned marketing operations to the museum’s in-house creative team and EMP|SFM was well on its way to becoming a center of music and culture in Seattle and the Puget Sound.

Construction Center of Excellence

Megan Quint

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Using cutting-edge augmented reality, Trio NAE helped the Construction Center of Excellence engage with a new generation of tech-savvy students.

BRIEF

Redesign the Construction Center of Excellence’s (CCE) Program & Resource Guide to appeal to the latest generation of students.

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PROCESS

Building on a previous design project and CCE’s updated website, Trio crafted an edgier, more sophisticated layout and design for the publication, including implementation of a structured grid system, unified typography, and helpful callouts in the Center’s signature orange and green.

As we worked on shaping the handbook’s content, we saw an opportunity to introduce a cutting-edge technology that would help CCE attract and engage their target audience: device-savvy millennials.

Utilizing augmented reality (AR) was much more than the “cool” factor that the 18-25 year-old group seeks through technology. AR provided a unique opportunity to present web and video content directly to users as they browsed the handbook. It enabled a simple print publication to extend into the digital sphere while offering an engaging interactive experience.

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DELIVERABLES

Augmented reality development

Content strategy

Graphic design

Copy writing and revision

Print production

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OUTCOME

At a major career fair in September 2013, student visitors to the CCE booth were three times higher than the previous year: 500 students interacted with CCE versus 150 in 2012.

Of the students who visited the booth, 100% downloaded the AR app to interface with the resource handbook- taking a physical copy of the handbook with them, as well as providing CCE an opportunity to continue to reach them via the downloaded AR app.

All other colleges present showed an interest in the technology and admitted that it was a clear differentiator to attracting students’ interest in CCE’s programs.

Utility Discount Program

Megan Quint

BACKGROUND

Seattle City Light offers one of the most generous rate discount programs in the nation to income-qualified customers. The Utility Discount Program (UDP) is a major priority of the Seattle City Council and City Light leadership.

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BRIEF

Support Seattle City Light’s 2013 goal of 15,000 rate payers enrolled in the Utility Discount Program through a targeted messaging and outreach program. Develop a cohesive brand identity for the program to be implemented throughout all materials.

Tacoma Open

Megan Quint

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Brief

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Develop a new golf event structure for Metro Parks Tacoma that would allow for both golf and community-focused events. Support this effort through a targeted messaging and outreach program with a cohesive brand identity to be implemented throughout all materials.

Background

Metro Parks Tacoma (MPT) is a regional park district that encompasses the city of Tacoma and several Pierce County attractions such as Northwest Trek.  Meadow Park Golf Course has been owned and operated by MPT since 1962 and has always strived to be open and accessible to all regardless of age, gender or ethnicity.  With the Professional Golfers Association (PGA) annual U.S. Open coming to nearby Chambers Bay in University Place, the park district thought it would be an excellent opportunity to feature Meadow Park Golf Course and welcome the general public to a series of events during the U.S. Open week.

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Process

Our first step was to review the branding guidelines for Metro Parks Tacoma and extensively research community golf programs, from the PGA Tour to local tournaments.  We worked with key staff to identify the target audiences, and discussed the channels best suited to reaching each segment. 

The resulting strategy called for developing a name/logo and message that would allow enough leeway for a wide range of community events focused on the game of golf and the value of the parks system.  Our vision was to create a brand that would appeal to both local amateurs as well as professional PGA Tour golfers. 

We designed a visual identity for the Tacoma Open along with an accompanying style guide to provide direction for outbound communications. Next we developed a broad outreach campaign delivered through a wide variety of channels including print, web, social media and traditional media.  We also worked with key stakeholders to connect personally with several of the local PGA Tour professionals that call the South Puget Sound home. 

Working with Meadow Park Golf Course staff, we developed a series of events: a traditional ‘Pro-Am’ style tournament to begin in 2014 and run annually, as well as a golf ‘skins-game’ that will feature four of the local area PGA Tour professionals to take place during the week of the U.S. Open in June of 2015.  Lastly we developed a series of ‘viewing parties’ to take place all during the actual U.S. Open golf tournament that will be available to the general public.  We were asked by the Meadow Park Golf Course Superintendent to join the committee on a permanent basis to provide ongoing strategy and support.

Evaluating the success of this ongoing campaign is based on an array of metrics including:

  • Number of registrants to each event – with the immediate goal of filling the 120 openings at the first ‘Pro-Am’ tournament in September 2014, including two PGA Tour professionals

  • Sponsorship development and philanthropic donations received in support of the golf tournament

  • Website visitors, application downloads, and time-on-site

  • Channel partner involvement and application distribution

  • Media involvement both before and after the events

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Deliverables

Campaign identity

Style guide and design assets

Internal communications campaign

Marketing collateral

Print materials and digital media assets

Public relations management

Outcome

The inaugural Tacoma Open ‘Pro-Am’ had over 120 golfers in attendance, comprised of both professionals and amateurs.  The event created ‘buzz’ and awareness for next year’s events during the U.S. Open, and four of the local PGA Professionals (Michael and Andrew Putnam, Andres Gonzales and Troy Kelly) formalized their commitment to participate in the 2015 Skins Game. 

Furthermore, PGA Professional Michael Putnam agreed to be the official host and spokesperson in support of the Tacoma Open, and he was able to connect with Sports Radio KJR 950AM for an interview with Jason Puckett.  Other media included an appearance on local TV program Tacoma Cityline by Meadow Park Golf Course Superintendent Chris Goodman and Trio NAE principal Jeff Quint, as well as articles and paid advertising in both the Tacoma News Tribune and Cascade Golfer magazine. 

Most importantly, the inaugural Tacoma Open laid the groundwork for a significant expansion of the event in coming years and burnished support for Metro Parks Tacoma to work with Pierce County to position Metro Parks Tacoma as a U.S. Open community partner during the U.S. Open in 2015.

Simply Thai

Megan Quint

Simply Thai is a family-owned Thai restaurant located near Southcenter Mall in Tukwila, Washington. Founded by Rick and Nita Moore, the restaurant serves Southeast Asian food with influences from Thailand and the Moore’s native Laos.

Brief

Simply Thai’s website and brand was woefully outdated. We were tasked with rebuilding the website from the ground up, expanding the company’s digital brand experience with photography of its delicious food, and implementing a consistent identity across all digital channels.

Process

We began by aligning the site’s pages and information to visitor intent: finding and validating a great restaurant. This brought location and menu information to the forefront, which were buried on the legacy site.

 Simply Thai's legacy website was a fixed-width site that didn't speak to the restaurant's outstanding quality food.

Simply Thai's legacy website was a fixed-width site that didn't speak to the restaurant's outstanding quality food.

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We captured the vibrancy and freshness of Simply Thai’s food during an on-site photo shoot with dishes fresh from the kitchen. The best part of the shoot was sitting down afterwards to enjoy each plate of food with Rick himself. Armed with bright, mouth-watering photography, the site came to life with succinct text which allowed the visuals to carry the story. 

Additionally, we redesigned and printed Simply Thai’s dine-in and take-out menus to match the updated brand identity.

Deliverables

  • Responsive website design and development

  • Content strategy

  • Graphic design

  • Art production

  • Editorial services

  • Brand experience strategy

Victory Solutions

Megan Quint

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BRIEF 

Relaunch Victory Solutions’ website to more accurately reflect the young company’s growth. 

PROCESS 

After being selected for a highly coveted mentor-protege relationship with The Boeing Company, Victory Solutions found its website to be woefully out of sync with their expanded capabilities and expertise. The first task was to develop a content strategy for the new site. Our goal was to help Victory Solutions uncover the best narrative to describe their business. Complicating this process was the highly technical and often confidential nature of their work with multiple federal agencies. Through an iterative process, we distilled Victory Solutions’ core brand strengths into language that strikes the middle ground between technical and simplified. 

Armed with fresh content and a streamlined information architecture, the next step brought organization to the site’s layout and navigation. We built the site on Squarespace, a hosted content management system, to ensure the company’s team could keep the site updated on their own. A crisp, image-forward design positions the keystones of their portfolio front-and-center on the home page, while generous white space keeps the text-heavy site from being overly cumbersome. 

In the process of designing the site, we clarified the Victory Solutions brand identity by developing typographic standards, unifying the color palette, and editing the website copy for a clear, unified voice. 

OUTCOME 

Although analytics data for the legacy site is not available, responses from Victory Solutions leadership and employees has been overwhelmingly positive. 

DELIVERABLES 

  • Responsive website design and development

  • Content strategy

  • Copy writing and editing

  • Brand identity design


The new site finally reflects how we see ourselves, and has inspired in our entire company a new confidence that ‘we have arrived’. It is far better than I could have imagined, and I am excited to utilize the site to continue building our business. Thank you Trio for helping us tell our story in a way that is dynamic, exciting, and professional.
— Kris McGuire, Victory Solutions CEO

Our Community Credit Union

Ricardo Ibarra

BACKGROUND

Simpson Credit Union had, since its inception as an employee owned financial institution, been synonymous with Simpson Timber Company – its namesake in the Shelton, WA area. Yet membership was dwindling due to several factors including the slow decline in Simpson Timber employment, an aging membership group, and marketplace perception that the credit union was not a primary financial institution.

 A blend of illustrative and photographic styles helped Our Community Credit Union stand out from competitors.

A blend of illustrative and photographic styles helped Our Community Credit Union stand out from competitors.

BRIEF

There was a clear need to refresh the brand identity of the credit union and reposition it effectively within the community.

 The new brand featured bright colors and an icon that represented the credit union's tagline of "People Helping People."

The new brand featured bright colors and an icon that represented the credit union's tagline of "People Helping People."

PROCESS

Our first step was to audit all the assets of the current brand and relative position of the credit union in the marketplace, including past and anticipated competition. Further, we interviewed senior management to gain a comprehensive understanding of overall credit union goals and strategies.

The resulting strategy called for a phased transition away from the Simpson name towards a new name, Our Community Credit Union (OCCU).  We developed a new logo that downplayed the Simpson name as well as created an iconic image to associate with the new name.  We seeded the new iconic image in every aspect of community-facing communications, including the interior design of the credit union’s branches.

We completely overhauled all print communications material starting with an announcement to existing membership detailing the upcoming changes and member benefits. We shifted the brandto an illustrative style to differentiate OCCU from other competitors in the market. The new illustrative style was fun and inviting and assisted our efforts to define and position the logo image as a central theme to “community as family”.

 The new OCCU mortgage and financial services centers received a sub-brand that closely aligned each facility to its parent organization.

The new OCCU mortgage and financial services centers received a sub-brand that closely aligned each facility to its parent organization.

 OCCU even purchased an inflatable parade float to support the brand's rollout.

OCCU even purchased an inflatable parade float to support the brand's rollout.

DELIVERABLES

  • New logo with iconic standalone image
  • Style guide and design assets
  • Internal/external communications campaign
  • Marketing strategy and collateral
  • Print materials design and production
  • Interior design – including custom wallpaper behind teller services in each branch
  • Media strategy including radio and billboard deployment

 
OCCU’s rebranding was adopted in just six months due to its alignment with the community’s desire to see the credit union grow into a full-service financial institution.
— Jeff Quint, Trio Group
 

OUTCOME

The rebranding and marketing campaign was successful in shifting the community's perception of the credit union to that of a primary financial institution. The new brand established OCCU as a local and trusted financial advisor with intimate knowledge of the community, as evidenced by a rapid, six-month shift in community adoption of the new name.

Additionally, the credit union doubled its assets through an expansion of services to include mortgage that positioned the credit union as a “primary”  financial services provider for the marketplace. The rebranding also affected a shift in the overall membership demographic to a younger, more affluent group.