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MATTHEW ROBERTS Some Examples to Pique Your Interest

Thank you again for your interest. A selection of past work including projects which may have come up in conversation with you, or may be noteworthy with regards to future discussion. While on the surface the subject matter and scale may vary widely, closer inspection will reveal challenges and considerations that are common to many clients, project briefs and organizations regardless of industry. Although none of these visuals can effectively illustrate my approach to creative team facilitation and leadership, I hope these accompanying descriptions offer some insight into the thought process beyond the visuals and that the inventive solutions I and my teams have delivered hold their own amongst the sea of applications you’re now reviewing. The professional experience outlined in my resume, previously supplied, will give additional explanation as to my roles in these projects. Should you require any additional information, please let me know. I look forward to discussing these in the near future and in the mean time, please enjoy the read. Kind regards, Matthew Roberts

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BOMBAY SAPPHIRE Promotional Packaging

The Challenge An aging, shrinking gin consumer pool and strong competition from more established Japanese liquors such as shochu and umeshu saw Bombay Sapphire set their sights on a younger, female audience in an attempt to create the gin market of tomorrow. Unfortunately research showed this target audience’s lack of knowledge of how to consume gin, combined with the stigma of gin being an older generation’s drink, proved too great a barrier for most to invest the time and energy to overcome.

The Solution Visually distilling (pun intended) Bombay Sapphire down to its essence: translucent blue cut crystal, leveraging the brand’s existing kudos in the design world courtesy of its glass design competitions. A series of promotional packaging designs that transformed the bottle’s grandfatherly silhouette into anticipation building sculptural elements more akin to a beauty products or jewellery. The integrated carry hole and dimensions also ensured the product was on display all the way home. Inquisitive recipients were rewarded with concealed cocktail recipes and information to enable a party host to speak comfortably about the brand to friends. Introduced extensively at targeted Tokyo lifestyle and design events the repackaged product quickly proved a hit with women in their 20s and early 30s, and in doing so earning a second iteration of the packaging designs the following season.

TOKYO AMERICAN CLUB Promotional Video Production

event entry

The Challenge With the $150M redevelopment of their facilities the client was rightly proud of what they had created, but in a city like Tokyo, shiny and new isn’t the case for long and within a year interest had trailed off , revenue was on a downward trend and the organization needed something to head of a less than stellar near future.

event exhibtion


The Solution Research showed that what the organization needed was to bring focus back to its core – people and how they enjoyed the product. As even throughout the redevelopment when offerings were openly below par, business had not suffered as it was now. The backbone of this campaign was a series of online video’s showcasing the facility through human level interaction and personal experience. Securing household name, Dante Carver of Softbank fame, as the host dispelled a common stigma of the organization being for oldies or conservatives while offering an approachable, international face. The story of the numerous fitness, recreation, dining and amenities on offer were told through short, anecdotal interviews with families and people of various ages and backgrounds, illustrating that what you were really buying into was a community, something no direct competitors could offer.

GARRARD AND ASPREY Launch Event and Exhibition Production

event entry

The Challenge Garrard, one of the worlds most prestigious jewellery brands, needed to launch its Regal collection in Japan in a way that would immediately place it echelons above the brand’s more widely known Garrard and Asprey collaboration consumer collections and in doing so garner the attention of the press and more importantly, potential buyers of pieces of this calibre.

event exhibtion


The Solution A visit by Her Royal Majesty’s Crown Jeweller accompanying a one day exhibition to rival most permanent displays, multiple press events and an exclusive evening of entertainment for potential buyers including the opportunity to wear not-for-sale pieces on loan from the brands U.K. collections. Converting Daikanyama’s Ark Angel Chapel with visually arresting swathes of Garrard’s signature pink made the brand part of the elite suburb’s streetscape for 24 hours. A mysterious invite showing one of Garrard’s most expensive pieces and little explanation of what was in store, turning the event on its head by walking guests through a darkened hall of custom built show cases, jewellery lit only by the ethereal glow of a carpet of hundreds of pink light sticks and an address by the crown jeweler himself had grown women in tears of anticipation before reentering the exhibition. Needless to say, the Regal launch achieved just the kind of attention the brand had been hoping for.

SHU UEMURA COSMETICS Packaging Design and Visual Merchandising

The Challenge Shu Uemura needed product packaging and visual merchandising to represent their BTB 23 birthday global campaign that would appeal to a younger market in a variety of countries.

The Solution A spring themed visual language that could be translated across multiple package designs and in-store VM materials. As much of the product borrowed from existing ranges, the design was flexible enough to encompass a wide variety or geometry, sympathetic to rest of the range so as to not overshadow long term popular items yet robust enough to unify the selection on offer as a stand alone purchase during the campaign. Simple white stock with silver line work spoke a common estÊ vernacular, while the motifs depicting take/yuzu/momo paid homage to the brand’s Japanese heritage. Easy to follow VM guides were produced in multiple languages to help ensure a global standard throughout the campaign. Dep Sea [sic] water was also produced in an accompanying range to encourage further exploration of the companies more time honoured classic products.

TOKYO AMERICAN CLUB WEBSITE Online Event and Resource Reservation Hub Site

The Challenge Tokyo American Club required a heavily improved web presence that would become the go-to information hub on event sign up, resource reservation, news, facility guides and more ahead of the move to its temporary Takanawa facilities for the two years while the main Club site underwent reconstruction. Most importantly the new site had to be reliable and easy enough to use to convince skeptical staff and users of its day to day merits and facilitate internal organizational changes.

The Solution Limited budget saw extensive focus group sessions to ensure prioritization of the most important online functions. The sessions also revealed a lower familiarity with inline services for many of the Club’s older members. Event booking, online image galleries, news, floor guides and facility booking features were provided through an open source platform which allowed for robust operation combined with suitable flexibility and ease of training amongst key staff. Traffic increased a thousand fold from the old site inside of six months from launch and the Club’s online advertising revenue stream was born. Three years on in 2011, the site proved itself again as a cost effective online workhorse when the management elected to evolve content rather than rebuild the site during the move to the new club . Providing a serviceable solution this way saved the Club more than ten million yen in a time when every yen counted.


The Challenge A 60 page monthly publication that encapsulates the organisation’s core brand values, promotes membership benefits and keeps its members engaged with their community, all in a style and quality that’s readable enough to be stocked beyond the Club.

The Solution In the absence of a physical brand presence beyond the Tokyo American Club’s Azabudai facilities, Intouch magazine fills the role, furthering awareness of the Club in addition to its client relationship duties. Embracing editorial and design standards the envy of many news stand publications the magazine secures interviews with some of Japan’s most influential individuals, intriguing travel destinations and insightful cultural and social aspects the archipelago has to offer, its stories often reprinted by publications abroad. Available online and now stocked in dozens of locations, from VIP flight lounges to Tokyo’s high end serviced apartments, the magazine not only fulfills its original brief but successfully generates much appreciated advertsing revenue in additon to valuable exposure in venues and to audiences that money alone can’t buy.

DECANTER Restaurant and Corporate Identity

The Challenge The redevelopment of the Tokyo American Club resulted in the organization including a Michelin Star on its wish list. The opportunity for the organization to be awarded the accolade hinged upon the flagship restaurnt entering the public dining realm, a first in the Club’s then 81 year history, that to be achieved would require a change to the very private fabric it had been built on.

The Solution Working with the Club’s food and beverage directors to clearly understand the strict requirements for Michelin Star consideration, then setting about to create a culinary destination worthy of such an award. Facilitating the cultural change from the past-its-prime and poorly utilised American Room concept, a wine focused revitalized affair, Decanter, offered flexibility through an eclectic Vegas and Los Angeles inspired dining experience while highlighting a 10,000 bottle strong wine list the envy of the city. The naming, logo and accompanying materials pallet were transferable across web, print, uniform and environmental elements, enabling the creation of a space that while physically part of the Club, existed as its own entity. An accompanying public and media relations launch campaign successfully introduced Decanter on its own merits to prospective patrons and public dining to the Club’s membership.


The Challenge With Memberships dropping part way through a multimillion dollar redevelopment, the Tokyo American Club had never had cause to review its Membership applications collateral until now. Dated, ineffective and piece-meal need to be transformed into a valuable brand touch point that reflected what the new club would be. Not surprisingly it had to include red, white and blue. The existing canvas sack which also doubled as a library bag and held a mixed assortment of application forms was quickly removed from service.

The Solution Focus sessions with the membership community indicated that the international over the American aspect was the biggest draw card and that the application experience was rarely felt to match the three million yen asking price. A tactile uncoated stock matched to a single silver iteration of the logo gave a first impression inline with what membership might offer. A striking red vertical obi gave the piece visual impact. On first reveal a blue sky shot and reserved typography alluded to the future and helped satisfy the prerequisite for red, white and blue. Within, a simple card-based brochure held neatly in place by a custom designed two piece outer package, allowed for stunning photography, seasonal adjustment and upgrades without undue cost as services evolved during the redevelopment. What was to be a six month promotional piece still endures today, perfectly matching the new club and having welcoming in excess of 2000 new members and counting.

THE GREAT ADVENTURE 360 Launch Campaign

campaign site


The Challenge Tokyo American Club’s US$150 Mil new facility had been delayed by a year, in addition the opening was going to be anything but grand as full services would not be up and running for the almost nine months and the members were yet to know. Staff were tired and faith in management’s transparency and handling of the project was dropping, generating a lot of noise online. The Club needed a communications campaign that would bolster spirits on both sides, provide a platform for information as it developed over the coming months and pave the way for the not-quite-yet opening.

Direct Mail

Direct Mail

The Solution Looking back through the Club history it was not the first time it had sailed rough waters since its 1928 inception. Using the 20’s as its inspiration The Great Adventure campaign concept, with air-ship travel as its visual crutch, was slightly tongue-in-check for those astute enough to pick it up, yet vibrant and spirit-raising for all. T he campaign harked back to a simpler era when time was less critical, when promotional hype was almost frivolous and when people were less fussed about technical glitches than the ultimate grandeur of the endeavour. Covering print, environmental graphics, social media, web and a 20 foot long helium blimp, the campaign successfully eased Membership enjoyably into the phased opening of the new Club facilities, avoided a potential drop in memberships expected by the delay, reignited staff morale and drowned out negative third party blog activity from almost daily posts to nil in around 60 days from campaign launch.

PANTONE Japan Launch

The Challenge The Global standard in colour systems, Pantone, hand been in Japan for decades but in the hands of a distributor who also held rights to competing (and favoured) colour system DIC. When Pantone decided it was time to meet Japan on its own terms for the launch of their brand proper they needed a helping hand to avoid potential pit falls and smooth the way for their first baby steps on their own.

The Solution Working closely as the newly appointed Japan country managers right hand, the “Hello Pantone� campaign was created. A series of press and industry activities kicking off with a launch event, the program leveraged sympathetic influential figures from the Tokyo and Kansai design and fashion industry along with visits form the US parent company head quarters and initiatives targeted at young designers to fill a void of information about the company, its systems and its support network that had been perpetuated by the previous representatives.


The Challenge Volkswagen Group Japan wanted a way to not only keep their brand awareness high and maintain loyalty amongst their existing customer base but also wanted a mechanism to continue to build core brand elements of technical and cultural excellence well beyond the purchase date.

The Solution View Magazine allowed Volkswagen Group Japan to build compelling monthly lifestyle content in a magazine format. The content ranged from owner reviews, music, Volkswagen historical machine enthusiasts, German culture, travel and of course up coming product launches and unique offers for existing owners. From interviews with the founders of Freitag bags to specially commissioned artworks celebrating the launch of the brands go-your-own-way cross polo to mid winter race track proving sessions, engaging content as unique as the model range combined with quality stock and print execution meant the publication became a sought after perk of Volkswagen ownership within Japan.

RAINFOREST AVIARY MEGA EXHIBIT Interpretive Exhibition and Environmental Wayfinding

The Challenge To create an interpretive mega exhibit for one of Australia’s most iconic zoological parks, Taronga Zoo. The hard part, to ensure the immersive walk through exhibit, located in one of the most highly trafficked areas of the Zoo featuring some of the most timid deep rainforest fauna and flora, consistently delivered a memorable visitor experience even without ever seeing an animal.

The Solution Working with animal scientists and zoo keepers to develop a set of core messages based around key animal and plant species housed in the exhibit, a interpretive exhibition was created to provide a fulfilling visitor experience regardless of the animal cast’s customary no-shows. Embellishing the outdoor walk through illustrations and environmental graphics matched with discrete life sized sculpture and activity stations offering rubbings, interactive explanations and hidden surprises, delivered an engaging experience without fail. Sympathetic to their surrounds, the installations offered the unique benefit of exceeded the organisation’s environmentally responsible charter, using recycled Australian hardwood bridge timbers, recycled aluminum signage substrate and castings plus long wearing anodised signage, and gave an almost maintenance free life expectancy of well over 10 years.

SHUT UP AND WRITE University Applicant Scholarship Promotional Identity

The Challenge To increase profile of and applicants of an NPO organizations yearly English essay writing contest for university scholarships. Target applicants were internationally minded, English as second language students from senior high school students within Japan.

The Solution Research amongst previous potential applicants showed that the NPO’s dry, overly complex terms and conditions deterred most, while those who few who were dedicated enough attempt to apply found the topics uninspiring and the timing competed with university entrance exam preparations. To shed these lack luster associations, the campaign was reworked to a single compelling call to action, Shut Up and Write and an accompanying instructional info graphic style graphic. The NPO was shown the potential merit of revising the programs timing, relax its conditions of application and broadening its applicant base. Detailed information kits for 400 key school likely to yeild applciants were sent, including posters and FAQ’s that helped school principals champion the program within the school and staff. That year saw the entrant rate triple.

THE PENINSULA Opening Collateral

The Challenge Renown hotel group The Peninsula required a full set of on-site and off-site information, way finding and guide collateral in fitting with their global style guide to accompany the opening of their new Tokyo hotel.

The Solution Winning the project with a hand drawn sketch of the 270 degree view of the palace from the top of then still under construction premises, the client required that all material be subtly matched to their style guide’s visual language, stock and print process. Tokyo subway maps, city maps, floor guides and 100 page room compendiums were lovingly produced as a homogeneous ensemble of bilingual pieces fit for a brand as discerning as their’s.

FIND YOUR GROOVE Loyalty and Aquisition Campaign

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The Challenge The suggested buy-one-get-one-free piece of cake offer supplied by the client as their anniversary offer was going to do the brand more damage than good, its loyal customers having just endured a 12 month delay in the opening of their new Club and then braved their way through occasionally less than stellar experiences in the nine months following.

package design

package design - product reveal

The Solution Convincing the organizations executive level management of the situation at hand and the potential positive knock on effects of a well executed loyalty campaign in place of the piece of cake. Research also showed the physical vastness of the new building had a silo effect on usage, reducing overall spend. Find Your Groove acknowledged and thanked existing members for their endurance as the new facilities one year anniversary driving activity while promoting exploration of the facility through a tiered usage and rewards system. Direct mail, email blasts, print and onsite environmental graphics helped engage the 10,000 strong community of users. Revised weekly offers publicized through the organization’s social media and website throughout the campaign kept interest levels high and saw boosted traffic peak at more than 800% the previous month’s levels. Usage soared with some services experience reservations hitting capacity for the first time since the opening.

Folio - 2012  

A selection of works from creative professional Matthew Roberts designed to be viewed in conjunction with the detailed proffesional experien...

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