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northbound studio


mission At Northbound Studio we create one-of-a-kind engaging content. We assemble a creative team that is harmonized with your specific project needs to ensure a personally tailored relationship. In any creative project that we are involved in, before designing anything, we assemble the best minds, hands, and technology. We develop an exclusive team structured around the needs that you as a company, organization, or individual specifically have. We do this to ensure that you will receive the best possible outcome, an outcome that is custom tailored to you and your brand story. We want to become an extension of your team to create visual tools that add value to your business.


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BOWDIE’S CHOPHOUSE THORNAPPLE BREWING CO. WHITE RIVER KNIFE AND TOOL INKY CORRLOC THE SOUTHERNER CHRISTMAS LITE SHOW HEALTH TRAINING PERFORMANCE BANGALORE TRAINING SYSTEMS HANCOCK BUILDING AND CONTRACTING KOTMAN ELECTRIC SEA-LION BOATS LAKELAND PALLETS INC. PLACE PROPERTY MANAGEMENT TANGLEWOOD WINERY WONDERLAND TIRE COMPANY SUPERIOR GROUNDCOVER


Bowdie’s chophouse Bowdie’s Chophouse is a beloved fine dining establishment nestled on a quaint street in the small coastal town of Saugatuck, Michigan. Through dedication to providing the highest quality food, drinks and experiences to their guests, Bowdie’s has been steadily growing over the last 5 years. Most recently, Bowdie’s opened up a second location in Lansing, Michigan in order to bring the same amazing experiences to the state capital region.


01 Menu design

To complete the picture new menus were designed to give visitors a consistent experience from digital to print.


website design It is often the case that if a potential customer has never been to an eating establishment, the first thing they do before deciding to make a reservation is to browse the menu online. It was important to Bowdie’s that their website integrated

an informative menu which showcased both food and drink — making it easy for the customers and potential customers to put together the perfect pairing.


We understood how important it was for Bowdie’s Chophouse to offer an experience on their website that was a continuation of their unmatched dining experience. The website needed to visually tell the story of what Bowdie’s has to offer. The specific information that a visitor to the site is looking for had to be simple to find and effectively communicated. We made it our goal to create photography

that would evoke a positive emotion in the viewer. The Bowdie’s decadent menu needed to be laid out and presented professionally and beautifully on the site. It was especially important that a visitor to the site could easily make an online reservation, for either of the Bowdie’s Chophouse locations, after viewing the menu and finding the perfect dish for dinner.

Every element of the website was hand crafted to showcase the “Bowdie’s Experience.”

open table If you have a fine dining restaurant, it is very likely that you use OpenTable. OpenTable is the industry standard for mobile restaurant reservation systems. Bowdie’s is a reservationonly restaurant and a majority of their reservations are made using this system. The pricing structure of OpenTable costs the restaurant $1 per person that makes a reservation through opentable.com or with the OpenTable mobile app. Another option is

for a restaurant to use the OpenTable widget on their website. If reservations are made on the widget rather than on opentable.com, or with the OpenTable mobile app, the cost for the restaurant reduces to 25 cents per person. We were able to offer Bowdie’s a website that not only demonstrated the fine dining experience on the website, but also gave them a solution that would save them a significant amount of money on reservations.


menu design Print is not dead. A great example of a need for a well-designed print piece is a restaurant menu. Bowdie’s print aesthetic not only needed to match the rest of their restaurant experience, but it needed to take a large amount of information and organize it in an easy to read, customer-friendly way.


thornapple brewing co. Thornapple Brewing Company is a brewery located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Established in 2017, Thornapple Brewing Company offers beer, wine, mead, spirits, and some of the best flatbread pizza in all of Grand Rapids.

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Located in Grand Rapids, Michigan ­— also known as Beer City USA — we were excited to work with a brand-new microbrewery: Thornapple Brewing Company. With the highly saturated craft beer market and brewery scene, we knew that the logo we designed for Thornapple would need to be unique, and it would need to stand out among the crowd. We began the design process by researching and creating moodboards around the Thornapple River, Thornapple trees, apples, and various other natural elements. Through this process we came across an artist in Utah who made

one-of-a-kind prints. The prints were made by applying ink to a fallen log harvested out of the forest, and pressing the inked log onto paper to make a print of the log pattern. We contacted this artist to use one of his prints for the wood texture in the Thornapple logomark. We then created the apple shape to be filled with the wood texture and added a thorn to the top. The typeface Swistblnk Monthoers was chosen to give the logo an overall rugged and hand-crafted look — embodying the natural ingredients used in their beers.


white river knife & tool White River Knife and Tool is a small, familyowned company located in the West Michigan city, Coopersville. They pride themselves on manufacturing premium knives made in the USA. White River is dedicated to hand-crafting the highest quality products that have an unmatched fit, finish and functionality for their loyal customers. Their knives are designed for hunting, fishing, survival, camping, and everyday use.


03 With an established customer base, White River Knife and Tool has an audience that is always looking forward to the release of the new year’s catalog and marketing materials. We had the pleasure of working with White River Knife and Tool on their 2018 catalog, product card deck,

photography High quality, well thought-out, and intentional photography was the backbone to all of the 2018 pieces. Every photo that we used was carefully prescribed to tell a specific story and have a certain look and feel. We wanted the photos to encapsulate a true outdoor experience, not with bright sunny skies, but with the more realistic autumn rainstorm that outdoors-people often face. We showcased the glamour of the products through the grit of the outdoors and the outdoor lifestyle.


catalog The annual print catalog has become a mainstay piece for White River Knife and Tool. In past years, the catalog was a project that White River designed with their internal marketing team, but with substantial growth over the years, they were looking for a larger team of designers to help them with this large task. Our goal for the 2018 catalog was to capture and utilize photography that

demonstrated the use cases for the various knives showcased in the catalog. Along with developing this aesthetic, we focused extra attention on the paper and finishing quality of the final catalog. This attention to detail gives an added element of craftsmanship, also found in the products that White River has to offer.

card deck Traditionally, White River Knife and Tool would send a catalog to every customer with each new knife purchase; however, we wanted to give them a more economical catalog package to distribute. We developed a “mini-

catalog� that includes a double-sided card for each product. One side of the card gives the product’s specifications and the other side utilizes the same lifestyle photography used in the large format catalog.


inky Inky, based out of Washington D.C., uses state-ofthe-art technology to deliver encrypted, secure and affordable email management to enterprise companies. In a world where email phishing and cyber-hacking is an ever-present issue, enterprise companies are losing billions of dollars each year to scams. In response, Inky has emerged with cutting edge technology to help enterprise level companies combat these attacks.


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photography The photos depict a modern enterprise office that allows the viewer to see themselves and their workplaces using the software. The

clean, bright atmosphere also detracts from the “dark, secretive� image shared by the rest of the industry.


When formatting a design plan for the various marketing materials, we were challenged with creating effective visual elements to tell the Inky story. We knew that screen shots of the software and infographics would need to be used, but we felt that a human element was necessary in painting the full picture, and helping the client understand Inky’s goals. We

also knew that what often sets apart decent materials from exceptional marketing pieces is quality photography. The use of stock photography creates a feeling of inauthenticity for the viewer, so we strayed away from that approach. Instead, we rented an office, curated talent, and put together a team of stylists to execute our artistic vision.


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corrloc CorrLoc is a globally focused packaging company with local roots in West Michigan. Founded in 2005, CorrLoc has become the premier choice for corrugated pallets and various engineered packaging materials. CorrLoc focuses on an environmental and cost-effective approach to alternative packaging products. They are an agile company that is always ready to jump in and help clients with their packaging problems using their patented design.

CorrLoc is growing rapidly in the packaging industry and needed to showcase themselves as a key player with cutting edge technology. Their original DIY logo and branding was unsuccessful and needed to be easily recognizable as something

new in the industry. CorrLoc also needed an onbrand and professional website, along with various other marketing materials to grow their presence in the packaging industry and position themselves as an elite product.


website design The world of packaging websites consists of bland and stagnant URLs with little design, unappealing visuals, and too much copy. We wanted to create a viewer experience that showcased corrugate pallets as the industrychanging, groundbreaking technology that they really are. The modern, clean branding

lent itself to a digestible, experiential website with a tech-feel. Custom-directed photography elevated the products to the proper level. Minimal environments and dramatic angles add to the technology context we aimed to build.


print In the packaging industry, print materials are extremely valuable. It was without question that we would need to develop a family of print materials for use in CorrLoc’s sales process. Using the brand and aesthetic from the web, we translated dense information into

a tri-fold brochure and a 12 page saddlestitched booklet, which were printed on quality paper — once again elevating the product and the company as a game-changer in the industry. These materials are used for inperson meetings and for various trade shows.


the southerner Dreaming of their first website, The Southerner called on Northbound to capture their genuine Southern hospitality. The Southerner is a mix of farmhouse and deli. The Southerner offers that traditional Southern hospitality, a drink list that will keep you out all night, and a spot on the water perfect for brunch with the family. They asked if we could clean up their menus and create them their first website. Done and done.


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website A smooth transition from the restaurant to their website was our end goal, so we kept the website simple, just like their menus. While on a drive down south with the family, owner Katie Fris relied on her phone to choose hotels

and restaurants. If her options did not have a quality website she passed them by without question. The day she returned to Saugatuck Katie called us for design work.


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christmas lite show Christmas Lite Show is a holiday tradition for many West Michigan families. Consisting of almost two million lights, three tunnels, and over 50 animated displays, Christmas Lite Show has been organically gathering their guests in its 21-year lifespan.


We began working with the Christmas Lite Show for their 20th anniversary. This special anniversary gave them a key opportunity to grow, starting with a re-branding. Christmas Lite Show wanted to achieve a kid-friendly, modern, whimsical look and we had so much fun creating it for them! Our team carried over their fresh new branding into a

new e-commerce website, email campaigns, ticket design, and other print media. Inspiration was found in children’s books, hand typography, and of course, all things Christmas to create a paper-cut style, hand-drawn logo that works for a variety of applications.

print We updated the existing ticket design with their new branding. The tickets are fun, eyecatching, and family-friendly. The brochure offers an “all-you-need-to-know” look into Christmas Lite Show and details the fun events

and traditions that it hosts. The illustrations focus on the nostalgia and whimsy that the Christmas Lite Show inspires — resonating with people of all ages.


Social Media In 2018, we began managing all of Christmas Lite Show’s social media accounts. At the time, they had a respectable presence on Facebook with 4.5k followers. In the span of 6 months, we increased that following by nearly 22%, increased their overall

impressions by 5,431%, and increased their engagements by 11,756%. We accomplished all of this by creating a solid strategy and on-brand content. This led 4,782 visitors to the website and generated over $2,000 in revenue conversions.


Photography & Videography Our first photo/video shoot for Christmas Lite Show happened prior to the 2018 season opening at their brand new Red Nose Run 5K and Winter Wonder Walk events. We captured a library of assets to advertise the 2019 events, and made a video that captured the magic of Christmas so well, it actually made the clients tear up. On a very cold, very snowy evening in early January, we headed to the closed-

for-the-season Christmas Lite Show for another photo/video shoot. Our goal was to create a library of assets to use in our marketing for next season including several specific story videos, as well as short clips for social media. We coordinated talent, created storyboards, and art directed the shoot as well. We were very happy with the results and so were our clients!


health training performance Personal Training with a twist. Health Training Performance (HT Performance) is committed to “mindful, balanced, achievement.� With customized workouts, sessions that fit any lifestyle, and nutrition plans, HT sets the bar higher than your average trainer. Health Training Performance was ready to create a brand that accurately conveys their goals and cultivates a community among their clients. HT Performance is a new type of personal training that focuses on individualized plans for each client who commits to a wellness journey. Each step is carefully created and planned with the client’s personality and goals in mind. Several sessions are dedicated to getting to know the individual to ensure that no time is wasted and every move is a step in the right direction.


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logo & brand The mantra: “Mindful, Balanced, Achievement” is a key part of HT Performance’s brand. Before we created a visual brand, this mantra was the essence of the company’s identity. We wanted the logo to convey these abstract concepts in a visual way. Balance was our first source of inspiration. The logo has visual balance, but still has movement. HT is, after

all, a fitness-focused company. Their logo should have movement and energy. The three lines in the logo represent each concept in the mantra. The resemblance to a heartbeat signifies achievement, and the hard work it takes to get there. The circle, present in some variations of the logo, represents mindfulness and the holistic approach HT values.


bangalore training systems Bangalore Training Systems works toward fighting the health crisis that is caused by the modern lifestyle. They focus on supporting men, especially veterans, as they take on a new lifestyle, including diet and exercise.

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The owner of Bangalore found his passion for fitness during his time in the United States Marine Corps. His goal ­— assisting other veterans in maintaining a healthy lifestyle — inspired the

overall branding of the company. Subtle nods to military iconography give the brand and website a unique, masculine, and formidable appearance.


website Bangalore Training Systems needed a space to connect with their clients and a platform to provide them with relevant health information. The responsive website is clean, easy to

navigate, and mission-focused. The blog section shares awesome health content for Bangalore’s current and potential clients.


hancock building & contracting Hancock Building and Contracting had a very basic, outdated logo and no other branding in place when they approached us for help. Their goal was to visually represent themselves as the reputable, professional, and trustworthy company that they are.


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branding We began the branding and logo design process by researching their competition and studying what made Hancock different in their industry. Their diverse service offerings as well as their attention to detail set them apart. We focused on these unique selling

points when we developed their brand. Our choices in typography and color reflect their values. We compiled these aspects of their brand into a comprehensive brand guide that also included their logo and its usage.


logo Design The first challenge in creating the Hancock Building and Contracting logo was to appeal to and communicate with both residential ho me ow ne r s a nd l a r g e c o m me r c i a l construction companies seeking experienced contractors. We also had to create something that felt family-owned and operated, but also

very high quality. Their new logo is elegant, approachable, and clear. It successfully describes their company and speaks to their diverse audiences. We also created a few logo variations for them to ensure that it worked on a variety of applications like on their business cards and as truck graphics.


kotman electric We were asked to create an identity for the Kotman Electric brand that was relatable yet unique. With a large field of competitors in the West Michigan area, electricians and the work they do are familiar by default. The challenge was to develop an identity that showcased Kotman Electric’s friendly and professional electrician services.


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branding It was important that the Kotman Electric brand showcased their friendly and professional attitude. We chose Portico as the primary font family because it effectively communicates the

Kotman Electric brand while maintaining its uniqueness. The chosen primary color system — Spruce and Current — also allows the brand to show off its welcoming identity.


logo Design In electrical work, symbols are often used in blueprints to communicate layout. The resistor symbol is used to provide the given value of resistance to the passage of electric current, and we thought it was a great way to

showcase Kotman Electric’s vast knowledge and expertise. The logo prominently displays the resistor symbol along with a professional yet approachable typeface.

Icon As part of the Kotman Electric logo suite, we created this abbreviated icon to be used in place of the logo when applicable. The mark effectively represents the Kotman Electric brand in a more concise manner.


sea-lion boats The boating industry is competitive, especially in the South Florida area, so Sea-Lion needed a way to stand out. They needed to be able to effectively reach their audience of buyers, who are passionate and particular about their needs. Relatively new to the industry, Sea-Lion needed help if they were to be successful. We took on the challenge, providing them with a refresh to their logo, as well as their brochures. Their social media platforms were not reaching their full potential, so we took over to boost their visibility. In addition, we found it necessary to do a website update, making their site more user-friendly and on-brand.Â


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print We worked with Sea-Lion to provide a refresh of their printed materials. In order to distinguish Sea-Lion boats to boat buyers, clear and detailed descriptions were necessary. The quality of their printed materials needed

to adequately show the quality that they guarantee to each and every owner of a SeaLion boat. We laid out all of their information in a clean, yet comprehensive way, including updated imagery and a newly refined logo.

Website In addition to their printed materials, SeaLion’s website needed a complete redesign. The new website would need to appeal to their target audience and provide them with all the information they would need throughout the boat buying process. The website’s new design showcases what makes Sea-Lion boats unique in the market. In addition to

telling the brand story, the website needed to give visitors insight into the specifics of each boat. Specifications, layout, and features are important to prospective buyers, and are prominently shown throughout the website. The craftsmanship is highlighted in the large photos that are featured on each page.

social media Having an active social media presence is important in this particular industry. Building up Sea-Lion’s Instagram and Facebook profiles has had a tremendous impact as it has become another way for customers and interested parties to get a look at all that the company has to offer. Social Media also serves as a platform for customers to reach out easily for quotes or more information. It is also important that Sea-Lion is able to communicate with

potential buyers to keep them informed and answer their questions. We took to Facebook and Instagram to post on-brand content that would interest potential buyers and encourage them to interact with the brand.


lakeland pallets inc. Proudly from the Great Lakes region, Lakeland Pallets thrives on quality service and innovative solutions for their customers. Lakeland builds pallets, crates, and boxes for a diverse customer base. They also provide varying types of lumber products. Lakeland works every day to ensure that the best products and prices are being offered to their customers. In the saturated pallet industry, there are competitors around every corner with essentially the same product. What makes a pallet company stand out is their dedication to service and forward thinking. Lakeland Pallets was in need of sales and marketing materials that gave them a first impression that was a step above the competition. Specifically, Lakeland needed a print brochure — one that their sales team could use to leave with current and potential customers — as well as an updated web presence in the form of a brand-new, responsive website. In order to create these marketing materials it was important to update their photo library with high quality custom photography.


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website design Lakeland Pallets needed a website that would clearly tell their brand story and show customers what their experience would be like working with them. After developing a strong concept anchored in user experience, we used custom photography to show why Lakeland is unique: their process and people.

Dense information is made digestible by a solid page structure and graphic elements that break up the copy. The customer is able to quickly find the information they seek, and ­— as a bonus — enjoy a nice clean aesthetic while they do.


print Potential clients are routinely fielding coldcalls from pallet companies who are almost indistinguishable. Lakeland’s leave-behind brochure solves that issue for them. This captivating print piece uses concise copy and custom photography to show clients why Lakeland is different.


Place property MANAGEMENT Place Property Management wanted to differentiate itself from the start. Unlike other property management companies, Place puts relationships first. We helped them develop their brand, and then created some print sales collateral and a website.

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website design The Place website adheres to their brand and conveys the same messages. It’s easy to navigate, functions well across all devices and allows residents to easily login and communicate with the Place management team and staff .


Branding For the Place brand, we came up with three distinct concepts, all emphasizing Place’s focus on the people, and put them in front of their team. They went with a very modern, clean, simple option that we think works perfectly for them.

The logo combines their initial letter, “P” with the location symbol in a concise and visually appealing mark. Their typeface, Absolute Pro, is legible with just a hint of variance.


tanglewood winery The roots of Tanglewood Winery go back three generations to the 1960s when the blueberry farm that Tanglewood sits on first began growing berries in Holland, Michigan. Positioned between the Tulip Time festival grounds and Holland beach, Tanglewood Winery is a producer of premium fruit, port, and dessert wines. Every batch is made with 100% locally grown and sourced fruit. No fillers, no artificial flavors, just the true taste of Michigan.


15 We started working with Tanglewood Winery as soon as they decided to make wine. They came to us with a great product and an idea for a name — that was it. The first step in working with them was to develop a brand identity and logo. The winemaker, Trevor, had a rough vision for his logo and brand so we took his vision and made it a reality. Following the design process for the logo and brand we

had to begin the process of designing labels for Tanglewood’s mainstay wines: Blue Silk, Blue Blood, Frontenac, and Traminette. Trevor also requested a variety of print materials for trade shows and tasting events. We had the privilege of designing sell sheets and flyers to promote the Tanglewood products. Throughout our design process, we focused on a specific message: Tanglewood is classy fruit wine.


Marketing materials As with any business to consumer product, it is of the utmost importance that the product and the brand is unique, relatable, and stands out from the competition. Tanglewood Winery has a mission of making the best fruit wines on the market. Additionally, they are aiming to break the stereotype of fruit wine as a “cheap

lack-luster product” and make it a full-bodied, classy farm-to-table experience. All marketing collateral, both digital and print, needed to convey that message. By combining rough and natural textures with classic typography and photography, we are able to communicate that brand story to Tanglewood’s target market.

Looking for a way to integrate the logo into texture-rich print pieces, we had the idea to create a tactile version of the logo. Our solution was this wax seal. Tanglewood was so pleased with the seal that it has become a part of their physical packaging. Select bottles are sealed with wax and stamped with the logo.


social media In an effort to maintain brand consistency across all channels, we were happy to set up and manage their social media accounts. On Facebook and Instagram, we share blog posts, events, and release information.


website We designed a website that focused on our messaging: classy fruit wine. The website shares Tanglewood’s history using old family photos depicting the farm and the blueberry harvest. This page solidifies Tanglewood as a real, local, family business and experts in the fruit farming

industry. An important function of the website was to show where interested buyers could purchase Tanglewood wines in stores near them. The website serves as both a brand tool and a functional sales piece.

point-of-purchase The wine aisles of supermarkets and liquor stores are filled with an array of colors, typefaces, and messages. Helping Tanglewood wines stand out was a challenge. We also wanted to ensure that the customer would

understand that it was 1) blueberry wine, because blueberry wine is a rarity, and 2) that it was locally produced, as the local farm-totable is a big trend for shoppers.


wonderland tire company Wonderland Tire goes above and beyond your average tire center. Wonderland has been a staple tire company in the community since 1978, providing a broad selection of products and services in both retail and commercial markets. Wonderland Tire is committed to being a leader in the industry by providing quality service and continuous innovation.

As of 2015, Wonderland Tire had done little to no marketing. They began to realize that in order to compete in the market, they were going to need to step-up their marketing game. We started our work with them by updating their logo and developing a solid and consistent brand. This was important as a backbone for the development of all materials moving forward. We supply all of Wonderland Tire’s visual needs, from direct promotion mailers to in-depth printed sales materials. In this way, we make sure that they have materials and visuals that effectively communicate to their customers. The largest challenge that we face is how to have a consistent brand across both commercial and retail while appealing to, most of the time, very different audiences.


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marketing materials Wonderland Tire uses a number of print materials in their sales and promotion activity. Their sales team is active at different commercial industry trade shows which require displays and pertinent materials for each industry. A unique tool we developed for Wonderland is a sales folder that is customizable based on specific customer

needs. The folder holds a series of different inserts covering every service and offering that Wonderland sells. Salespeople are able to bring just the right information for their prospective clients, saving both the client and the salesperson time and energy.


17 A great amount of time was spent following the Superior Groundcover trucks across the Midwest to capture photos and videos that would be used to demonstrate the capabilities and services that Superior has to offer.


superior groundcover Superior’s team places hundreds of thousands of cubic yards of mulch, playground wood fiber, aggregate, compost, green roof soils, and sand each year throughout the United States using the world’s largest fleet of Express Blower® trucks. They are dedicated to providing unmatched service to clients in a variety of industries. When Superior Groundcover came to us to handle all of their marketing needs, they had a website, but it was very

outdated. They also had some pieced together brochures, but they were not professional. It was important to Superior to portray the same quality and attention to detail in their marketing materials that is given to every one of their various jobs. It was also key that their print materials and website visually showcased their capabilities so that customers and future customers were able to see that Superior is the best choice for the job.


booklets The Superior Groundcover sales team relies on their print brochures to clearly describe their varied services. The brochures that they were using were pieced together by their sales team and did not represent the unmatched quality of their work. We were able to work with Superior

to hone in on the proper organization of their services and create a series of print brochures that showcase the variety of what Superior has to offer. These books are a captivating tool that can be given to customers and potential customers to help sell their Superior services.

website design In order to remain relevant to their customer base, and stand out among their competition, Superior needed to update their website. Because Superior offers so many varied services, our challenge was to design an elegant user experience to ensure that customers knew right where to find the service or information they were seeking. After solidifying the content and functionality, we put our creativity to work designing a bright, unique website. Superior’s new website makes finding your groundcover solution an easy, enjoyable task.


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Northbound Studio Portfolio 2019  

At Northbound Studio we create one-of-a-kind engaging content. We assemble a creative team that is harmonized with your specific project nee...

Northbound Studio Portfolio 2019  

At Northbound Studio we create one-of-a-kind engaging content. We assemble a creative team that is harmonized with your specific project nee...

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