Nina Hale Agency Rebrands as Collective Measures
Collective Measures CEO Donna Robinson

Nina Hale Agency Rebrands as Collective Measures

The Minneapolis marketing firm’s CEO explains why now is actually the perfect time to come out with an updated brand story and vision.

At a time when many companies are reevaluating their value proposition, Nina Hale is quite clear on what it stands for, and today, the Minneapolis marketing agency is rebranding to reflect it. The company’s new name is Collective Measures.

“We thought about delaying it,” CEO Donna Robinson says, in reference to the Covid-19 pandemic. “But now is the time to bring our employees together and talk about what we stand for.”

The transformation is actually several years in coming. Entrepreneur and marketing pro Nina Hale founded her eponymous firm in 2005 with a focus on what was then a mysterious aspect of the Internet to many businesses: search engine optimization. Fifteen years later, the company’s team of nearly 100 specializes in strategic integration of digital and traditional media, paid search, social media, content strategy and marketing analytics. The agency was sold to its employees in 2014 when Hale, now board chair, stepped back from day-to-day leadership. Robinson was appointed CEO in 2015.

“Every year, Nina has let go a little bit more,” Robinson says. “In the fall, we started thinking, maybe now is the time for a name change.”

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But the work and culture won’t change, says Robinson, which is how the team arrived at the name Collective Measures. “Collective” to acknowledge the employee owners who have helped to build the agency; “measures” to represent the performance-driven nature of the business. The company worked with Electric Advertising on its new name, logo and overall look, described as an “abstract and optimistic representation of data and measurement.”

While rebranding may be an extreme example, thinking about what your company stands for and the image it projects is especially important in difficult times, Robinson says.

“You’ve got to find your genuine voice during this time; don’t try to create a new one,” Robinson advises. “Think about your key benefits.”

Business is holding relatively steady for Collective Measures, Robinson says. A few clients cut back due to the pandemic, but others are seeking additional help. “Companies that may have been behind suddenly realize they need to upgrade their digital presence. It’s about shifting dollars—maybe you were doing event marketing; now you want more online.”

Collective Measures switched up its own announcement plans: instead of unveiling the new name and logo at its annual spring client event at the Walker Art Center with nearly 300 invited guests, the agency called them each individually, and delivered swag bags to employees homes with Collective Measures gear.

Says Robinson, “It’s ok to acknowledge that things are not normal right now.”