The Creative Web's host and Founder of SearchRPM, Michael Ramirez, recently chatted with Stu Smith, a Partner of Sputnik Creative. Stu leads his team in developing online and offline elements that work together to tell the story of a brand. When he's not discussing goals with clients and providing thoughtful leadership for his crew, Stu is out in the Austin community sharing his knowledge with others like the design students at Texas State University and The Creative Web audience. Take a listen to the podcast to hear Stu's brand building insights!



There seems to be no bounds to the brand services that Sputnik Creative provides, but as Stu explains, figuring out exactly what will work for a particular client is an art and a science.

Some of Stu's brand building insights from the interview include:

  • Getting to know Sputnik Creative – We learn a little about how Stu ended up in design and brand building as well as how Sputnik Creative came to be.
  • What Sputnik Creative classifies as a brand – A brand isn't any one thing, but is an experience-based concept that is the sum of a company as a whole.
  • Misconceptions businesses have about brands – There are many misconceptions, and Stu shares some of the most common ones he's encountered.
  • Branding vs. Marketing – Stu discusses how defining expectations upfront is important when working with larger brands.
  • Branding for ecommerce sites – As the prevalence of ecommerce grows, there is ample opportunity for designers and branding experts, but these businesses require a specific approach and an enjoyable user experience.
  • Branding approaches for Marcom – Stu fills us in on how Sputnik Creative approached the branding for Marcom by working one-on-one with the client.
  • Advice for entrepreneurs and future designers – Get advice from Stu on pursuing a passion and turning it into a career.


A big takeaway from the interview was a reference Stu made regarding Seth Godin's remark about a brand
, "But just as it takes more than a hat to be a cowboy, it takes more than a designer prattling on about texture to make a brand."

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