Armed with a bike, camera, and plenty of water, we set out to profile the creative agency scene in Minneapolis. Follow our journey.
Duffy & Partners
Core Services: Branding, Packaging, Graphic/Communication
Additional Services: Advertising, Innovation, Design Strategy, Research/Insights, Environmental
“Our mission and our goal is to enhance everyday life for people around the world through design.”
Highly respected and renowned throughout Minneapolis, the U.S., and across the globe, Duffy & Partners have a unique ability to use design as a differentiator, enabling a brand’s language to be communicated beyond the shelf. Their small size has enabled them to continually collaborate with clients on a personal level, which has resulted in long-standing relationships focused on solving business problems through design.
Joe and Joseph Duffy are engaging creative masterminds who feel strongly about the value design provides in changing people’s minds about a product or service. They’ve taken advantage of the densely populated creative community in MPLS to form a team that enjoys both their work and their lives. For almost 30 years, Joe Duffy has been leading his team, delivering real marketplace results for clients.
Focused on “everyday brands”, Duffy is as much known for their packaging skill as they are for their holistic brand identity work. They are committed to building authenticity and designing own-able parameters of a brand. They’ve developed a 3-step process to discovering a brand’s history and competition in order to craft relatable brand language. In their own words, “[their] specialty is paying homage to where a brand has been, maintaining the brand loyalty built thus far, and refreshing brands but not forgetting their history.”
A recent example of their holistic creative output can be seen in the rebranding of Mall of America (MOA) as they celebrate their 20 year anniversary. Over the course of this year, Duffy’s “Always New” rebranding of MOA will be rolling out across packaging, environmental, web, and promotions. Check out this reel of their great work:
Duffy has proven themselves valuable to a variety of brands from Aveda, Minute Maid, Thymes, Sony, to local bike sharing organization, Nice Ride MN (which enabled our own visit). One behavior that has proven essential for them is inviting their clients into the creative process early on as they quickly translate a creative brief into a visual brief helping to avoid surprises or misaligned expectations.
In the spirit of advancing the practice, Duffy likes to share their learnings with the creative community. They do this through workshops in their own studio and as invited experts speaking at key industry events, most recently at The Dieline Package Design Conference on Brand Ennobled—Honoring Equity and Reviving Relevance.
They’ve reclaimed space along the river in the abandoned Mill District in Minneapolis providing them with views to die for! With high ceilings and low walls, their studio is free-flowing, inspiring, and just plain cool. There’s nothing intimidating about their space, in fact is feels a bit like an adult playground, in the best way possible. It’s colorful, there’s Fisher-Price toys on the shelves, and it seems like you could get away with riding your bike inside.
Check out Duffy’s portfolio on Agency Spotter to learn more and see how you’re connected…
…if you’ve worked with them, give them a rating
…if you like what you see, share their portfolio
…if you’re interested in seeing how they could help you, contact them
Stay tuned as we continue our up-close profiles of great creative agencies in Minneapolis!