By Dwight Hobbes
Cre8tiv Solutions (www.cre8tivsolution.com), specializing in graphic design and branding, is a product so effective it virtually sells itself. Starting with the company’s website.
Nine sites out of 10 have one of two problems. They’re easy to access but look homemade, leaving viewers unimpressed, not particularly inclined to pursue whatever information is there.
Or, they are tricked out with glossy imagery and fancy maneuverability, difficult for anything less than the latest operating systems to manage without slowing to an annoying crawl. In other words, so much sizzle you have a hard time getting to the steak.
Cre8tiv Solutions has the best of both attributes. The site pops right up on your screen, immediately engages with a handsome layout and switches pages easily as reading a book or — more to the point — flipping through a brochure.
The first thing that comes to a prospective customer’s mind is, “That’s the quality of professionalism I want working for me.” This impression, of course, is no accident.
As Cre8tiv Solutions owner-director LaMarr Robinson says, “You can have practicality without sacrificing an attractive appearance.” So, potential clients in the market for webhosting get a viable demonstration faster than they can pick up a telephone and ask, “Just how well does your product work?”
In addition to webhosting, Cre8tiv Solutions offers a laundry list of services, including logo design, advertising and marketing strategy and tee shirt design. You can browse through a catalog of pleased clients at the website by clicking on “Portfolio,” which yields such names as B. Smith, Green Clean Organic Cotton Wipes and Precious Travels and Tours among a current total of 200 companies and growing.
Bedlam Theatre executive artistic director John Francis Bueche attests, “LaMarr and the crew at Cre8tiv asked the right questions and got to know our needs up front. All the way through the process they provided options — bold options — and yet were totally open to our input, back and forth, making sure the design fit our needs. They’re not afraid of deadlines and will power through to keep your project on track.”
At Kratos Network Empowerment Group, Lloyd Lockett, president, states, “The Cre8tiv Solutions team has developed and produced a wonderful group of business packages…conducive [to] major growth. Without the key elements that have been developed for my company, we could never be the force that we are in the corporate world.”
The uppermost workings of Cre8tiv Solutions, as quite sensibly is the case with more than a few successful operations, are the province of family. As director, Robinson is the decision-making last word and primary driving force. At his right hand is his wife Josette Robinson who heads up the printing department.
“She handles all printing. T-shirts, business cards and things.” “And things” encompasses a strong range, including product and service catalogs, press or media kits and book cover and layout design.
Size, large or small, is no object. If you’re in big business, Cre8tiv Solutions can accommodate your scope. If you’re the proverbial mom-and-pop enterprise, Robinson is flexible enough to work with you on the price. “I don’t mind helping someone out who needs to work within a budget that might not necessarily be the biggest.” He points out that, in fact, small businesses do well to realize advertising is a valuable tool for growth. “The public needs to know that you’re there. It’s about presentation, understanding the value of branding.”
This dovetails with his personal philosophy that Robinson, a resident of North Minneapolis, has made part of Cre8tiv Solutions. Reflecting on his starting the company up in 2009, “[I was] determined to not be another statistic. I began to indulge in freelance design, work for hire and volunteer work in my community. In doing so, I found that the area was saturated with small businesses that were not only suffering from lack of financial support, but [also] they didn’t last very long because they were lacking a sustainable brand ID, lacking a sufficient understanding of marketing, advertising and promotion. Businesses were completely neglectful, placing their brand image and marketing at low-priority when it’s really vital, a lifeline for the success of any business.”
At the website, click on “Giving Back” and you’ll read, “Here at Cre8tiv Solutions, giving back to the neighborhood is one of our most heartfelt beliefs. We’ve assisted nonprofit and faith-based organizations with pro-bono or discounted rate design services [and] provided opportunities for at-risk youth, unemployed single mothers, graphic designers and web developers who lost their jobs.
“[There have been] internships for graduating students, freelance projects and work experience for new college graduates in their field of interest, and job opportunities for the disabled.”
Indeed Robinson, in 2009, when he launched Cre8tiv Solutions turned to creative business types who, like himself, had gone through colleges or institutes (he graduated from The Art Institutes International Minnesota at the top of his class) and found themselves with back-breaking student loans to pay off but “were looking at jobs at [copy shops and fast food restaurants].” He invited them to join forces and invest their abilities in his entrepreneurial endeavor. Three years later, the results speak for themselves.
At length, this is a company that has prevailed owing to LaMarr Robinson putting hard work behind his vision, which can be summed up in a quote from the website, “Don’t just advertise. Connect.”
For more information on Cre8tiv Solutions, go to www.cre8tivsolution.com or call 612-290-9579.
Dwight Hobbes welcomes reader responses to P.O. Box 50357, Mpls., 55403.