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  • Jill Macdonald

What Makes Us Unique is You

Updated: Jan 22

mic & mac started by accident. That’s not the truth – our agency started because of serendipity, but I am resisting that word because it sounds flakey. At times however, the universe does speak.

Last summer (2021), Catherine and I were each, separately, mired in the isolation of home-based offices. Catherine was working on soulless contract projects while I struggled to advance my novel beyond the drippy first draft stage. We didn’t know what we needed to bust out, but we were aware that something had to change.


Enter serendipity. Two small business owners in my life realized that they needed websites (finally), one from the ground up, including a logo and a full suite of brand assets. I knew I could help them, but not on my own. Catherine immediately came to mind because she has the digital know-how, graphic design background and we work well together. But it had been a while and she was hesitant to set out on her own. I convinced her.


Right off the mark, we flourished. Collaboration is freeing. It’s a pair of wings. We dove in like no time had passed since our previous projects and threw ideas back and forth, challenged each other and gradually homed in on what we do best: Listen to our clients.


Small businesses are genius because they can be themselves. There are no brand rules, no boxes, expectations or precedents. Organic creativity comes the owner’s personality – what do they want to project, attract, where are they looking to grow, where are they comfortable and how can we help them distinguish comfort from habit, truth from what feels familiar.


It takes time to get know clients. That is the reward. After our first round of logo concepts with Alpine Specialists, Catherine had a pretty good idea of the owner’s risk tolerance. Conventional was not going to work for him. With Magpie & Larch, our client wanted to update her branding, and develop a website that expressed her unique small business practice. I spent time picking up her vocabulary, how she spoke about her work and discovering the values behind her methods. It was a true joy to deliver websites that express these very different personalities, which in turn makes them stand out in their respective fields – because what makes our work unique is our clients.


mic & mac came about when we had a moment to reflect on why we were having so much fun, how vital it was to collaborate again, to meet people and use their expressiveness to channel new ideas and marketing concepts. We love the creativity small businesses offer, the opportunity they present to try organic content marketing concepts because it’s all about people. And at the end of the day, that is our reward. Who we spend time with matters the most.


~ Jill Macdonald


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