What’s cooking in the innovative brand/ creative sector in Norway
Revolutionizing Norwegian Branding: The Story of How Also Known As™️ transformed Norway’s Brand Landscape with Unconventional Creativity”.
Also Known As (AKA) is behind some of the most innovative marketing campaigns in Norway during the 2010s, excelling in reaching young audiences and creating buzz around the brands they showcase. They have played a crucial role in making KARPE Norway’s biggest rap duo and establishing Norway’s official post service as a natural choice for young users.
Masters of hip and cool
Over the years, they have developed campaigns and online and in-store communication, strategically and creatively working on digital campaigns, as well as image, product, and brand building for both artists and major industrial giants.
“We come from working with artists, and young communities, creating album covers, merch, and generating hype on social media. We’ve brought this approach into projects with large and more established brands like Norways National Museum Norways biggest bank, and the Postal Service” – Even Suseg, CEO, and Designer
Suseg is tired of major brands paying agencies exorbitant fees to create content that disappears from billboards or falls to the bottom of the feed after a few days. He believes brand activation is crucial to gaining attention, and this is something Also Known As specializes in. For such projects, they have already experienced a shower of awards and diplomas.
With Posten Norge, they got people to buy physical products, and merch, and use postal services; a product that became a sensation among celebrities and influencers. With Redbull, they created a clothing collection and a store when launching their new drink, and with Oslo Pride, they created physical products that people bought, loved, and spread across various channels.
“We believe that activating a brand in a physical way will give the brand more credibility and a greater buzz effect,” says Suseg.
Image sequences from Posten, Redbull, and Oslo Pride.
A small team challenging big clients
Director Thomas Flått, photographer Michael Angeles, and designer Even Suseg had worked on creative hobby projects together for several years. Even, those who previously worked at Scandinavian Design Group, Metric, and HES, saw the benefits of working more broadly and interdisciplinary with expertise beyond just graphic design. Together, they established Also Known As in 2019.
“It was an extreme feeling of freedom to work with Thomas and Mike, who had expertise in a completely different field than myself, namely photo and film. We are a small team and we are among the best in these fields, allowing us to deliver faster and think holistically in everything we deliver.” -Even Suseg, CEO, and Designer
Suseg claims they constantly hear, “You guys just do cool stuff,” and that some clients are afraid to ask when it comes to more traditional or corporate assignments. Suseg believes that’s precisely why major corporations and brands also turn to Also Known As. Satisfied customers often highlight that they like that Also Known As challenges established brands, pushing them into new styles, environments, and expressions.
From Posten Norge to Post Malone
AKA collaborated with Posten on a project with POL advertising during the pandemic when Norwegian festivals had to shut down. Here, they took a traditional brand and made it credible in new arenas and among new, young users, says Suseg. Alongside POL advertising, they tried to connect the postal service´s packaging service with references and key figures in the international underground culture, music, and art to make Posten a natural service choice for younger people.
Well-known artists like Matoma, Isah, and Gabrielle designed clothes alongside artist Mathias “Ma$arati” Nordby, who also worked with superstar Post Malone. Through engaging content, graphic packaging, and strategy, AKA’s Posten campaign reached 3,100,000 users, had 22,300,000 impressions on social media,
and an 83% increase in likes on Posten’s pages.
Image sequences from Posten, highlights.
The project was featured in newspapers, on TV, and among influencers worldwide. Through solid content such as photos, videos, community building, and stunts, Posten Norge gained a lot of attention while also supporting young, talented creators. A win-win situation for all parties, says Suseg, encouraging other major brands to dare to do similar things.
Building Norway’s Biggest Artist
For 10 years, AKA has collaborated with Norway’s biggest music group, Karpe. Through consulting, identity design, merch, concept, live, animation, visuals, social media, photos, and film, this collaboration has been a long journey. The journey has lifted KARPE from being a rap duo playing at Rockefeller to becoming Norway’s biggest musical sensation, filling Oslo Spektrum ten times in a month. Design, communication, and constantly new conceptual and visual tools have played a crucial role in developing the Karpe brand, which, besides music, has been taken into music films, documentaries, clothing collections, exhibitions, and intimate performance and theatre events.
Image series KARPE HIGHLIGHTS, including a picture of the Crown Prince Norway with Also Known As
“Karpe and Also Known As have been working together for almost 10 years, and together we have realized universes of our own and shared visions. They have clearly left their mark on our launches, projects, and campaigns. They have been innovative, timely, and forward-looking at the same time. They have always challenged us. Also Known As has an international touch, and in their way, they are a leading figure in young Norwegian popular culture. Karpe, as you know it today, would not have been the same without Also Known As.” -Magdi Abdelmaguid, Karpe
In 2023, they won gold for the launch campaign for Omar Sheriff in the Visuelt Awards. For the release of Heisann Montebello, Also Known As received two gold awards in the Visuelt Awards 2020. Heisann Montebello is also part of the exhibition “Enlightened – Glimpses from a Cultural History” at the National Library. Side by side with old relics from the viking age, AKA’s works are exhibited at the exhibition that collects important moments, major breakthroughs, creative masterpieces, and crucial events in Norway’s history from 1100 until today.
The Art of Engaging the Youngsters
Also Known As aims to challenge the classic campaign format and uses a wide range of tools to create expectations and a common thread in all forms of experiences. They have special expertise in the youth audience segment.
“Firstly, I believe young people today have a much more critical eye when it comes to advertising and communication. We have managed to hit a nerve because we are genuinely interested in lifestyle, culture, and music, and also keep an eye on what’s happening. And we always want to use tools and people we genuinely support, both in front of and behind the camera.” -Thomas Flått, head of film and direction
The clients they work with get a lot of free marketing through them because of their position in youth culture in Norway says Suseg. They are good at creating a ripple effect, attention, and visibility around their content, giving all the projects they undertake added value. If we work with DnB, I can guarantee that DnB reaches new customers just because we get to do a fun project with them that we believe in and choose to push around and highlight among our followers, says Suseg.
“We have our finger on the pulse of what’s happening, are updated, and at the same time have a large network. This is extremely important when working with a young audience.” -Even Suseg, CEO, and Designer.
Young media users are much more critical and harder to reach, but project after project, they see that they hit this target audience right in the heart with their content, says Suseg. He emphasizes credibility, networking, and passion as important reasons for success. Furthermore, it is essential to use people in the target audience you are speaking to, whether it’s casting for a commercial or lighting on set. Also Known As is a big fan of young, talented, and self-taught individuals and collaborates with the best in their field to create content that the target audience recognizes and wants to buy, share, or engage with.
Multidisciplinary as a success criterion
“New clients ask what we really do. Are you a design agency, a film studio, photographer?” -Even Suseg, CEO, and Designer
Suseg says he doesn’t want to be associated with being good at a little bit of everything but that they would rather be the three best at brand building in these three disciplines and be three people who work holistically in all disciplines to build strong campaigns and brands for their clients. The name Also Known As comes with the intention that they did not want to limit their identity and communicate that they are both a multidisciplinary agency with the ability to take on different projects that resonate with the company’s values. They have expanded to be more than just Also Known As and have used the name to develop their own brands, known as the clothing brand Also Worldwide, the radio station AlsoRadio, and club concepts at festivals and clubs.
“Our name gives us a natural opportunity to grow and become bigger. We do not limit ourselves to one industry or one field, but what describes us best is our playfulness and inclusion of culture and diversity in the work we do.” -Michael Angeles, photographer
In traditional brand building, you have created a logo and identity and let people use this to varying degrees. The magic happens only when you have design, film, photos, and activation together; then you get the brand to live much more, says the team. They add that they believe in interdisciplinary work and that the disciplines blend into each other, but each one of them still remains the “expert” in their field.
Their clients use Thomas to make films, Mike to take photos, and even to create graphics and identity. The three talk throughout the process and give each other feedback on how all the elements can play together best, says Suseg. Suseg has extensive experience working in environments dominated by designers. For him, there is a unique value in working in an environment where they are so diverse.
“I have my starting point in how a brand should look visually and graphically, Mike thinks ideas within photography, Thomas thinks based on film and direction, and therefore the result becomes better.” Even Suseg, CEO, and Designer
In conclusion, Suseg believes that there are some lengthy, unnecessary processes in the agency industry, such as long meetings, slow decisions, and marketing managers having to keep track of too many service providers in various fields.
“We are doers and like to get things done without compromising on quality. We challenge many traditional film companies, design agencies, and content producers precisely because we can give our customers added value when they work with us. They get the movie, they get the poster, and they get the graphics, images, and also a set of tools for how the brand can be activated on a physical level.”-Even Suseg, CEO, and Designer.