A Bold Strategy for a bold cheesemaker

Best known for their brand Blacksticks Blue, Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses wanted to broaden their business base and create more emphasis on the clear branding of their cheeses and NPD.

Blacksticks Blue Mega Burger Cheese Slices

Our Brief

A fourth-generation family business, Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses create hard, blue and soft cheeses in their Lancashire farmhouse dairy for all of the major supermarkets within the UK. Celebrating their 90th Anniversary in 2022, they are what many call ‘the biggest of the small’ cheesemakers. Butlers selected Farrows to become their brand partners in 2015, initially looking at brand and packaging work.

The brand were looking to bring greater clarity to the brand architecture – there was a lot of products within their portfolio and a confusing use of names, icons and other collateral which created internal and external difficulties around brand understanding and recognition.

Our objective was relatively simple, we needed to organise the product brands within a structure that sat underneath the Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses umbrella in a way that was easy to understand. The challenge was achieving this in such a way that would showcase the brand’s strong values and provide genuine cut-through in a crowded market.


  • Brand Strategy
  • Brand Identity
  • Product Naming
  • Product Branding
  • Ecommerce
  • Digital Marketing
  • Brand Guidelines
  • Packaging
  • Exhibition
  • Photography
Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses Brand Book Design by Farrows
Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses Shopify Website Design by Farrows

Farrows Approach

Initially we spent time listening, asking questions and learning; obtaining the information required to understand the current state of play. Following this stage of research and insights gathering, we were able to use our brand frameworks to create a vision of a shared understanding of how Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses wanted the future to look.

We were then able to create outcomes and strategies for each brand and product which ensured that there were clear pathways towards that future. This process often involves the creation of modular brand ranges that share a look and feel, as well rules around hero brands which are designed to help the team when selling to retailers.

The final outcome was a ‘house of brands’ which see’s Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses act as a quality mark and ‘sign off’, allowing you to travel through the range of cheeses with the guarantee that they all share the same values; being handmade with the highest quality and care. Each brand and range was able to express its own unique personality, something essential when appealing to different audiences with different taste in cheese.

I just wanted to say thank you for being inspirational! I noted your slogan included ‘Visionary Thinking and Strategy Driven’ and I appreciated these skills when discussing our brands. It’s worth the investment of time at design stage to align our thinking about the ‘Why’ in addition to the ‘What’.

Gill Hall - 2nd Generation Owner, Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses

The Results

  • + 146 %

    Increase in Website Traffic

  • + 253 %

    Increase in Organic Traffic

  • + 56 %

    Increase in Goal Conversions

  • + 36 %

    Increase in Site Health

  • + 231 %

    Increase in Site Visibility

  • + 118 %

    Increase in Social Followers

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