For the past few months we’ve been refreshing the JH brand so we could tell a clearer, stronger story about the talented company we’ve built and the brilliant things we’ve achieved.
Working in-house, we’ve overhauled our visual identity, tone of voice, and more…
Why did our brand need updating?
Over the last year we’ve been ramping up our marketing activity, and becoming a Magento Enterprise partner meant doubling-down on those efforts. Our brand was being pushed to the limit as we produced a range of materials for fairs, conferences, prospects, and our own staff.
We were having to evolve our visual identity and message on the fly to suit different applications, and that meant inconsistencies were creeping in. With several events on the calendar, and big plans for our website, it was time to refresh our brand system so we could have greater flexibility and cohesion.
How did we approach the project?
The project began by understanding the aspirations of our design, marketing, and sales teams, and how the existing brand was limiting their potential. Everyone agreed that our name, logo, and red palette, had positive recognition that we wanted to retain, but the elements that built on those foundations — our secondary colours, fonts, imagery, and copy — needed to work harder for us.
The design team presented a few routes the identity could take. Each offered a different visual theme, but all riffed on our logo’s triangle; a shape which we felt provided a motif we could use to link our designs, much as we’d been using our brand red. Even in these initial concepts, we demonstrated how the brand would be applied to business cards, to banners, to flyers, and slide decks; it was critical that adaptability was baked into the ideas we developed.
Over the following weeks, we continued to develop the brand design. We explored further applications, solving edge cases and rolling the tweaks back into the core system. This meant when we produced new brand guidelines, we could provide practical examples of how to combine the visual elements, so anyone could create good looking materials.
In parallel to this visual work, we’ve also been rethinking our brand message and tone of voice. We’ve reworked most marketing materials, including a complete overhaul of our website, to provide the information and insights that give a true picture of who we are, what we do, and how we do it.
How are we launching the new brand?
Having created a striking new brand, we wanted every touchpoint to benefit from it. But this meant overcoming some significant logistical challenges to roll it out. A few key decisions have helped us achieve this:
- We’re taking a phased approach, rather than a big bang, allowing us to prioritise the most visible materials like project proposals and our website.
- The design team has been creating artwork and workflows that are accessible to other teams, reducing dependency on particular people and software.
- Brand ‘guardians’ in each team have been testing those assets and taking responsibility for their team’s respective documents.
Watch out for our new identity, online and in person, as we continue to deploy it over the next couple of months.