Building a New Brand

Brand Brainstorm

Set­ting the Foundation

With my back­ground in Graphic Design, I have designed visual iden­ti­ties for exist­ing brands, but I’ve never had the oppor­tu­nity to develop the frame­work for a new brand from the ground up. At SCAD, I was able to work with five other stu­dents from dif­fer­ent dis­ci­plines in a spon­sored col­lab­o­ra­tive design class to build a new brand for a national client.

The new brand we helped cre­ate will launch in early 2012. Three other classes at SCAD have been build­ing off our research and brand foun­da­tion — an Indus­trial Design class cre­ated pro­to­types for the phys­i­cal prod­ucts that are part of the brand, a Ser­vice Design class worked on training/sales sup­port and inter­ac­tion design, and a Graphic/Interior Design class final­ized the store design and brand stan­dards man­ual. I can’t give away too much about the nature of the brand itself until after the launch, but I can dis­cuss more about our process.

Our task was to develop ratio­nal and emo­tional brand attrib­utes, cre­ate a brand value propo­si­tion and design the brand iden­tity frame­work strat­egy. This frame­work included the brand name, logo, short and long-term design strat­egy of the new prod­uct line, as well as the retail store expe­ri­ence and mar­ket­ing tech­niques. The scope of the project was daunt­ing at first, con­sid­er­ing we had about 8 weeks to con­duct research, pin­point design oppor­tu­ni­ties and deliver our final pre­sen­ta­tion to the client.

Dur­ing our ini­tial meet­ing with our client, the VP of Mar­ket­ing for the com­pany, we lead a brain­storm­ing ses­sion to decide on three ratio­nal and three emo­tional brand attrib­utes. After the meet­ing, my class­mates and I devel­oped def­i­n­i­tions for these attrib­utes to give them more spe­cific mean­ing for the brand.

Semantic Diffferential Method Results

Brand Design Analytics

We looked at the com­pe­ti­tion, per­formed pas­sive on-site obser­va­tions, and cre­ated a SWOT analy­sis. We then designed and exe­cuted a con­tex­tual research study, inter­view­ing tar­get cus­tomers as well as con­duct­ing prod­uct name and color mar­ket test­ing. We used the seman­tic dif­fer­en­tial research method cre­ated by Charles Osgood in order to match par­tic­i­pants’ atti­tudes towards poten­tial names and col­ors on a scale against the brand attributes.

Brand Presentation


Our ethno­graphic research showed us oppor­tu­ni­ties for the new brand to cre­ate value for its cus­tomers through design. We first pre­sented these find­ings and the accom­pa­ny­ing design strat­egy to our client in late May 2011. The meet­ing included the VP of Mar­ket­ing as well as brand man­agers, a sales direc­tor and prod­uct man­age­ment direc­tor. Based on the feed­back we received at this meet­ing, we refined the design strat­egy and pre­sented to a larger audi­ence two weeks later. Our final pre­sen­ta­tion was pitched live to our client con­tact and simul­ta­ne­ously broad­cast to exec­u­tives and upper man­age­ment in three locations. | 502: Bad gateway

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