New brand identity for a start-up business.

Dr Nadya Temple qualified in medicine and Neurology in her native Kazakhstan before specializing in Acupuncture for over twenty years. Having recently settled in the UK she continued to practice acupuncture from two clinics in Surrey.

Her new business was developing steadily through word of mouth but Nadya wanted to create greater awareness and a professional image to attract more clients.

The brief

Nadya approached me to create a brand for her business that would acknowledge the Chinese heritage of the ancient medical technique whilst appearing fresh and modern. We decided to call the new brand ‘Tadworth Acupuncture’ to focus on the locality of the practice.

Logo design

I presented a range of logo concepts, exploring varying degrees of Chinese personality from overtly authentic symbolism to the more subtle influence. These were discussed with Nadya and we settled on a concept that was a western, modern symbol retaining a hint of its Chinese ‘dna’.

The chosen concept progressed to the design development stage where we went though a number of iterations – each time fine-tuning the weight and balance of the symbol and supporting typography – until it is perfectly balanced.

 

Website

The first step to creating a new website should not be design, but thorough planning. We spent time looking at competitors’ sites, discussed the amount of content, tone of voice and functionality before drawing up a site map to show number of pages and basic content.

Next came the design, (bespoke, rather than relying on pre-existing template) draft copy and photography. Because we had planned the project well we knew exactly what content to write and what images of Nadya working in her clinics were needed.

While images and copy were being prepared the website build was underway by one of my web developer partners, ensuring the site would be responsive for mobile devices as well as computers.

As soon as the build was complete we populated the site with final copy and images, carried out final testing and the site became live.

See the final website here. 

This is what Nadya’s business partner has to say about the Design process:

Nick provided us with the creation of a new brand design, which offered us benefits in several respects. It enabled us to provide a more customised and focussed image towards customers, it enabled us to take the detail and use for image improvement, such as placing the logo onto uniforms, and it provided the foundation for our website. This has raised awareness of our business, and our customers have generally commented positively on the result. So, I thank you Nick for your expertise and support.

Jeffrey Temple, Director Tadworth Acupuncture

 

Do you have a small or start-up business?

If you have a small or start-up business, consider getting help from a brand expert to make your brand stand out and give you an advantage over your competitors.

If you would like an informal chat would help, give me, Nick Ovenden, a call on 07876 293885 or 01737 819687 or email me.

 

 

Repositioning and Rebranding of the Bourne Club

When Martin Browne became President of the Bourne Club in Farnham, Surrey, he was on a mission to increase the membership of the Club. To do this he knew they needed to reposition and rebrand the club to bring it up to date. The  brand’s image needed to change in order to appeal to a younger and wider audience.

Time for a refreshed more relevant brand image

Martin assembled a committee of members to manage the rebrand work. I was invited to meet and guide them through the process. We started with an appraisal of the Club’s values and personality and went on to define exactly what the Club offers its members. From this in-depth review, I was able to create a logo and branding style and implement the new branding across signage and other marketing materials.

Personality and values

Together we took a long hard look at the current personality of the club and described the more positive qualities they wished to be associated with. This thinking was mapped out in a diagram which represents a ‘re-positioning’ of the brand from where they are today to where they wish to be tomorrow.

When looking at the values and personality of any organisation, it can be useful to note the negative values i.e. those that you definitely don’t wish to be associated with as well as the positive traits.

You can see how this was developed for the Bourne Club in the diagram below.

Defining the offer

With any brand, a verbal description of what the brand offers is crucial to its successful communication.

The Bourne Club is not just a tennis club. It has much to offer its members. However, passers-by could assume that it was just a badminton, tennis and squash club, which you can see in the original signboard below.

The activities that members can enjoy are much more than merely racquet sports. The club has a gym. Members can drop in to relax in the lounge and enjoy a coffee and a chat. Bridge nights are very popular and there are regular social activities such as dances, comedy nights and gin tastings.

I recommended the strap line, ‘Rackets, Fitness, Bridge, Social’ which sums up concisely what the club offers today. This was agreed upon before the logo design work started. However, to demonstrate how the strap line could be incorporated, I created a simple logo represented by a triangle with the words underneath.

Adding these four words was a significant change to the club’s original profile and broadens the offer from ‘just a tennis club’.

A modern image

To appeal to a younger audience, a contemporary look and feel was necessary.

The old multi-coloured logo is replaced with bold, legible lettering and vibrant green brand colour. The chosen logo acknowledges the origins as a tennis club, with a clever use of the letter B.
While looking carefully at the curved line on a tennis ball, at a certain angle I saw the curve form a hint of the letter ‘B’. And that was the inspiration for the logo!

After much refinement, experimentation, crafting and testing, the final developed logo was signed off by the committee and the Bourne Club now has a suite of logo versions; centred, horizontal and stacked, suitable for a wide variety of applications across digital, print and signage.

The Bourne Club is delighted with its new branding, which was launched in 2017 and continues to be implemented.

This is what Martin has to say about his results of the rebrand:
“Nick came up with a design that reflects the Club’s character as lively, inclusive and contemporary. The branding is very flexible and works brilliantly on signage, merchandise and digital marketing. The reaction from members has been enthusiastic and it has helped to promote the Club to the wider community”

Martin Browne President – Bourne Club

See more of Bourne Club brand design here

Bounce into the 21st Century

If you feel your brand no longer reflects your business as it is today, maybe we should talk.

Please do get in touch. You can call me on 07876 293885 or email me.

How well considered is your logo?

Cast your mind back to when you first created your logo. Can you remember the process you went through that led you to choose the final design?

If you’ve been reading my articles for a while, you will know that your brand is more than just your logo, but this is very often where it all begins.

Research and understanding

Well, that’s not quite true! Whilst the logo might be the first visual to your brand identity, there should be a considerable amount of research beforehand. Any designer worth their salt should be curious about your business. They should be nosey! Asking lots and lots of questions to get a deep understanding about the essence of your business and what’s important to you; your values, the types of customers you wish to attract and the value you provide through your products and services.

The research and understanding phase for brand design is crucial to give your designer a good understanding of the personality of your business as well as a clear design brief before the designer gets to sharpen their pencils.

Creative concepts

Let me give you an example. Having visited the site of Tadworth Tyres and spoken at length to Duncan, the Managing Director, I was able to really get under the skin of the business.

This allowed me to go away, reflect on the research, and use my creativity to translate what I had discovered into a selection of graphic ideas to represent the brand’s personality.

So the next time Duncan and I met, I was able to show him these four very different concepts and discuss which idea would most closely match the brand.

logo concepts

 

• The first design with the shield and EST: 1974 reflects the heritage of Tadworth Tyres: they’ve been around since 1974 and we discussed how important this aspect of the brand is to the business and for their customers.

• The second idea is a play on the initials of the business and the tread of the tyre. I didn’t want to deliver a clichéd design showing a literal representation of a tyre but I thought this was subtle.

• The third concept is in a more modern style, loosely representing a racing track, and this stimulated discussion about how we could position the brand away from the traditional tyre service image.

• The fourth, again a play on the initials, is exploring the opposite end of the spectrum to the first, ‘established’ concept with a modern feel.

After considering the range of ideas, the second concept was felt to fit the brand perfectly.

Design development

My next task was to spend time carefully crafting the idea into a finished design: making sure the colours were exactly right, the typography elegantly balanced and that we had enough versions of the logo to allow for use on signs, website, clothing and other applications.

It’s really important to spend time at this stage to ensure the logo will work as well on a website at thumbnail size as it will at supersize on the side of a building.

Here’s the final, fully developed logo design:

As you reflect on the process you went through when your logo was designed, I sincerely hope you had meaningful choices that weren’t just variations on a theme and that your final logo was beautifully crafted.

Brand Implementation

Once the design of the logo design has been finalised and signed off (some testing may be necessary at this stage), the next job is the implementation across all touch points that a prospect or customer has with the business.

Successful branding design is not about simply applying your logo to all communications material, signage, uniforms etc. It’s about carefully crafting everything with a consistent design style that repeatedly communicates your brand personality and engages with your customers.

Tadworth Tyres uniform
Tadworth Tyres embroidery detail
Tadworth Tyres fascia detail
Tadworth Tyres applied logo detail of exterior sign
Tadworth Tyres illuminated exterior branding
Tadworth Tyres showroom interior branding

Everything sings the same tune, in tune.  

This is what Duncan has to say about his experience of the branding process:

“Getting proper branding after being in business for forty years without, was a big deal for us. We couldn’t afford to get it wrong. Nick took time to understand what we are about and delivered a range of design options which all hit the spot in one way or another. With his help we chose the right one and it’s made a real difference to how staff and customers perceive the business now. Much more professional, and now we get noticed and remembered when people drive past!”

Duncan Hamilton, MD Tadworth Tyres.

 

With every brand I help create for a client, we are aiming to achieve a world where every aspect of their branding is something they are proud of.

Next time you see your logo, think to yourself, are you proud of your logo?

If not, maybe we should talk. Please do get in touch. You can call me on 07876 293885 or email me.

 

 

 

The best of 2017

The standout designs of last year.

2017 was a great year for me, one of my best in fact and I’d like to share some of the highlights with you.

I had the pleasure of working with some forward thinking business owners.
The result is they all now have strong branding to support their plans to grow their businesses over the coming year.

Tadworth Tyres

Reason for review: Move to a larger business premises.

Solution:  Creation of a new brand identity for Tadworth Tyres. Brand implementation across exterior signage, clothing, stationery and marketing material.

 

Find out more about this project.

 

Samsara

Reasons for review: Move to a larger retail premises and strategy to sell on-line.

Solution: Develop the Samsara brand across shop exterior and signage design and create a new E-commerce website.

Find out more about this project.

 

Qdos

Reason for design: Launch of the iPhone X, coinciding with the 10th anniversary of the iPhone

Solution: Design a special ‘celebration’ range of range of iPhone cases to appeal to purchasers of the iPhone 8 and X

 Find out more…  The the story of how we generated ideas for the iPhone cases from the design brief through to production.

 

Jacks Haircuts Soho

Reasons for review: The shop is in a basement and not visible to passing trade.

Solution: To create greater awareness of Jacks by using high quality photography from David Oliver and new heritage inspired branding.

Find out more about this project.

 

Bourne Club, Farnham

Reasons for review: The Club’s new president identified a problem with the old branding which was not appealing to new, younger members.

Solution: To create a recognisable brand marque that identifies the club as being a friendly, dynamic, young, sports and social club.

Find out more about this project

 

If this review of 2017 has prompted you to ask whether your brand reflects your business as you head for 2018, please give me a call on 07876 293885 or email me. I’d be glad to help you review your branding.

I wish you a very happy New Year everyone and all the very best for 2018.

Tilly Mint Weddings

My client had three specific design criteria for the creation of her luxury wedding shop brand:

The name– Tilly Mint, the colours – mint green and pink, and the store had to look at home in London, despite it’s location in Hampshire.

Exterior signage was created using specially formed letters finished in gold leaf (no other finish has quite the same effect) and bespoke oval swinging sign.

The brand design was implemented across everything from wrapping paper and carrier bags to price tickets and business cards.

Special edition phone cases for the Apple iPhone X

About Qdos

The tenth anniversary of the iPhone presented an opportunity that my client Qdos, couldn’t ignore.

Qdos creates smartphone accessories andhas an exciting range of cases, many of which I’ve had the pleasure of designing over the years.

The brief

Qdos wanted a range of designs that would celebrate the iPhone’s birthday.

The brief for the design for the new iPhone cases was that they must be clever, smart and aspirational.

The idea was that the proud owner of the new 8 and X would want to ‘dress’ their new phone with a special 10th anniversary cover.

Generating ideas

The Qdos team and I brainstormed some themes – Vintage, Evolution, Birthday and others and I returned to my studio to start work.

I covered as much ground as I could over the following week, taking inspiration from my all time design heroes Alan Fletcher and Milton Glaser.

Of course, during the fist presentation, a lot of the early designs went straight into the trash bin. But that’s not a problem; it’s the ideas we reject that make the rest the best!

The shortlist

Development of the shortlisted designs followed, chipping away and refining all the way to the production of final artwork.

Patience is a virtue

And then the waiting. For the factories in China to turn these ideas – ideas that start out as a scribble on a layout pad often at 10.45pm – into reality.

Taking pride in the end result

It’s quite a thrill to see these beautifully produced, tactile, little iPhone 7,8 and X cases, especially when customers get to purchase them! Perhaps you have one?

I’m proud of all the work I create for my clients, whether its a humble business card or a fully blown Brand Identity.

A good example of ‘engaging design, crafted with pride’.

See the range at the Qdos website