Over our 8 years in business, we have grown significantly. What started as a one person business, then grew to a small two man operation working on sites out of friends’ offices, is now a fully fledged web development agency right in the centre of Edinburgh.
We wanted to create a brand that reflected where we came from, who we are now, as well as allow us to keep growing.
With that in mind, we first had to identify the issues with our current brand. To do this, we ran an internal Discovery Workshop. This is something we do with a lot of our clients, and it’s really useful in determining what the client’s goals/ambitions are as well as who their user groups are and what those users need. Every project is different, but over our years in practise we have developed an outline of exercises and questions that we feel can pinpoint the information we need from our client in order to get started building their website.
We found our own Discovery Workshop extremely useful, and identified the main areas in which our brand was not currently reflecting our business goals and values. We also realised that we needed to take a second look at our values, as although those were values we still believed in and upheld, they were not proactive in creating the brand that we wanted to now reflect. And so, after some brainstorming exercises, we now have our new values – Authenticity, Progression and Originality.
When we started looking at our key users, we soon discovered that we actually weren’t communicating with them in a helpful and engaging way – we used rather ‘vanilla’ business language, we didn’t show off any of our personality (or team members!) and didn’t showcase our expert knowledge or skill set. These were all things that we discovered were needed by our key users. In order to build up a sense of trust with our users, they needed to get to know us, to see our lovely faces and read about us and our process. We also needed to show off our knowledge and capability, so that our users feel confident that we can handle their project. Showing case studies is fine, but perhaps don’t speak to our users directly. But proving to them that we are up to date on our content and social media, that we are heavily involved in our local WordPress communities and that we speak at events and conferences, goes a long way to gaining our users’ trust.
With all of this data drawn out of our Discovery Workshop, it was now time to get creative!
Using our new brand values as a base point, and keeping our key users in mind, we began exploring some logo options. One of the challenges we came up against when looking at the logo was the required versatility. We have various forms of outdoor and interior signage within our studio at The Breakfast Mission, each one a different size and shape, and so we needed a logo that could work across all of these plus our printed and digital material. To do this, we looked at current logos which have a sense of movement, that are fluid or can be changed in some way. From that, we made the decision to separate the ‘Design’ from ‘33’ which then gave us a lot more flexibility.
Once the logo had been designed, we then established a set of colours, brand typefaces and graphic elements – our new brand guidelines!
Now that we had a solid set of guidelines to work from, we were able to roll-out our new brand across everything we needed – signage, t-shirts, pens, business cards, etc. And then finally, our website (the coolest part in our opinion!) From our Discovery Workshop, we had already established some key functionalities and content that we knew our users required from us, so we had a blueprint of sorts to work with. Playing with the look and feel of the site was really fun for us. To not only incorporate our new typefaces and colours, but to watch our language change, our whole visual identity, and showcase our work and culture in a way that we know reflects who Design33 are.
We are WordPress experts. We build honest, helpful and engaging relationships with all of our clients. We have a straight-talking yet capable attitude. We believe in authenticity and progression. We are the re-branded, Design33!