Branding for start-ups: branding programs where the esencial is the important part
Numerous newly established companies are facing the dilemma of their needs to build a solid brand and resources that are clearly insufficient to achieve these goals at once. It’s time to prioritize. And in that situation, a question arises: what do I really need to start? This was the exact point in which two entrepreneurs from Madrid were: a good idea, a good business plan, a clear strategy and the need for a customized branding program. As with other start-ups, Fandom aligned that branding program with its direct and scalable needs in order to start a business project with all the guarantees.
What eventually ended up being called Stay & Joy is an innovative business project focused on serving executives of multinationals who have to travel to Spain to work. So far there are a large number of companies that are dedicated to manage the relocation of expatriates very focused on the bureaucracy or the real estate sector. The differential factor of this project was the attention to intangibles and an exhaustive method focused on minimizing the premature returns of executives, which represents a very high cost for many large companies.
NAMING: A NAME IN LINE WITH THE DESIRED BRAND POSITIONING
The business strategy of the project should be reflected in the brand from the start. For this, Fandom carried out an investigation with the objective of determining the values that the brand should have and detailing the desired brand positioning and the real possibilities of achieving it. A differentiation in positive with respect to the competition was established as axis of the brand strategy, highlighting a cheerful and carefree tone (instead of the seriousness and formality of a sector very focused on bureaucracy and real estate) and speeches oriented to an effective and solvent method.
The Stay & Joy case is very clear about the difference between brand users and consumers. In many situations it is the same, but there are projects that must consider as independent agents the users (those who make use of a brand) and the consumers (those who buy what the brand offers).
They are those that benefit from everything a brand offers, enjoy it and even recommend it, but they are not necessarily those that decide on the purchase or contracting of a product or service. In the case of Stay & Joy, the users are expatriates, who are not the ones who decide to hire Stay & Joy.
They are those that have the ability to decide on the choice between one brand and another. In the case of Stay & Joy the multinational companies are the ones that determine which relocation agency they hire to serve their expatriate workers. If it is the worker who directly decides the hiring of the relocation agency, then there would be a consumer and a brand user.
The name chosen was finally Stay & Joy. The recurring terms of this type of service do not necessarily have a positive connotation: expats, expatriates, relocation … It was decided to highlight the most outstanding aspects of the service, that positive spirit, in addition to the basic opportunities that every name should take advantage of: availability (domain free, unregistered mark, etc.), sound (easy pronunciation, memorability, etc.), universality (that can be used in different countries, cultures and languages) and focus (that fits the purpose / mission of the brand).
BRAND IDENTITY: DEFINITION TO TAKE IMPULSE
In the line of adjusting the brand building tasks to the most urgent needs of Stay & Joy, Fandom prioritized the definition of a simple and solid visual identity that, in the future, would allow more complex developments, but in the first phase of the birth of the company would allow the brand to operate autonomously and serve all the communicative needs of the project.
The logo was designed based on the inspiration of the analogue information panels of airports and train stations with their vertical swing cells and their characteristic “click-clack” sound. For Stay & Joy, a grid of eight cells was arranged, divided by an horizontal line, as is perceived in the known “flip panels” with its “split-flat” mechanism. With the incorporation of Fandom colors, we were looking to enhance the positive feelings that this brand intends to associate with its relocation service for foreigners.
One of the main games that allowed the logo was its ability to generate animations for digital media. A simple motion graphics was developed to give the logo the same movements and mechanisms as the analogue information panels of the airports that inspired its creation. The content that “hides” behind the typographic part is a rich iconography related to the services and experiences of the new brand.
The developments of the logo initially focused on a simple corporate stationery and very adjusted to the resources of the new company. For example, one of the aspects that are not usually taken into account in the development of corporate stationery is the possibility of reproducing designs designed by professionals printers with printers at home or at the office. The pragmatic character had to be the important part, once again, of all the developments on the visual identity of Stay & Joy.
WEB AND PRESENTATION
One of the crucial aspects of any startup is to define and adjust its main sales channels as soon as possible. The arrival of income is usually an emergency that can determine the survival of a newly created company. That is why, in the case of Stay & Joy, the development of a website and a presentation that would allow the relocation agency to start its commercial activity as soon as possible was set as a priority. Both the web and the presentation involved an exercise in identity construction ongoing, taking decisions on the spot and implementing design and concept developments that also had to make sense through the whole brand and in its future developments. The flexibility and adaptability of these two tools were also aspects to take into account, as it is mandatory for any brand that is born and that will suffer many adjustments in the short term. The design of the web, built on WordPress, started from the bases that were fixed in the design of the commercial presentation, from grids, the content and minimalist use of the brand colors and a visual system enriched with large format photographs that generate positive and very localized evocations in Madrid, headquarters of the company and strong point of the relocations in Spain.
The immediate success of the branding program developed by Fandom for Stay & Joy, unlike other cases, was measured by the speed with which this brand was able to compete with other players in its sector. In just three months of work, Fandom gave this startup basic tools to build its brand: from a sound and differentiating name to a commercial presentation with a solid discourse accompanied by a very recognizable identity.