The situation is not uncommon. An entrepreneur succeeds beyond her wildest dreams and as the start-up sprints to keep up with day-to-day operations, the basic elements of good branding fall by the wayside until one day the entrepreneur realizes the initial – often amateur – visual identity is holding the firm back from realizing its full potential.
Boxhill came to Openform for a makeover. Our team recognized that the ecommerce powerhouse not only needed a fresh look for its brand and website, but needed to bring clarity to the underlying strategy which had suffered from mission creep, the lines blurring between the founder's personal life and the corporate entity. The urge to be all things to all customers was undermining the firm's core strengths.
We began by conducting basic customer research to identify key factors associated with the brand's equity and the competitive landscape. A SWOT analysis focused the brand story and gave us a field of defining elements. Once we articulated the brand strategy, the visual identity followed.
We initially pursued three rather different directions, each of which achieved the strategy but approached it with a different visual language. Through several rounds of refinement, we honed in on the look and feel that resonated most strongly with the founder's vision, and built out the visual language in color, media, and application. We overhauled the existing website without altering the underlying structure. We translated the identity to the tone and content of copy and website functionality, to ensure consistency of brand messaging, preparing brand guidelines and templates for employees to execute.
The result is a flexible and simple visual identity that connects the brand's historical origins in boxwood topiaries to the modern design of the products sold. Within weeks, the founder received unprompted accolades on how the new identity elevated the brand and website, bringing new enthusiasm to employees and vendor partnerships.