Having worked with Unisono previously i knew working with them on our rebrand would be a sure fired success. They're experts whose strategic process leads directly to engaging, insightful creative work.Rob Groombridge
Award winning brand and digital work
This project picked up awards in two categories at Transform MENA 2016, winning one for Best Rebrand of a Digital Property, Best Naming Strategy and the highly coveted Best Identity from the Financial Services Sector.
The UAE is a quickly developing market where key players like MAF Finance are consolidating their position through the innovation of self-sustaining services which maintain value within the their corporate ecosystems. With innovative new financial brands coming to market, including entrants in the mall card business such as You Got A Gift, MAF Finance needed to act; it created a competitive product that it could use to retain greater value within its group while also providing it with a key growth opportunity in financial services. To give this brand a voice we created an eCommerce Branding solution called Premo.
Challenges for the brand design team
The current Mall Gift Card brand was not performing in terms of sales or customer engagement. The name was utilitarian but also represented a closed market – it could not offer products other than cards for MAF’s malls. The ecommerce branding had no direction due to a lack of strategy and vision while the visual identity had no discernible sense of self. We needed to create an ecommerce branding solution which could sit in the MAF family, be distinctive yet different and capture hearts as well as minds.
Strategic ecommerce branding
Premo needs to sit within the framework of MAFs mall and corporate brands. We researched the principles underpinning these and concluded that both shared key considerations – they we about enabling people to ‘enjoy great moments, together’. The key reasons for people engaging with prepaid brands was two fold – ‘the convenience of prepaid’ and ‘easy online gifting’; with the latter having a stronger emotional foundation on which to build a brand.
We created a new proposition statement: ‘We believe in the ‘power of prepaid’ to help you create safe and enjoyable retail experiences for you and the people in your life’ to which all development work would align. The core philosophy of the ecommerce branding solution started with an empowering vision ‘To empower safe & enjoyable retail experiences’ and three values ‘Dynamic’, ‘Inspiring’ and ‘Simple’ which we felt would best support the new culture of the brand. Finally we worked on a deliverable promise ‘to make prepaid simply enjoyable’ that we could use as a guide for all aspects of the brand’s customer interaction.
Before we could work on the identity for the ecommerce branding solution we had to establish a usable and inspiring name. We had several key candidates but nothing summed up the offer as well as Premo. The name is a portmanteau of ‘Prepaid’ and ‘Primo’ – enabling us to set up shop as the ‘first name in prepaid’.
A strategic response to the visual identity requirements
With a highly own-able name we set to work on a visual identity that could take the top of mind position in the prepaid card market. While we had to employ the ‘M’ device from MAF corporation we were free to work around this in all other areas. We created a unique ‘M’ which is filled with ‘cards in free flow’ – as if MAF was a portal to the prepaid card universe. Added to this is a unique typographic mark to conjure friendly feelings aligned to the brand’s vision ‘To empower safe & enjoyable retail experiences’.
As well as the logo, we created new typographic standards, a new softer and a friendlier colour scheme and a new visual asset that represented the ‘free flow of prepaid’. This visual asset can be broken apart and reapplied in various configurations. Finally the identity co-opts the lozenge shape of cards as its own identifier – setting the brand on course to be the first name in prepaid card purchases.
Strategy, Project Planning, Brand Identity, Graphic System, Retouching, Product Design, Print Design.
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