Brand consultancy Labbrand has unveiled a new brand identity including a refreshed brand signature as well as a new website experience, as it celebrates its 15th anniversary. According to the company, its new visual style is "the expression of the modern identity of the company", and represents its commitment to be "the guiding partner for brand innovations".
Labbrand's founder and CEO Vladimir Djurovic told MARKETING-INTERACTIVE that branding has changed substantially over the past few years, with many of the things individuals do these days being non-existent several years ago. "We need a visual identity that can reflect the modern identity of Labbrand," he said, adding that the team looked back on its history and analysed what it has learnt in the past 15 years.
The brand refresh was in the works for almost a year. From the initial ideation to the modification of the idea and to the final application of the design, Djurovic said the team has spent a huge amount of time and effort on it, and eventually created the brand identity that can best represent the Labbrand values.
An inspiration for its visual identity came from Djurovic's childhood memory, which involved a recurring dream of rolling on a hilly virtual space that is very close to the visual universe that Labbrand's designer proposed in one of the directions. "This is when I felt that the designers have been able to reflect a very personal imagination, and also that my subconscious has impregnated the brand I have been building all along these 15 years. It was a moment of realisation of my team’s passion to build brand ideas to life, and a moment of pride that we could do the same for our clients," he explained.
The design's creative concept aims to offer an immersive experience to a journey depicting the Labbrand universe, a place in which the viewers can experience and comprehend the depth and beauty of the culture embedded in words, ideas, visuals and expressions, the company said. At the same time, its new design language seeks to be contemporary yet powerful by applying vibrant and bold colours together with the contrast of shape, lights, texture and scale.
According to Labbrand, doing so portrays a dream-like universe that projects the core value and vision of Labbrand. Its clean shapes and lines seek to bring an easy understanding of Labbrand's universe and inspire the viewer with innovative ideas that empower brands. Meanwhile, Labbrand said its new signature expresses openness and strength of character. The "L" shape represents Labbrand and the land it stands on.
Inspired by the perspective seen from the binocular, the blue arrow symbolises "a visionary guiding partner leading brands through the unexpected journey of brand innovation" and explores the possibilities to impact the world. Another inspiration for the signature design comes from Labbrand's analysis model known as 4 Facets. The signature can be transformed into four different configurations, representing the four pillars in Labbrand. According to the company, this is also a symbolisation of its nimble and agile character.
As for its website, it features an easy-to-navigate interface with clear, strong messaging, showcasing its work across its services of naming, research, strategy, and design. Labbrand was founded in Shanghai in 2005 and has since expanded into Singapore, New York, Vancouver, and Paris. In 2019, Labbrand Group was established comprising Labbrand, digital brand consultancy MADJOR, and cultural transformation agency SpringPillar. Last year, it brought on board Jessalynn Chen as MD, Singapore to lead and develop the regional Labbrand office.
Converting all assets was not an easy task and Djurovic said the amount of time and effort spent on the process was immense. Labbrand's corporate branding and creative teams worked closely together to update all the assets, from stationery to visual elements of online touchpoints.
"Brand rejuvenation is a big decision. We are certainly looking for more than just the visual upgrade. Our brand value proposition, brand messaging, brand tagline and manifesto are all part of the rejuvenation," Djurovic said. According to him, the company always embraces new tools to enhance the engagement with its clients and audience through different channels. It believes a consistent brand visual and messaging with the force of right brand methods are key for accelerating the growth and sustaining the results for Labbrand.
On his vision for 2021, Djurovic said the company seeks "to federate [it] as a community around [its] belief together with [its] clients and partners to guide them through the branding journey. "At Labbrand, we believe ideas are powerful. Branding brings ideas to life and optimise the impact," he added.
Three trends brands should note in their marketing strategy
Being eco-powered is the next big trend, according to Djurovic, who said sustainability is today as big a disruptor as digitalisation was 20 years ago. Like 20 years ago, if some companies are eco-responsible natives, most companies are eco-responsible immigrants. "Eco-immigrating is challenging, but also full of opportunities for those who can seize the momentum. Being eco-powered is not only adapted or constrained to be more eco-responsible, but to be enhanced and reinforced by it," he explained.
Additionally, UX will play a big role in 2021. The past year has no doubt brought huge change to marketing and advertising, with homes becoming hubs for people, and online living becoming a lifestyle by no choice, Djurovic said. Given that, the experience from each online touchpoint of a brand becomes extremely crucial. According to him, UX is essentially a dynamic improvement of usability, responsiveness, efficiency, aesthetics and interactions in order to satisfy users in the most possibly pleasing way.
"When we talk about UX, we are looking at how to cultivate the understanding and empathy for end-users in order to drive and inspire design and technology choices. UX is a critical factor to foster brand-to-customer relationships throughout time hence requiring an on-going effort," Djurovic added.
Lastly, diversity and inclusion has become more important than ever. It is not just gender, race, age, and other demographic information, but also whether the brand message and brand culture can allow the diversity to sustain and eventually drive positive social change, he said.