CereCore Foundational Branding
We kicked off the Foundational Branding project with a meeting to dive into discovery with our client. This is the phase where we get to sit down face to face with our client to get all of the details from them about who they are and how they want to be perceived, what challenges they face, who their competitors are, what their goals are, and more.
Our client’s passion for their work was apparent even during our early conversations, and this inspired us to create a foundation for the brand that would better frame this passion.
Our Foundational Branding project starts with discovery, so our team scheduled a meeting at HCA headquarters to dig into the existing brand. Our goal for the discovery session was to understand the organization’s operations, differentiators, challenges, opportunities, reasons for rebranding, values, and purpose.
From our pre-session research, we were able to glean that Parallon Technology Solutions provides EHR implementations, application support, IT help desk, IT managed services, technical staffing and strategic IT consulting services. They also provide hosting to hospitals, outpatient facilities, and large physician groups nationwide.
Their team of more than 450 clinical, financial and technical professionals has implemented EHR systems for more than 300 facilities. PTS offers remote support services and staffing services for all major EHR acute and ambulatory platforms as well as their ancillary applications.
It all seemed pretty complex in nature, but standard in terms of how they stacked up to their competitors.
However, throughout our discovery session, we realized that PTS has a huge impact on patient care. Their efficiency in implementation and support for their systems leads to ease of use for physicians and caregivers, creating better outcomes for patients and a better bottom line for the organization as a whole.
We learned that the company has an operator heritage, which means that they were founded by and are currently led by a team of people who have actually operated healthcare facilities. So, when their clients encounter issues with their EHR systems, the PTS team knows exactly what’s happening and how to solve the problems.
Additionally, we discovered that our clients have a true passion for healthcare. They do what they do because people benefit from their tech solutions in a way that’s actually life-saving.
Finally, we came to learn that they are super-resilient. They don’t ever give up, and once they give their word to a client, you can count on them coming through. Where other organizations may throw in the towel on a difficult project, the PTS team steps up.
Based on our discovery findings, we created a list of attributes that would properly describe the company in a manner that differentiated them from their competition. During our Foundational Branding exercise, it’s imperative that we pare down the attributes to a set of adjectives that can guide the development of verbiage related to the brand, as well as the company’s actions.
We set out on this quest by throwing a bunch of thoughts against the wall. From there, we work to really hone in on what’s really true, what makes the company different, and why anyone should care.
Then, we get to work defining each of the attributes. This doesn’t mean that we look the word up and see what Webster has to say. Rather, here we are creating definitions that explain what each word means to the organization specifically.
The positioning statement for an organization is one of the most important elements of the brand. The possible most important application for this statement is that it equips your team with the words necessary to be able to speak about your firm, the work you do, who you serve, and why you matter.
For Parallon, one of the most important aspects of the Foundational Branding exercise was to position them in the market in a manner that set them apart from sister company, Parallon Business Solutions.
With the brand attributes and positioning in place, we set about to create various visual direction options that can convey the brand through imagery.
As part of our Foundational Branding project, we present up to three distinct brand direction options. This allows our clients to envision the various visual directions that the brand can take, and to weigh in on which of the options will work best for them. Each of the brand boards we create are viable directions, so whichever is selected will start the brand off on the right foot.
The first brand board was graphic and bold with modern colors washing over imagery that inspire forward motion. Patterns are present to bring order to white space, and floods of blue reinforce the modern, tech feel with an underlying nod to honesty and trustworthiness. In this visual direction, interest would come in through gradients and the blue hues would range from a deep navy to a bright teal.
The second brand board took on a typographic approach with a big, bold, modern sans serif font in a bright white on top of floods of green, purple, or black. Negative space would come in to indicate the thought and strategy that takes place between bursts of implementation and support. Patterns and icons would be utilized to direct the user experience throughout the brand.
We created a third visual direction for that also encompassed the brand attributes. The board was populated with bright blues to convey knowledge and reliability and yellows to communicate confidence, pride, and happiness in what they do. Imagery nodded to the flexible solutions provided by the organization, and modern clean lines denote the knowledge and technical aspect of the business. Intertwining and overlapping colors showcase the connection between PTS and their clients, followed by forward movement and life-saving innovation.
We scheduled a presentation and met our clients at their offices to review the options for visual direction, and to present to them their attributes and positioning statement.
Getting buy in from key stakeholders is crucial, and we don’t leave the communication of our vision up to any one person in the client’s organization. Rather, we like for the CEO and Directors, along with the team that will implement the brand on the front lines to be able to hear it from us directly.
The three brand directions were distinctly different, but all conveyed the same position and attributes. Ultimately, our client selected the third brand direction, and we were able to move forward in the branding project with naming, logo development, website design, stationery design, marketing materials design, and a strategy for brand launch communication.