Swinging For The Fences
isoBLOX presented Signal Factory with an intriguing problem. How do you take a company that has an incredible and proprietary protection technology and make it attractive to athletes? With many years and lots money already invested, the isoBLOX team tasked us with two very important directives:
- Get retail partners to carry the product.
- Wow consumers.
…all centered around a single product: protective baseball batting gloves. (Yes, we used football imagery instead. This was merely for pitch purposes.) The solution first needed an overhauled packaging solution. And second, a concept for an end cap “protection center” that fit a typical sporting goods retail model.
So, before doing a single logo design or concept meeting, we focused on researching and surveying the market for such a product. We found quite a few interesting things that isoBLOX’s competitors had in common. We also found an intriguing little gap in the market that we felt isoBLOX could exploit – namely in color. While Nike, Under Armour, and EVOShield had all laid claim to different color spaces, they had conveniently left the orange space vacant.
The branding solution from that point was simple – take the best things the major brands were already doing (aggressive brand imagery that leaned heavily on action-based photos) and combine that with a heavy emphasis on the differentiating factor (proprietary technology) in a unique color space.
It's All About Positioning
While the primary goals of the proposal were not centered around a re-brand, the isoBLOX team indicated they wouldn’t be opposed to seeing something new. Of course, we took the opportunity to simply mock up a quick idea that would fall more in line with the visual language we were proposing for the packaging and retail display objectives.
Oh. And when the word “blox” is in the name of the product… don’t fight it. Just embrace it. Go with a strong slab serif type system and lean into the square nature of it. You’ll save hours of time, trust me.
Baseball? Football? Just Make It Cool
Alas, the rebranding was ultimately never able to get off the ground. Sometimes economics simply trumps strategy. While the creative and overall positioning strategy had incredible buy in from executives at every level, the numbers just didn’t add up. Even though we’d gone above and beyond, in the end, a full rebrand was just too expensive – pulling skews from stores, adjusting manufacturing schedules, etc.
But if that’s going to be the case, at least you can take solace when the board lets you know that they wished they’d engaged you sooner.