April 18, 2017
Gen/X Painting: Creating a Brand That Builds Business
Gen/X Painting had every excuse to fly under the radar. Building a high-quality brand isn’t the norm in the residential painting industry. It’s more common to get contract jobs here and there, get your name out there, and hope that business grows via referrals rather than a strong online presence.
Joas Meier, founder and president of Gen/X Painting, decided he would do things differently.
Agency Media partnered with Joas to build the Gen/X brand from the ground up. We created a logo, brand standards, business cards, and a website to accompany the official launch of Gen/X Painting. Only 3 months after starting his business, Joas is getting so much work, he’s finding it difficult to keep up.
The 3-Second Impression
It’s difficult to be known for quality when your company hasn’t been around for very long. Even though Joas himself had a lot of experience in painting and finishing, he needed his visual brand to convey his expertise and his vision for quality rather than simply telling potential clients, “Hey, I’ve been doing this for a long time.”
Joas approached Agency Media to build a brand that communicated quality. He was attracted to the fact that we were an all-in-one agency. “I could use you guys for everything in my company.” From branding and website design to logos designed specifically for his social media feed, he was attracted to Agency Media because we could work on every aspect of his marketing.
So Joas brought his problem to us. “Most people will say that within the first 3 seconds they judge you already from just your appearance,” said Joas. Gen/X needed an appearance that left an impression of quality after that 3-second glance.
A Different Kind of Foundation
The first step in bringing this brand to life was meeting with Joas to discover his vision and goals for the brand. He brought us a name, Gen/X Painting, and a tagline, The Next Generation of Quality. Through our initial talks, we all agreed that this brand needed to be consistent. If Gen/X wanted to be known for quality, the brand needed to intentionally communicate quality on every platform.
According to Joas, this is where most professional painting companies fall short. “The first thing I noticed was websites. Nobody has a professional website at all, it looks like homemade stuff . . . Everything I want to do for this company is to be different.”
Razia Daudjee, our graphic designer who created the Gen/X logo, said, “[Joas] wanted a brand that reflected his growing business yet set him apart from other similar businesses. I think meeting the client goals came down to really understanding his business and shedding light on the client’s amazing portfolio of reno and painting work.”
We wanted Joas to trust us with his project and needed him to understand that we would respect his decisions. By opening up our office and getting to know him, we were able to foster a community of trust. Joas commented that our office environment was a big part of establishing trust. “It’s the environment too and everything of your guys’ place. It kind of sets that trust.”
After the project finished, Brianna Reid, one of our web designers and developers, said, “I truly believe this project came together as well as it did because the client was willing to put the whole project in our hands.” We take trust seriously.
A Brand in Process
The first step in creating Gen/X’s assets was designing a logo.
While Raz was designing the logo, she was inspired by the idea of superior quality. “The overall concept explored in this phase was the idea of better home.” In order to rise above the rest, this logo needed to stand out. Yet, she found the slash, the Gen and the X a little difficult to work with. “In the beginning, it felt like it had too many elements,” but after some effort these elements made the logo into what it became, “The forward slash became the main visual for the brand symbolizing a brushstroke but it also worked because it created a strong type based logo with the main characters G, X and /.”
Once the logo was created we were able to create designs for business cards and send the image file to Joas to use on t-shirts, social media profiles, and eventually truck wraps.
Next was the website. Brianna Reid led the team on designing and developing Gen/X’s online hub. Since Gen/X doesn’t have a lengthy catalogue of services, they didn’t need a massive website. Brianna designed a few unique pages and interactions that would lead the user to request a quote. While it needed to be simple, it still needed to communicate quality.
“Sometimes when a client says they want an elegant or contemporary website,” said Brianna, “it can be a vague direction. Some people think of Apple as being contemporary, others think of Tiffany & Co, so it can sometimes be hard to differentiate. I was able to take the portfolio of the client’s work to really determine which route the project should take.”
While the website was underway, Thom Peters, a copywriter at Agency Media, worked with Joas to write the content for the website. Joas provided Thom with the basic information to put on the site and Thom took that information to communicate the reliability and excellence that Joas wanted.
Joas’ goal was to launch by Christmas 2016. We were able to make his website live by late November and gather other brand assets by early December. The next step was to wait and see how his business would be impacted by this new brand.
A Brand That Builds Business
Three months after the launch of Joas’ brand, business seemed booming on Instagram. People were getting hired, his work reflected the high-end aesthetic that he wanted, and he seemed to be working on a new job almost every day. But, Instagram doesn’t always reflect reality. We decided to bring Joas in for an official debrief.
This time, Instagram was reflecting reality. “It’s been 3 months now and after those 3 months it’s going to be probably another month and I’ll be hitting what I did in one year last year revenue-wise.” Business was going far better than Joas could’ve imagined.
Joas knows for certain that some of this new work is due to his company’s web and graphic design. One customer told Joas outright that he chose Gen/X because of their website. “He looked at all the websites,” said Joas, “and he liked mine.”
The client’s journey usually includes a few stops. A potential customer may be drawn in by Gen/X’s logo, how simple it is to request a quote, or maybe by Joas’ friendly voice on the other end of the call. But, usually it’s a combination of all three. Our job is to enhance each step and build the customer’s affinity to the brand along the way.
We love working with small businesses, like Gen/X, to add real value in the form of design, web, video, and social. With all of our work, our goal is to create content that grows business.
Interested in learning more? Contact us.