The Agency created SHOP!, a new brand identity and marketing position for two newly-merged global retail associations: the Association for Retail Environments (A.R.E.) and Point of Purchase Advertising International (POPAI). The two associations together represent more than 2,000 worldwide retail members.
Two like-minded global retail associations, Association for Retail Environments (A.R.E.) and Point of Purchase Advertising International (POPAI), merged to represent more than 2,000 member companies worldwide. The merger faced huge branding challenges. First, both of the organizations had passionate memberships that were extremely loyal to their previous brand identities. Secondly, POPAI had a global membership that ran autonomous licensed organizations in Paris, China, France, and the UK. Finally, the two organizations had a myriad of global entities, programs, and events. How would the two groups create a new, unified global branding framework that would create validity and inspire stakeholder confidence?
After an extensive global agency search, Rockit Science was selected to rebrand and reposition the newly merged organization. The Agency attended strategic planning sessions in Chicago and Las Vegas, and participated remotely on global conference calls. The Agency believed that in order to elevate the new association, the brand must move beyond an acronym and select nomenclature that was insightful, representative, and transparent to the association’s world. Extensive quantitative and qualitative research and brand testing was completed via intercept studies, focus groups, and digital surveys. The Agency evolved the brand and shaped the future for membership through carefully selected indicators that represented the brand voice. The Agency created a brand that moved smoothly past perceived differences and placed membership in an egalitarian setting (represented in a mark and brand voice). Through solid research and a proven design process, the Agency brought harmony out of chaos in a fresh way that stakeholders responded positively to.
We explored Union Model theory in the creative process of working to rebrand the new organization. The overlay represents two groups coming together to form one. It is this shared space that finally illuminates the common mission of service to their membership.
With the successful rollout of its newly merged brand, SHOP! has seen significant membership growth across the United States. International SHOP! affiliate entities will transition to the new brand identity with various adjustments for social and cultural nuances.
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