Using Design Thinking to Understand Your Brand Essence

As humans, we all have our own unique story. Every mistake made, lesson learned and achievement gained came from a journey that has allowed us to land where we have today. Those journeys, exciting, adventurous, and, at times totally exhausting, are what build the details of our one-of-a-kind stories that can’t be replicated or edited by ourselves or anybody else. They’re our ever-growing foundation that reminds us where we came from while simultaneously influencing our direction forward.

Like people, organizations experience their own unique journey that builds their foundation. Of course elements like heritage and perspective have a major role in developing a journey, but one of the most critical elements is the people. Every employee, from labor workers to leadership, has a part in creating a culture that’s integral in influencing an organization’s story. At Intrinzic, we believe successful collaborative brands not only know and value their unique story, but also communicate content that evokes emotions consistent to the subject matter, while resonating and inspiring their audience. The process of creating visuals and messaging that does this successfully is a journey in and of itself. It can be easy to get caught in the whirlwind of inspiration and ideas, but at the end of the day, content must represent the company in an authentic way. To do so, it has to represent the people whose passion has made an impact on that organization’s culture.

The process for creating a compelling campaign for Construction Safety Week 2018 was no different. Unlike most clients we work with, Construction Safety Week is an organization made up of 80+ companies across the construction industry to spread awareness of safety on and off job sites. Intrinzic was tasked with developing creative solutions to expand awareness and engagement among key audiences, including the craft and labor force and industry experts, across the industry. With such a wide audience reach, we had to have a campaign story that resonated and inspired everyone. We discovered that every choice made on and off the job site, from the big to the small, has an impact that extends further than the job sites and corporations. With this in mind, Intrinzic developed “The Power of Safe Choices” theme for 2018.

After aligning on the overall story, the next step in the Design Thinking Process was to create the visual look and feel for the campaign that would contribute to inspiring engagement across a large audience. Digging deeper in the process, we broke the deliverables into three main buckets to allow us to think through the campaign as a visual system. The campaign mark, the overall key visual, or look and feel of the campaign, and the event tactics that launched the event all followed a similar process of inspiration, sketching and digital design.

Seeking inspiration is one of my favorite phases of the design process. What’s not to love about exploring beautiful work and pushing creativity? Even if I think I’m looking for a specific solution, more times than not I’m inspired by something totally unexpected, which takes my design in a completely different direction. For the campaign mark, I was inspired by the idea of directional elements coming together to create a focal point representing how every individual’s choice has an impact on those around them. While a range of abstract to literal designs was conceptualized, the final direction was in-between the two. The final mark with two directional arrows coming together to form an “S” demonstrated how these individual choices or directions ultimately have a bigger impact and create a greater picture.

Developed from the campaign mark and the already established Safety Week branding consisting of angular graphics and a construction, vibrant green, two key visuals were conceptualized to highlight the campaign theme of “The Power of Safe Choices.” Inspired by the idea of one person’s choice having a ripple affect, I chose a close cropped photography style highlighting a safety choice made by those in the industry paired with a zoomed out view of the bigger picture. This photography tells a rich story of how one person’s choice affects the lives of the the people around them. Color overlays were added for depth and to represent the transparency in recognizing the opportunities and challenges construction employees face, but speak up to overcome.

Once the overall campaign look and feel was established, a series of event tactics were conceptualized and designed to help engage those in the industry. We were inspired by the safety stories we heard and wondered why not share them with the world? After all, those working day in and day out to construct our schools, streets and offices knew “The Power of Safe Choices” better than anyone else. To execute this, we asked employees in the industry, from craft workers to industry experts, to tell the world why they pledged safe choices and to post their pledge to social media with the hash tag #SafetyWeek. These posts were then integrated into an interactive digital mosaic that visually demonstrated how every individual choice affects the greater picture. To further engage the media, a direct mail package was deployed to provide them with all of the details of the week and why spreading the word was essential.

The results of this year’s campaign were impressive. We reached more than 370,000 people on social media and shared our message more than 292,000,000 times (yes, that’s 292 MILLION!). While the data labeled this campaign a success, the most valuable identifier was confirming the campaign was rooted in the passion of the people it truly affects. Taking the time to really know our audience and to let them tell their individual stories was the big differentiator. After all, they are the one’s who build the construction industry and create the culture at their respective construction companies.


To learn more about our approach and deliverables for Construction Safety Week 2018, view the case study here.