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Reflecting on the AppDirect Rebrand

What’s in a name? For companies, it’s almost always a logo. Just as Nike has its swoosh and Facebook has its stylized F, some images become iconic representations of a company and its products, values, and vision. AppDirect recently set out to redefine its brand in a similar way. To learn more about the branding process, I sat down with AppDirect’s Creative Director, Ben Domanico, to discuss the company’s new identity and what it means.

Why did AppDirect need to be rebranded? 

Ben: Before the rebrand, we were primarily defined by our name, “AppDirect”—a hybrid word that accurately embodies the way we seek to connect two singular entities. As a company whose vision prides itself heavily on collaboration, we came to the realization that though the word AppDirect embodied our values, we needed a recognizable image for our employees and customers to connect to.

What sort of collaboration did the decision involve?

Ben: Because of the importance of nailing the imagery, we created a multi-month think tank. A brand is not as simple as a definition through imagery. It's a form of communication that draws from the experiences of employees, customers, and newfound discoverers of the AppDirect vision, so a collaborative feel is definitely what we wanted to create.

We ended up seeking the assistance of a company called Tolleson who highly valued all three of those variables, and after much idea bouncing, collaboration, and many permutations, we finally settled on the triangular image that is now available on all AppDirect products.

Why did you decide to go with the new, triangular logo, and what makes it so unique?

Ben: The answer ultimately rests in the eye of the beholder, but we've drawn from two different sources and their synthesis: Pascal’s triangle and the Golden Ratio. The Golden Ratio is a ubiquitous, subterranean equation found throughout nature. It can be seen in the sparkle of a waterfall, or the twist of a conch shell. It is the hidden beauty that runs arterially throughout the earth. It’s certainly metaphorical, and that’s what we’re trying to create. We really want the brand to be bigger than the sum of it's parts; to create something bigger than itself.

How did you know the time was right for a rebrand?

Ben: Though we had known it needed to happen for a while, any type of brand modification is a decision that carries a lot of weight. People hear the word "rebrand" and they immediately think overhaul, so when it came to our initial branding efforts, we really wanted to get it right.

When we unveiled our new branding, it truly felt like a maturation—the tangible result of the "how far we've come" mentality that had started to permeate the office prior to the decision. It seemed like a long time coming, even though it really wasn’t. That's why the new branding is so exciting—it feels like a reward. If timing is everything, it really was perfect.

How has the rebrand affected the company?

Ben: What's become apparent since the unveiling is the pride every member of AppDirect feels in the brand. Everyone approaches the logo with a high degree of stewardship, and have made the branding into something that is entirely ours. With a group of such talented, driven employees, we knew the branding transition had the capacity to be easy, powerful, and fun. From the design side, we provided everyone the tools to make the rebrand as seamless as possible, and the direction people took it in could not have been more positive.

The new AppDirect branding is in the process of being introduced across the company and its products. You can currently find it on the AppDirect website, and it will soon be rolled out across the AppDirect marketplace.

Calum Beedling is a marketing associate at AppDirect.

Posted by Calum Beedling on Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

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