LeanOnWe Brand Identity
LeanOnWe, a home care startup that matches careseekers with carefully vetted caregivers, needed a brand identity that would provide the basis for all visual design moving forward and distinguish LeanOnWe from the competition. As the lead brand architect on this project, I designed and wrote a comprehensive style guide that distilled LeanOnWe’s ethos and values into visual elements that could be reused across all of their properties.
Role: Lead Visual Designer
As an early-stage company, LeanOnWe had no visual assets or formally defined brand guidelines, but they needed a recognizable brand identity to help establish themselves as a player in the home care space, and to guide their marketing and web collateral.
My team decided to focus on LeanOnWe's dependability as a home care facilitator. LeanOnWe's new brand identity emphasizes the human element of a company dedicated to fostering care relationships.
The LeanOnWe Official Styleguide addresses brand identity, logo, typography, color palette, and imagery while providing examples of where those elements have been used effectively.
We began the design process by speaking with key stakeholders at LeanOnWe and requesting an official company description from the founders. After narrowing down the brand values of the company, I created a chart that connects the brand's core value to its key value propositions for both caregivers and careseekers.
The LeanOnWe logo emphasizes the human element of the company by featuring a refined silhouette of caregivers and careseekers in the LeanOnWe network. The typography uses a directional slant to express the reliability and support LeanOnWe provides employers and employees.
Since the logo needed to be used in both web and in print, I created a vertical and horizontal format for different use cases.
Clear guidelines on positioning and scale ensure that the logo always looks its best, no matter where it is displayed.
Monochromatic colorways allow for more flexibility in where the logo is displayed. I also included some examples of unacceptable logo use.
We chose “Arvo,” a rounded, approachable font, for its personality and readability at a range of different sizes.
The founders of LeanOnWe requested a blue-based color scheme, so we created a custom palette that complements LeanOnWe’s logo and brand assets.
The dark blue and light gray balance each other well and provide the framework for most designs, while the softer secondary colors can be used in larger areas to balance out the formality of the core brand colors. Vivid accent colors can be used to add emphasis and a lively touch to graphics and illustrations.
Our team used a combination of photorealism and graphical illustrations to form the visual language of LeanOnWe. Using stock photos conveys a sense of professionalism while the illustrations project a modern and friendly brand image.
Benchmark examples demonstrate effective designs according to the brand guidelines.
Below are some sketches created early in the process of defining LeanOnWe's brand identity. We considered a few different options for the logo format, which were then mocked-up on a few possible landing page layouts.
Conclusion & Key Learnings
LeanOnWe's new brand identity has now been applied to three versions of its website, as well as used in countless marketing materials distributed online and at home care conventions. Over the past year, LeanOnWe has grown as a company, and the brand guidelines have accommodated their needs effectively.
As the lead visual designer on this project, I had a great deal of creative freedom since we were creating a brand identity from scratch. I developed an understanding of LeanOnWe’s core brand values through conversation with key stakeholders and explored ways to express them visually. LeanOnWe was open to new ideas, and we were able to create a "visual design system" that could be applied to any of their future design needs.
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