Identity Designed is a showcase of brand identity projects from around the world.

CX

Contributed by Georgina Milne of Moving Brands.

Moving Brands worked with Cloud Experience, a cloud storage service backed by TomorrowVentures (Eric Schmidt’s venture fund) to define their unique business proposition in a saturated market.

Strategy

The team had one key objective; to be a market-leader in the already-crowded cloud storage market. To achieve this, Moving Brands worked with their key stakeholders to define the core product offer, select and understand their audience, and create a striking, differentiated brand identity.

We distilled the many possible product options into one clear focus: The product would be ‘more social’ than any other cloud service. Hero Journeys were developed – a snapshot of the multiple user benefits – that aligned the product offer to a consumer segment.

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

Identity

In order to differentiate Cloud Experience from their competitors, it was imperative to look at the name. The team felt this was generic and uninspired, drawing parallels with smaller, more commoditized companies. Cloud Experience had already invested heavily in the domain name, so a thorough naming process working within these limitations led to the solution of ‘CX.’ The aspirational and user-focused strap line “Cloud to the Power of X,” suggests an offer that encompasses all you expect from the cloud, magnified to the infinite power.

For this technology-led but consumer-focused organization, a believable, human Brand Narrative was critical. ‘Content comes to life’ reflects CX’s ability to bring simplicity and excitement to the way we share and store content in a moving world. Defining Behaviours such as ‘geektastic,’ ‘simple’ and ‘obsessive,’ gave shape to the character of the business and how the experience they deliver comes to life.

The visual identity system was driven by the important relationship between the copy and graphic language. The vibrant core assets are complemented by a library of color and pattern elements. A bespoke typeface was created that includes a built-in open-type iconographic system. The unique graphic language is supported by a tone of voice and messaging system built of the Brand Behaviour and Brand Character attributes. A system of curated photography completes the system.

The UX underpins the product’s ‘social’ credentials, and was designed to be scalable, with added functionality and user experience to be implemented as the business matured.

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

Experience

The identity design system was channeled consistently in the UI and UX of the website, and the Web, mobile and iPad apps. Moving image was used as a major feature on the CX website homepage to share the brand story.

Whilst the CX offering is accessed online and via apps, we also created final executions that brought the brand to life in a cross-channel system including print collateral, social media platforms, apparel, and a brand video.

The brand messaging was rolled out across an online campaign, and visualized across an outdoor media campaign, with hero messages including:

  • ‘Less Fluff More Cloud’
  • ‘You’re gonna love it up here’
  • ‘Cloud to the power of X’

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

CX brand identity

“Moving Brands understood exactly what we needed and what we were trying to achieve with our business and our brand. Their knowledge of new technologies along with their talent for design made them the perfect partner. I’m thrilled with the results.”
— KEITH PARDY, CMO, CX INC

Also from Moving Brands on Identity Designed: Watermark.

View more on brand identity projects on the Moving Brands website. Follow the team on Twitter.

15 much appreciated comments about “CX”

  1. Shazooooooooom! Looks like they made lots and lots of stuff (all those loverrrly printouts stuck to walls – like showing off scars) to prove how super hard those cool guys in their nicely pressed box-fresh bonobos® and Toms® have worked. And there’s nothing quite like showing a hundred colour options because that’s never a waste of time.

    Joking aside (see, I was joking up there), the ID does look nice but I think i’t just a little bit too much of a designer 30 minute organ solo (think ELP) and a little too light on the fundamentals of a great brand. What I mean is, the people behind the scenes will be uber-wowed with the noodling that has gone into the end product BUT the end user will not attribute any of this to what is presented to them. To the end user the image/identity is either memorable or it isn’t. TPersonally, I don’t think they got it right. I liked the squared ones as I think this would have had more legs and fundamentally it hints to the idea of boxes and storage (don’t let dropbox® see that one) and also the idea of digital ‘things’ and also the notion of convergence (arrows pointing inwards into a central, singularity or storage – an everywhere point of everything you have in your digital life).

    Keith, I think you backed the wrong pony. (from a purely design POV).

  2. @gareth +1. I really like that so much of the process is shown and quite likely the team has thought about it from every angle. As garteh has said, a user’s reaction will be much more instantaneous and less analytical and the real question is whether the brand works on this level. I can only speak for myself: I like the overlaying of colors but the main typography and multitude of colors cheapens it (look at the t-shirts). It works best when some sophistication is added like on the iMac showing “store, share and access …”.

  3. I would have liked to have seen the “more social than any other cloud service” come through a little more. That’s seems like a big competitive lead in the market-place and to not convey that a little more clearly is a missed opportunity. I do like how the new name, CX works so well as a logotype while also looking like a stand-alone mark.

  4. I’m frequently been drawn to these posts purely for Gareth’s point of view, humorous but relevant.

    I wonder whether you could get in touch and see if you fancy having a crack at some of the projects I post on my site BP&O?

  5. There’s so much work gone into the whole project that only the team behind it and those in the know could ever appreciate.

    It’s a huge body of work and personally I don’t feel the end product justifies all of the back story. One can only imagine how far over budget this went with the amount of man hours that seem to have gone into looking at those photos.

    Unless they were all staged… surely not.

  6. Really not feeling this one to be honest.

    Once again, @Gareth, you’ve said what I was thinking and more—I’m glad there’s individuals such as yourself who think similarly to me!

    I agree 100%, it’s nice that they put all this ‘creative’ work into the project, and stuck things up on the wall, and took ‘clever’ photos of their progress, and tried to be hip designers, but at the end of the day, that process doesn’t get you the result.

    Clearly in this identity design, the result needs so much more work—but proper work put into it, none of this prancing around synthesising creative work and processes has turned this design into something great, instead it feels really mediocre and expected.

    Let’s be honest, we’ve all seen this kind of design process, where they’re focused on the presentation of the process, and fiddly details like business cards, stationary, shirts, posters, shiny websites on shiny iMacs and more—and the huge problem with this method, is the original idea is lost, the strength is lost.

    With this design, they started with some loose ideas, bounced them around a little and picked an idea that had some potential, but lacked strength.

    My point is, an identity of any sort should start with a focused goal, idea/vision, and a strong mark/way of being identified.

    Simple as that, as long as the strength is there from the beginning, the whole process after that can be built up rapidly, and with confidence.

    I’m especially bothered by image 18, it lacks the legibility, and the message is literally not clear! Sure they’re “being hip”, and “creative”, but how far can you go appealing to the public with that style?

    My point is, sometimes staying within some of the fundamental rules of graphic design (in this case, legible type, having a balance of simple and complex, positive and negative space) can actually benefit the identity, and in this project it seems like those rules haven’t been followed/roughly kept within.

    Another thing, the slogan isn’t clear, are they really saying they have ‘x’ amount of cloud power? What if ‘x’ isn’t a very high number? What if they can’t offer what the customer wants? I’m saying that the slogan could be telling the customer that the company is uncertain of the cloud power they offer. Well, I know that the company would be very well aware of the cloud power, but I wonder if they could promote that message in a better way (maybe something cheesy and expected like ‘CX: X-treme Cloudpower’).

    And the logo? Looks expected. Doesn’t represent what they offer too well. Perhaps a cloud could’ve been introduced. To me it’s just rounded letters that say ‘CX’. Nothing special.

    Like they said, generic and uninspired. They had the cloud and friendliness aspect to work with, and yet didn’t roll with it.

    And another point, a design isn’t proper when the designers/team behind it use ‘wireframes’, and Moleskin notepads, and Photoshop, and iPhone app mockup pads, and iMacs, and when the website is presented on an expected MacBook or iMac .psd, or even when it’s all documented on a Canon EOS 5D MIIIIIII or whatever! A design is proper when its designed properly.

    When the team tries alternative approaches, and truly brainstorm ideas/concepts, when they research, when they put their heart and soul into the identity, THAT’S when the design becomes a design.

    You can candy coat the design as much as you want, but it won’t make it any better.

    Lesson for today: Start with a strong idea/concept/name, and you can use it as a strong, solid foundation to work/build upon.

  7. I agree with Gareth’s and Louis’ sentiments. The way this brand development process has been documented is indeed lovely but, as is clear by the commentary so far, it seems to steal the limelight over an identity that seems second-best.

    In saying that, their photography and identity-development story works beautifully as a case study on the Moving Brands website (and indeed here on ID) and it’s no wonder that they attract the clientele that they do – the process looks fun, creative and inspiring and gets attention from industry bloggers which leads to more exposure. A hat-tip to Moving Brands for conveying their own “Creator” archetype identity successfully through the work that they do for their clients.

  8. One more thought: Doesn’t “cx” sound very close to “sex” and is this not a selling point of the “.cx” top-level domain (that wasn’t used, but confer http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goatse.cx)? Maybe a native speaker can comment on this but this brand starts to look like a parody.

  9. same same but different?

    http://www.creuna.dk/Aktuelt/Download-logo/

  10. @Jacob Youngblood – nice find Youngblood[hound].

  11. I am so glad to read Louis’ comments on this, as these are my exact sentiments! I totally agree with you! I posted up some similar thoughts when I saw the logo on the Brand New website.

    It’s all well and good sitting round a table, in your silly t-shirts and jeans, playing with plastic – but is this really what a client wants to pay for? I dread to think how much this project cost and the end result is average at best. To me, it looks like the logo for a 70′s soft porn website, especially given the bright blue and pink. And those different colour options, once again look to be done just for the sake of it – I don’t see them used anywhere on the website.

    Also, is it just me or is the way the X blends into the C on the right hand side, a little phalic? Maybe this is a porn website and it’s just a big cover up until launch day.

  12. Its easy to roll your eyes at Moving Brands with their fancy reportage style photography reassuring everyone that they’re oh-so-creative and that their fee was money well spent, but it probably excites their potential clients and they do produced some good work. Not wholly sure I’d put this in that category though at first glance.

  13. This has to be some kind of bad PR probably. Look how much afford we put into your brand. Now we can justify the money you spend. 20 people designing CX an its fun?! Total lack of leading idea brutally over-forced by chaotic quantity.

    Sorry. These are emotions I do feel going over these pictures.

  14. Sorry, but I really don’t like this. Some of the copy borders on unreadable with the overlaid letters and it started to hurt my eyes.

  15. Such nice work. Such a crap website.

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