Smiths News PLC
Smiths News PLC, the UK’s largest newspaper and magazine distributor instructed Bella Design & Marketing to create a new brand identity at a pivotal time in the company’s history. The rebrand represented a return to the company’s core competence and expertise, providing an unrivalled service to publishers, retailers and the general public, all of whom they have served for over 200 years. It was important that the new concept alluded to the previous brand identity to ensure connectivity with the company’s long and successful past, whilst at the same time providing a contemporary look and feel to take the business forward.
The company’s traditional colour palette was cleverly updated to include more vibrant, modern hues of blue, accompanied by a wider range of complementary secondary colours. A simple wordmark in a contemporary font is supported by a striking emblem, encased in a circular carrier. The emblem itself comprises an abstract letter ’S,’ composed of a trio of three simple shapes. The curvatures of the new logo were subsequently utilised as a creative device and developed into a visual system called ’The Chain.’ Connecting the brand to the company’s services across the newspaper and magazine supply chain, The Chain unifies the Smiths News identity across all print and digital applications. Creating a sense of motion and direction, The Chain reflects the fast-moving pace of the industry in which the business operates and can be used as simply or as boldly as the context requires.
A comprehensive brand guideline document was created providing an overview of the rebrand and outlining best practice to ensure consistency and compliance. The document includes detailed guidance on logo usage, colour, typography, image placement and application of the brand across both print and digital collateral.
Having created the new brand identity, Bella’s studio embarked on delivering it out across all relevant touchpoints – both internal and external. This included the development of new company templates, stationery, PowerPoint presentations and a series of striking wall graphics at the company’s headquarters.
In tandem with the rebrand of the parent company, Smiths News, Bella’s design team also refreshed the branding and collateral of three ancillary businesses; Martin Lavell, Instore and DMD, as well as the business’ newly established charity, Pass It On. The integrated approach ensured that all brands within the business were visually aligned and simultaneously launched to the market. This multi-faceted project has signalled a fresh start for the business, successfully building on the strong foundations of the past and looking to the future with passion, energy and a trademark commitment to the delivery of outstanding customer service.