How do you create a solid identity for a thoroughly high-tech company? You don’t talk about its technology, you talk about its people. In a far-reaching rebranding exercise for VITO Remote Sensing, BBC turned away from the fancy satellites and UAV’s, focusing instead on the people that work with them. Their capabilities, their knowledge, their genuine passion – B2B has never been more human.
Ever since its inception more than 20 years ago, VITO Remote Sensing has been trying to find its place. The company harnesses the power of high-tech optics fitted to anything from satellites to UAV’s by extracting valuable insights from their images. It originated as a sub-unit from VITO, a semi-public R&D firm covering a wide range of scientific fields. Over the years, VITO Remote Sensing slowly drifted further away from its parent structure while – at the same time – the need arose to address more commercial demand. In 2016, the stage was set for a drastic rebranding.
At BBC, any project starts from a deep understanding of our customer and their industry. During the course of an intensive, multiple hour workshop, we uncovered the importance of people in the organization. All highly-educated experts in their field, it’s the men and women of VITO Remote Sensing that develop the algorithms to filter out reliable insights, or that help spread the knowledge throughout your organization. It’s them that help you see the bigger picture.
Already at the earliest stages, this idea found its way to our copy and visual concept. Today, the people of VITO Remote Sensing are found everywhere: from the temporary one-pager website to brochures and leaflets to the all-new PRISM blog. More importantly, individual profiles are linked to their field of expertise. While the head of Unit Manager Steven Krekels is featured prominently on the website, you’ll find Head of Technology Tanja Van Achteren on “her” space missions leaflet. Literally everyone had his or her picture taken.
And for all the variety that’s built this way, the unique, consistent visual style ties it all together. A truly memorable brand was made.
As much as we love all the material we made for VITO Remote Sensing, the PRISM blog deserves special attention. To us, the need to have a platform to share our client’s deep knowledge was clear as day. What’s more, few in the industry had actually done it. And thus, the idea of the PRISM blog was born. Its name captured the optical nature of VITO Remote Sensing’s activities, as well as the many facets of knowledge you’d find within.
We approached it in the same way as we did anything else, tying people to their specific expertise, giving them a stage to freely talk about their passion. The design could be high-tech, but the people had to be there (hover over an article and look for the overlay). To fully tap into the potential of a commercial customer base, the entire blog was built within the Hubspot-template, allowing for rich user insights and pin-point personalization.
However, this didn’t influence or hamper our design in any way. Rather than starting from the assumed limitations, we started from the art style and the vision we had set. Our front-end developer – really, special props to Ben – then worked tirelessly to translate the design into the Hubspot blog framework. Turns out: no limitation didn’t have a way to work around it.
The PRISM blog got a soft launch at the end of February 2017 and will get its big reveal together with the full website coming June. But while it’s still too early to talk numbers, the reception of our rebranding and the PRISM blog have been unanimously positive. What started out as a simple principle and visual identity found its way to every piece of communication, all while retaining its unique, consistent style. By bringing the entire staff into in our story, everyone is willing to participate and write their part. The new website and a social strategy will further make sure that VITO Remote Sensing is soaring high into the stratosphere – just like its tech.