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Jonathan Hubbard, Creative Director, The Clearing

2 min, 48 sec read
14:45 PM | 19 October 2015
by Philippa Smithers
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Last week we talked to Fiona Hazell from Breast Cancer Now about their new brand video and the story behind the project. This week we talk to Jonathan Hubbard, Creative Director at The Clearing, the agency selected to take charge of this rebranding project. 

What aspect did you find most challenging?

There were a few key challenges we worked through strategically and creatively. First, we wanted to build a brand that drew in people emotionally in order to raise both awareness and funding support. A brand they could love and own as their own. A brand they wanted to wear on their sleeves. So we opted for a very singular symbol – the heart inside the circle – that people could immediately understand but could also bring into their fundraising worlds and create their own materials.

"We needed to be clear about the role of pink, and take ownership."

Second, we needed to be clear about the role of pink, and take ownership of it. It’s often a hot topic because it can alienate people from the cause. It’s also dubbed the ‘pink wash’ that means brands involved in breast cancer blend into one. Our solution was to go against the market trend of the bright magentas and reclaim a more human, gentle pink. But bring it together with a sophisticated, credible grey that gave it a strength and a contrasting, unique palette.

Creating a completely new brand is a tough job – tell us about pitching to win?

Interestingly, our project kick off happened during the first time both organisations met each other. We created a series of collaborative exercises for people to create shared views, and work together to explore the potential for the new brand. It’s very much what we reinforced at the pitch – a collaborative, open working relationship that gave everyone a voice. It was how we worked the whole way through – with supporters, sufferers, colleagues and partners. And we believe it was one of the fundamental reasons for the brand’s warm reception.

How did you approach the charity’s brief?

Like any brief, really. In a logical yet creatively-minded way. We always start with defining the challenges and opportunities before exploring ways to position the solution. It gives us a strategic framework to then create the brand’s world, which always acts as a guiding hand through development.

Did having two brands affect your usual process?

Not really. There was so much shared between the two brands that we saw synergies right away – from supporters, colleagues and partners. It really was a coming together of two like-minded brands.

What lessons would you share about working for a branding agency?

Learn to really listen. The solution might not be as immediate as you think. Particularly in the charity world where the ties to brands are so much more personal and deep, that you have to really dig and understand to move forward with both sensitivity and imagination.

"Learn to really listen. The solution might not be immediate."

There is also a huge satisfaction working on such socially important causes. This is the sort of work that can really make a difference to people’s lives. The more successful the charity is, the better equipped it will be to help stop women dying. That’s quite a responsibility.

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