A SWOT Analysis was done to gain insight on how other gender neutral activewear companies branded themselves.
I focused on analyzing companies that make products for those who are gender non-conforming because how a company appeals to this market is very important. It’s not enough to just make products that aren’t gendered, but to allow the customer to feel open and safe buying them.
SPRING is more concerned on allowing those who identify outside the gender binary feel at ease buying active wear.
A quick analysis was done to rate certain elements of competing brands. I focused on important elements such as
Quality of Photography
Variety of Products
I placed a lot of value on the Inclusivity, Trans-Friendly Language, and Ethical Manufacturing. These elements are really important to the branding of SPRING because the company values people over products.
The low scores on Aesthetic and Variety of Products means that these companies don’t offer products that gender non-conforming people want. They don’t operate within a hivemind, they have variety of stylistic preferences. By having a low variety of visually unappealing products, these companies are not actually giving customers the array of options in order to express themselves.
The lack of Trans Friendly Language means the companies don’t really care about gender non-conforming customers. These are the companies that think of gender neutral apparel as a business strategy, rather than an actual need for many consumers. They care more about just selling their products and moving on, which is not what SPRING is all about.
However knowing just the aspects of where the other brands haven’t met expectations is not enough. In order to truly fill these gaps I pursued a SWOT analysis. This analysis gave me a more indepth look as to how exactly these other brands fell short.
What exactly about their products made them aesthetically unappealing? How could they be improved upon?
A lack of variety in products isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But in the context of a company that advertises to gender non-confirming customers, what sort of doors does their lack of variety close?
What exactly about their language is not friendly to the trans community? Why is it important to carefully pick and choose how the copy is written?
Gender Euphoria is a term used when someone someone feels that their gender identity is affirmed. It’s a sense of relief, and happiness.
INCLUSIVE + RELIABLE + CHARMING + BOLD
I started the conceptualization by collaging images that represent the concept of Gender Euphoria, and also the 4 personality values.
I looked for images that are vibrant, bold, and dynamic. This moodboard helped me to create a visual guideline for the rest of the branding process.
The next challenge was to translate the feeling of Gender Euphoria into the logo. It's hard to pick one static image to express what SPRING stands for. I asked myself some questions:
How can I manipulate letters and shapes to depict the feeling of Gender Euphoria, and the personality values?
Is a wordmark enough?
I went down a path that led me to shapes. A shape on its own can feel quite static.
But what happens when shapes interact with each other?
What happens when you transform and overlap them?
Can I make a cool, revolutionary logo by translating each letter of SPRING into its own abstract shape? (I tried this, I can't)
The SPRING logo is a collaboration of shapes and colour. These elements work together in order to represent the 4 personality values of SPRING.