Rebranding and developing a new everything for Housing Units.


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Challenge

Housing Units (HU) is one of the North West’s biggest furniture stores, and having won the right to be lead strategic and marketing agency in September 2017, the first challenge was to develop a new proposition and identity for the brand.

The big challenge was to give meaning and a fresh distinctiveness to HU. They wanted to reconnect with people and draw in new customers by developing a more contemporary brand with a simple and cohesive message about who they are and what they do.

Shaping shopper behaviour

Behavioural insight:

Our approach to the entire rebrand was led by the introduction of a new brand descriptor ‘The Home Department Store’. This was purposely constructed to communicate who Housing Units is in the simplest form of words. ‘The Home’ being the place customers desire to shop for and ‘Department Store’ which carries all the established connotations of what department stores offer: service, choice and shopping experience.

We approached making the logo more contemporary by focusing on three key areas: typeface, colour and device. Starting with the typeface we cut the letters to create a rounder more ‘homely’ typeface. In particular, the ‘U’ was crafted to feature the same in both the abbreviation and the full name of the business.

When it came to colour, Housing Units has established green as their brand colour and it was important to keep this. To fit with the contemporary nature of the new logo, we chose a richer more tonal green. Finally, the square device holding the brand name was born from wanting to hold the whole brand within its own department.

In rolling out the brand we built on the idea of ‘departments’ and used this to create a distinctive design vehicle, using block sections to hold images, words and colours. The design vehicle was rolled out across an integrated campaign including TV, in store, DM and radio. The new brand has transformed the whole look of their store. Upon arrival customers are welcomed by statuesque plinth signage that lights up in low light.

Driving success

The new branding launched just before Christmas and is ongoing in its integration across the business. However, the current feedback from customers has been very positive.

When the new branding went live during the Winter Sale Preview Event in December 2017, Housing Units broke its daily in store sales record on the first day of the Preview Event and on the same day also experienced its biggest ever day of online sales.

The Preview Event, which lasted 4 days, saw a 3% increase in sales compared with 2016’s Preview Event with furniture sales alone up 16% year on year.

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