RS PRO Branding

A new brand strategy, proposition, identity and roll out for global brand RS Components, to improve awareness and customer perceptions for thousands of own brand products.

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RS PRO. Our Range Your Choice.

THE CLIENT

RS Components serves over 1 million customers, in 32 different countries, turning over around £1bn per year. Having started in 1937 they have a long history of providing quality parts, to all industries across the world.

THE CHALLENGE

Despite RS Components being a globally recognised brand with hundreds of thousands of customers, their own brand range of products had little brand awareness amongst their customer base. With a large range including 60,000 products and enormous diversity, the question of what customers should expect from the range had resulted in poor awareness of the brand and an expectation of poor quality. With private label products a strategic priority for the business, the challenge was to create a clear proposition and identity and articulate it to customers through consistent messaging and visuals language. The key objective for the project was to transition from selling individual products purely on features, to customers choosing RS PRO as their brand of choice.
RS PRO branding applied to a huge range of marketing material
RS PRO Hero Products

"To bring this new proposition to life we created a visual identity that could be used to communicate the brand pillars"

 

RS PRO Icons and Imagery

THE SOLUTION

By analysing customer behaviours and data from their ecommerce platform it was clear that there was little awareness and direct purchasing of their own brand products, RS PRO. Through a series of workshops and audit we identified the need to create a stronger brand proposition for the brand rather than just selling the range as individual products. We developed the strategy around three key brand pillars; Quality, Choice, Availability. By clearly defining these with a hierarchy that showed the relevance of each, the RS PRO label meant more than just a budget alternative, this was summarised in the strapline ‘Our Range, Your Choice’.
 
An Identity With a Design Philosophy
To bring this new proposition to life we created a visual identity that could be used to communicate the brand pillars but also help the products to be identified amongst other brands. We created the visual philosophy of ‘everyday beauty’ for the brand, elevating the everyday to heroes in their own right. This adjustment of focus, helped to shift the brand visual perception from basic alternative to positive choice. To ensure that the strategy and the execution were clear for everyone using the branding we created a range of templates and messaging based on the new proposition and design philosophy. These templates were then made available through the RS Components online brand platform, a centralised resource for all to use. To make sure hero products expressed their ‘everyday beauty’, we commissioned photographer Rikard Osterland to elevate products from the tool bench, to objects of understated beauty and simplicity. These brand level images expressed the quality of the products in banners and covers alongside simpler pack shots.
 
Having a clear brand strategy, proposition and a design philosophy meant that as the branding was devolved to regional teams, the application was easier to understand and enabled regional expression. This was accompanied by clear guidance, assets and hierarchy for different audiences and applications at brand, category and product level.

Brand guardianship and consistency
With thousands of employees across the world interacting with the brand and many different teams localising and tailoring it to their requirements, consistency is essential to prevent a gradual degrading of the assets and application. We worked with stakeholder teams from across the world to ensure buy in and to take feedback on any specific requirements. With this input in mind we created a set of branding guidelines that helped ensure consistent application. Alongside this we created a set of universal logos, assets, templates and messaging that were distributed through the RS PRO Brandzone platform. This equipped teams and regional brand owners with a design system to create new creative and marketing collateral as well as apply assets to thousands of products across the range.



RS PRO mobile advert
RS PRO wall graphics
RS PRO website branding application

THE RESULTS

With a clear new proposition and all of the tools to bring it to life, the branding has been rolled out globally within RS Components and through all of their customer touch points. The clarity on what values drive RS PRO products has enabled them to consolidate their communications and create more consistent, centralised messaging and sharing of material.
 
This consistency has resulted in greater brand awareness within their customer base, a YOY increase in RS PRO product sales and a significant increase in RS PRO brand term searches within their ecommerce platform. These indicators suggest that as per the original objectives, RS PRO is indeed becoming a brand of choice amongst its competitors.