Why Dare

We recently held an event to celebrate the launch of our new brand. The evening was a great success with some fantastic discussion points from Maureen Aw, Paul Englert and Rina Lee. However, the conversations on the night helped me reflect on the journey to create our new brand.

Being told that our brand didn’t represent us and that we were visually “Blah” was a bitter pill to swallow. It was Julia Zhou who held up the mirror to allow us to see ourselves and confront the fact that while our content was great and we are clearly opinion leaders in our field we did not communicate this well, why?

Well, when Ivy Chiam and I started Contrast 7 years ago, we had ideals and knowledge but no budget, so we did everything ourselves. Our knowledge in our field is exceptional, which meant our content was good, but we are not branding and marketing professionals, we are not graphic designers so of course there was a gap between what we know and do and how we visually communicate it. It was time for us to overhaul our image, and speak of who we really are Brand was the first step. We will always be eternally grateful for all Julia’s help and advice.

We engaged EmilyKousah at KOUSAH&CO. We felt we needed to first address the visually Blah so the initial brief was simply to rebrand Contrast. Part of the rebranding process involved consulting many of our former clients from the large international clients like WPP & Temasek to the local clients like Anbinvestments & chew. This was a fantastic way for us to understand how others saw us.

We were happy in our comfort zone of being Contrast, and quite attached to our name , maybe a little fearful of too much change. However, when Dan Colverson responded with, “Don’t know why they are called Contrast – Designing Space for the Digital Age” we realized that there was a problem with our name. While it had meaning to us, it didn’t really represent who we are, a change of this magnitude went way beyond what we anticipated. We embraced the change whole heartedly because this is what we do, this is who we are, we are not scared by the future or uncertainty, we are not scared of the world beyond our comfort zone. We want to push boundaries, even our own, in the quest to always do better.