04 FEB 2016
Univisual’s revolution, after 20 years of activity in the brand and trademark sector, under the spotlights of magazine Nuova Comunicazione.
Univisual's brand (r)evolution.
by Mario Garaffa.
Founded by Gaetano Grizzanti twenty years ago, Univisual has revolutionized the way to do branding in Italy- carrying out important projects like the re-positioning of Salmoiraghi & Viganò and harmonization of Bancomat trademark- specializing in the branding strategy and development of identity systems aimed at evolving the brand into a business asset.
Specialization, competence and experience are essential when talking about Brand Identity. And Univisual – specifies founder and CEO Gaetano Grizzanti – is not an “agency” but a professional consultancy without 'accounts’ and ‘creatives’, but based on a team and a methodology exclusively focused on brand and trademark. «The consultancy approach of Univisual – explains Grizzanti –aims at helping the top management of firms to transform their brand into a business asset. This implies developing the best strategy to evolve a mentality based on the product in a market approach aimed at asserting an actual brand, able to create values for stakeholders».
Does truly valorizing the brand mean, turning it into an asset of the business strategy?
First of all, we discuss with our customers the actual role of their brand within the Organization and outside, on the market, sharing concepts and potentials. There is a widespread tendency to associate it exclusively to the Communication sphere, when instead, it relates above all to the financial and commercial ones. Today, compared to the past, a change of vision and consequent branding logics is necessary. Once the brand was built on the product’s quality and characteristics, today the brand leads marketing.
Which services and solutions do you offer to customers to develop the brand identity?
The approach is ‘tailor-made’, however as guidelines, we summarized the “ingredients" based on which we formulate the best "recipe” to satisfy requests and needs, in three activity areas – Brand Strategy / Brand Expression / Brand Management.
An intervention program must be based on an analysis to define the project goals, an aspect that will determine the expectations and will act as matrix to monitor results. It is essential to carry out an analysis process first of all within the Organization to properly filter information and to begin a 'tactic’ process to engage employees: the purpose is to avoid future inconsistencies between what the brand will evoke towards the exterior and the internal reality.
Another critical factor of Univisual’s methodology is to make people understand that the brand must be entrusted an “operational” task, in addition to the implicit functions to identify a property or act as ‘warranty seal’.
After the analysis phase, the Brand Architecture and Brand Personality are identified, and then conferred an identity – verbal and visual- system in line with the established identity strategy. Every project ends with the harmonization activity, meaning the elaboration of guidelines based on which the brand is tangible, with coherence and credibility.
Among our services, we offer legal advisory upon request for the legal protection of a trademark (author’s note: Gaetano Grizzanti is Expert of the Court of Milan) and a post-intervention “Brand Deployment” activity, meaning we disuse the new branding culture within the corporate organization through training sessions and workshops.
When do you intervene on the brand strategy? In which occasions you are more often called by firms and institutions?
In general during moments of change, such as during the opening of a new business areas, acquisitions or mergers, during internationalization processes. We are also often called in critical situations, like in case of turnover drops or after attacks from emerging markets: in view of negative economic data, we try to restore the success of the enterprise, by intervening on the brand. Because the brand represents nowadays the strategic lever that, if well implemented, can confer actual added value to an offer. Nonetheless, the enterprises that mainly contact Univisual are Italian or international with Italian headquarters, leader in their market spheres.
Why should a customer choose Univisual?
In view of the tangible skills that we boast in this sector and because we only deal with this: the 30 years of my experience and 20 official years of Univisual, with hundreds of projects executed, have defined a consolidated methodology. I would also add the quality of our Design – acknowledged by numerous sector’s awards- and exclusive competence with regards to Naming.
Which are the key elements of Univisual's methodology?
The strong project sharing with the customer, thanks to an actual co-working activity, through which we engage the top management and the company's marketing division. Particular workshops – that we call “Brand-Storming” – and “maieutic” sessions” form an integral part of our work methodology.
Can you mention some of your case-histories?
Since 2016 is a year of celebrations for Univisual, I would like to mention some past projects, like the intervention executed for Salmoiraghi & Viganò: today we can state that, after ten years, the goal to evolve a sign – container of other brands- into an actual brand, was fully attained; and the intervention for Bancomat trademarks – carried out for ABI (author’s note: Associazione Bancaria Italiana) – that underwent a harmonization process for the first time, after its launch in the '70s.
Among the most recent interventions, I can mention the new corporate identity of Grandi Navi Veloci, the brand identity of Pampers BabyDry of Bayer's phyto-therapeutic line. In the ‘finance’ sector, I can mention the start-up intervention of ProFamily, a company of BPM Group; the evolution of Banca Popolare di Bari brand and the association with Cassa di Risparmio di Asti during the acquisition process of Cassa di Risparmio di Biella and Vercelli – from Monte dei Paschi di Siena – for the transformation in Banking Group. Among the customers acquired in 2015, there is the pharmaceutical company Menarini and tour-operator Gastaldi.
This article is taken from the annex to magazine: "NC" no. 57 / December - January 2016