At the start of 2014, Yoke was appointed as the agency to work on the strategic repositioning of the Kay & Burton brand and to deliver the rollout of a new identity across the business.
With a heritage dating back to 1938, premium real estate and property firm Kay & Burton is known for successfully dealing with some of Melbourne and Victoria’s finest homes.
Although well established and highly regarded, in late 2013 the Kay & Burton brand was assigned to a company review to ensure it retained its value and positioning in a highly competitive and ever-changing industry landscape.
At the start of 2014, Yoke was appointed as the agency to work on the strategic repositioning of Kay & Burton and to deliver the rollout of a new identity across the business. The rollout had several key projects including marketing and advertising, brand photography and new company website.
A STRATEGIC APPROACH
The first stage of the project was the creation of a comprehensive brand strategy. Undertaken by Yoke’s Brand and Strategy specialist Jill Hale, this involved researching the Kay & Burton story and timeline, conducting a full brand audit and holding staff and stakeholder interview sessions and workshops.
“The strategy phase allowed Yoke to gain a deep understanding of the past, present and future of the Kay & Burton brand and business. As a service brand, the people most responsible for the way Kay & Burton is perceived in the market are those who work for the business every day. The stakeholder interviews were therefore critical to the success of the project. They provided the opportunity to gather the opinions and insights needed to create an informed strategy that aligned with the core culture of the business.”
The findings of the research and discovery stage led to the creation of The White Paper, a document that outlined the strategic framework around which the entire brand project would be built.
The White Paper covered a wide range of topics including company structure, operational methodology, competitor analysis, audience profiles, key recommendations and future planning. It also presented the new brand platform – the attributes, values, personality and core idea of the brand.
This culminated in a new positioning for Kay & Burton, with a new focus, not simply on bricks and mortar, property and real estate, but on the lifestyle offered by a home.
A NEW IDENTITY
After the strategy had been presented and approved, Yoke started the process of interpreting its findings and directives into an appropriate design solution and creative execution.
Working closely with the marketing team at Kay & Burton, the result was a clean and contemporary identity that gave a brave and exciting new look for the business. The most significant change was a departure from the navy blue that has been the primary colour of the brand for a long time.
The move to a new primary brand colour of white was a strategic decision. While the ‘Kay & Burton blue’, as it was known, had long been associated with the brand, over time, others in the market had adopted the same colour. This had resulted in a case of cross-competition uniformity in the industry, with a homogeneous appearance across real estate branding.
A new colour was a significant move, but one that would shake the industry landscape and once again enable the Kay & Burton brand to make the first move, leaving others where it once stood.
As well as the new colour, the identity was built around a number of carefully selected design features including calculated use of space, new typefaces and editorial style layouts.
A photography series was commissioned, and a collection of powerful black and white lifestyle imagery produced under the direction of Yoke. These photos became the image library for the brand and were used across a range of on and offline marketing and communication material throughout the rollout.
The new imagery beautifully showcased the attractions and environments of the locations within Kay & Burton’s service areas. This supported the brand strategy and the new positioning by helping to establish Kay & Burton as a business able to deliver not just property but the lifestyles that come with them.
The new identity was rolled out across the entire business including all internal office communication, the business’ extensive print and digital advertising campaigns, sales and marketing material, property boards, office signage and more.
The new brand was launched at a company wide strategy day at the Crown Conference Centre where Yoke’s Creative Director Richie Meldrum presented an overview of the entire project and revealed the new brand via a launch video and exhibition of the new collateral suite.
Following a comprehensive digital strategy stage that covered a range of critical issues and considerations including business objectives, user profiles and technical requirements, Yoke put together a plan to deliver a site that would set new standards within the real estate industry.
On the surface it showcases a beautifully clean and contemporary visual aesthetic, interface design and seamless user experience. There are sections devoted to telling the story of the Kay & Burton brand and communicating the business’ industry ability and expertise.
A new feature called ‘Suburb Stories’ supports the new brand positioning by painting the picture of the lifestyle that comes with a Kay & Burton property. Users can read profiles on the best lifestyle attractions on offer in each of the suburbs in which Kay & Burton operate.
The most significant component of the site was the property listings section. A sophisticated search function enabled users to browse the portfolio of listed properties for sale and lease via standard display or through Google Maps’ innovative interface. They were also able filter their search to the specifics of the property they were looking for via size, type, price and proximity.
Behind the scenes, the site is underpinned by a comprehensive SEO strategy while carefully crafted development functionality manages the complex requirements of a large property firm and its ever-changing folio of property listings.
IMPACT AND RESULTS
The repositioned Kay & Burton brand and new identity has had a huge response since it was launched at the start of December 2014.
Those within the company has received an overwhelmingly positive feedback from past and current clients, stakeholders and the wider industry in general.