This case story describes our work with MSA Professional Services (MSA), a multidisciplinary firm, to rebrand the organization and redesign its website to promote the firm’s unique point of view.
MSA is a multi-regional engineering and architecture firm with an unrivaled commitment to partnering with and supporting their clients, creating stronger communities in the process. In 2017, MSA initially engaged Rattleback to redesign its website and optimize its content marketing program. After undergoing broader discussions around positioning, MSA’s leadership team came to the conclusion that with a growing footprint and strong company culture, its opportunities were much deeper than a web redesign and decided to pursue a rebranding initiative. The objective with this rebranding included creating a new logo, updated messaging, and an entirely new identity system and website to better reflect the firm’s evolution into a growing, 100% employee-owned business with a multi-regional presence. As a result, MSA has realized:
A Brand that Did Not Keep Pace with the Firm’s Growth
Chief Executive Officer
MSA had grown from its roots as a small mid-west engineering firm serving primarily rural markets into a multi-regional, employee-owned organization with the passion and expertise to help clients develop more sustainable communities. While the organization grew, its brand struggled to evolve. The firm had taken the initiative to launch a content marketing effort; but the thought leadership was not generating the expected results. Moreover, the company lacked clarity around its governing point of view with no central messaging strategy to tie its marketing efforts together and clearly communicate the value MSA offers its clients.
Establishing a Strategic Point of View to Anchor the Brand Identity, Messaging, and Website
The Rattleback and MSA teams engaged in an in-depth exploration of the company’s strengths and attributes to pinpoint the firm’s unique differentiators and define pillars upon which the brand could be based. Based on this platform, the Rattleback team helped MSA create the critical elements of the band and establish a solid foundation for the site redesign. The solution included:
A new logo that more clearly tells the MSA story
Rattleback’s mood boarding process helped the team align around colors, textures, and shapes that best express MSA’s collaborative, honest approach to client relationships and the work it does to improve communities. Leveraging the results, the Rattleback team crafted a new logo mark to express the firm’s viewpoint on the built environment and its approach to sustainable, economic development. To build excitement around the new logo, the MSA team successfully launched a logoed apparel buy-back program to encourage all associates to embrace and proudly wear the new identity.
A messaging platform that shifts the paradigm from talking about features to emphasizing value
By defining and articulating the firm’s point of view, Rattleback helped MSA create a new messaging strategy to better communicate how its approach solves client problems and delivers sustainable value. The process included defining who the company is and what it does, the purpose behind its work, and how its approach is unique from its competitors. The process helped MSA frame its communications to better resonate with clients, emphasize the benefits of the MSA approach, and position the company as a trusted source of expertise to help communities with the challenges they face every day.
A site that positions MSA as the solution to client problems
Beyond dated technology, the old MSA site was cumbersome, and lacked a compelling narrative which made it difficult for visitors to find the information they needed. As we undertook this redesign, we started with engineering the site against the preferred buyer journey while helping both position and differentiate MSA’s overarching solutions and individual services. As part of this process, Rattleback built a content management engine which enabled the ability to seamlessly connect MSA’s insights, work, solution mix, and people. The results lead to a better and more authentic presentation of MSA and an improved user experience aligned around the client’s buying process.
Telling a Better, More Engaging Story
Following the launch of the new brand and site, key visitor metrics improved significantly: