Transforming the educational path for our youth.
Brand Strategy, Brand Positioning, Value-Proposition, Key Messaging, Naming, Logo, Visual Identity, Website
As directly taken from their website:
"Canada’s first high school Entrepreneurship course eligible for university credit, providing youth with practical tools and experiences they need to succeed in the real world."
As strong proponents for educational reform at Tropoly, we have an existing relationship with the founders and directors of YELL and we were more than eager to help them redefine themselves.
For parents (and some teachers), the word 'entrepreneurship' is synonymous with 'risk', and this perception creates resistance around putting their kids in programs that promotes 'a risky career'. YELL needed to be repositioned in how the charity presents itself with a more optimistic and purposeful message.
BY THE NUMBERS
As per the annual survey to BC high school graduates, only 23% of them feel prepared for work upon graduation. Their feelings around post-graduate school preparedness is slightly higher at 37% - still a dismal outcome. Conversely, 80% of YELL alumni feel ready for work post-graduation. The impact of reforming education even in the slightest is clear.
brand positioning and key messaging
new logo and visual identity system
creative direction for content, imagery and style
POSITIONING, BRAND CHARACTER AND PURPOSE
YELL is an organization with many arms. For students they provide in-class instruction, mentorship programs, an alumni program, community events, an annual challenge and access to resources. To add to this complexity, the number of stakeholders YELL interacts with is staggering. From students to parents, teachers to school boards, donors to governments, it was important to ensure their purpose was clearly understood across all cohorts.
We started by architecting their internal programs under 3 pillars of Content, Community and Events, and then mapped out the activities under these pillars. This helped us define how YELL delivers value to each of its stakeholder cohorts.
We then proceeded to develop YELL's character and voice using our proprietary brand character framework. This exercise provided YELL's marketing and communications team a toolkit to navigate tonality and variability in the brand's voice given the large set of stakeholders.
We conducted additional workshops with the founders to define:
YELL's value proposition statement:
We design, develop and deliver a collaborative educational platform for youth.
What YELL stands for.
Empowering Youth to Take on the Future.
An external facing tagline.
Take on the Future.
Throughout the entire process we conducted feedback sessions with students, teachers, mentors, donors and board members.
RE-NAMING (SORT OF)
When founded, the organization was named Y.E.L.L. as an acronym for Youth Entrepreneurship Leadership Launchpad - this provided a description for where the charity was at the beginning. However, after being in operation for over 6 years, we re-visited the name and the meaning behind it.
We explored several naming options before landed back on "YELL", but without the expanded acronym.
As quoted directly by a student below, there was a clear indication that the name had evolved to mean something more than just the acronym.
No longer am I the shy and confused girl that walked into the program; instead, I am a young entrepreneur who’s prepared to ‘YELL’ for change.”
The naming adjustment simply transitions the brand name from a technical description to something with emotion and impact.
LOGO + VISUAL IDENTITY
With the simplification of the name, and the updated purpose, positioning and brand character, we designed a new visual identity to reflect what YELL had evolved into.
The process we undertook started with word association and mood boarding as shown below.
The new logo represents a harmony of colours and weights to demonstrate the diversity of the program, its students and its constituents. We wanted to create something that balanced the strength of a solid entrepreneurial foundation, and the creativity of exploring and learning on this path.
And the visual direction expands to represent this creativity and diversity.
YELL is truly making an impact in young peoples' lives. We hope that our efforts will play a role in scaling YELL's reach further.
Neel and Brady's strategic and creative insights have helped us distill the value we deliver to each of our diverse stakeholder groups. As a young charity working on complex systemic change, it has always been challenging for us to communicate the value we deliver clearly and succinctly.
The team invested their time, talent and energy to lead the rebranding and repositioning of YELL. Their efforts have undoubtedly amplified our impact, gave us confidence in how we communicate and infused our work with a renewed sense of possibilities.
Amit Sandhu, Managing Director and Founder, YELL