Brand Identity Re-design

Project Brief

Our client had built a successful business as a niche player in the recycling, logistics, and related market sectors. By 2013 however, in the wake of some major changes in its personnel and business model, they retained Trig Innovation to oversee a corporate re-branding to better reflect the company’s position and aspiration. With the broadening of their commercial business scope, as well as the launch of a new personal lines (life, health, home, and auto) division, the company needed a brand that points a new way forward without completely abandoning its heritage. 



Trig‘s design process, whether for a complex medical device or a simple logo, begins with broad exploration. A fixture in Charlotte, NC, Defender serves the Queen City and beyond with a footprint that runs from Georgia to New Jersey. In reflecting the company’s heritage, Trig sought to bring a regional element to the new brand in the form of Charlotte iconography. Trig first explored blending established symbols of strength and protection with iconography native to the city of Charlotte, while creating imagery that is as inviting as it is unwavering. The oak trees, the hornet’s nest, and medieval structures permeated the initial collection of concepts. An off-the-wall inspiration came from the company founders’ affinity for goats - a loyal pet whose companionship they had enjoyed for years. The only hard parameter was that we use green to reflect the company’s prominence in the recycling sector.

Trig’s process also includes the relentless filtering and expansion of ideas driven by dynamic and open client conversation. After initial discussions, we broadened the exploration to included a full spectrum of oak tree designs, a more developed version of the mountain goat figure, and subtle refinements to the rook concept. 

Nordic sailing vessel logo

Final Deliverable

After multiple rounds of development, feedback, and tweaking, Trig provided the client with a myriad of logos to choose from - a result which brought a great deal of difficulty upon our client as they faced the tough decision of picking a winner. It’s a burden they were happy to bear. While the best concepts from all 4 exploration efforts were considered, ultimately the Rook was chosen as the symbol that would define the company going forward. The Rook symbolized nearly all of the aspects they wanted the company to radiate - a fortress of unwavering stability, and a tactical and crucial element of a chess game.

Trig also developed iconography for the new line of personal insurance products Defender was offering, reviving the “ribbon shield” graphic, a favorite from logo exploration abandoned in favor of the final design. 

Rook refined logo and business card
Brand family - service icons