Let’s face it: financial institutions aren’t always the most charming in their communications. Usually littered with handshakes and that one guy folding his arms (you know the one), it was on us to break the mold for Strategic.
Strategic Financial Services is rooted in Utica, NY and has served clients on the East Coast for over 35 years. In contrast to the proliferation of faceless, online-only services, Strategic’s hallmarks are their approachability and personality. Their team is also highly visible to their customers and the community.
Feeling confident these characteristics would jive with a modern take on their logo and site, we worked alongside Marketing Director Mike Leist to pursue an updated brand identity and website refresh.
We started the identity refresh by assessing Strategic’s existing logo, which was a bit abstract. It was created with an internal focus—a simplified representation of crown molding found in the building in which Strategic first operated. While it conveyed strength and security, over time it became disconnected from external audiences.
In the end, we arrived at a logo that was quite a departure from their current one while retaining the signature blue. The stylized arrow-like A represents direction and aspiration. The typeface, with its uniform stroke weight, is both classic and contemporary. Together, they form a cohesive logo that communicates to its modern audience (and everyone else) the company’s core pillars: Confidence, Freedom, Results.
Reflecting the approachability and public visibility of the firm on the website was the top priority. The financial industry has a tendency to use not-so-genuine stock photos, so our goal was to better embody authenticity by relying on the actual faces of the company.
Team members are showcased with individual bios that break the mold of a typical profile. From witty nicknames to entertaining “claims to fame”, personalities are unearthed on the web, where prospective clients are making their initial assessments. Fingerprints of Strategic’s team are evident throughout the site—the homepage promotes a member at random, articles carry team attributions, and there’s no shortage of in-action photos.
Providing financial insights online is a core offering of a modern financial firm. Strategic’s Insights and Perspectives documents were previously PDFs, emailed to clients and archived on their site. We were able to build a robust Resource Hub that empowered their team to create these publications in WordPress. With the content now represented in HTML, articles could be searched and given a tailored presentation to any screen size.
Through a collection of presentational content blocks, site editors can create issues of Insights whose appearances are as engaging as their copywriting. Integrating and featuring resources so prominently helps upgrade the site from company profile to valuable information repository.
We’re proud of the new investstrategic.com, particularly because we were able to pair Strategic’s freshly minted identity with an equally refreshing web presence. This effort has given Strategic a confident and compelling first impression that more accurately reflects the makeup of their team members.