California Energy Designs (“CED”) is an engineering firm providing system-design services and product deployment solutions, specializing in the development of HVAC, Plumbing, and Air-Quality Control Systems. The Company was positioned in the high-end segment of the market for its services, having earned a reputation for quality work and technical expertise. However, as their business straddled multiple different sub-sectors of the industry – including luxury residential estates (with clients like the Royal House of Saud), industrial facilities (clients including SpaceX, Boeing, & Cigna), and commercial developments – the company lacked a consistency and clarity in brand image, resulting in confusion for their clientele.

Additionally, now competing against major international conglomerates for large-scale work, the company also required a brand that would serve to differentiate them from their larger competitors, while also leaving a subtle implication of their superior suitability for these prospective clients (as it would be difficult to suggest their larger competitors were incapable of the same work).

To achieve these goals, I focused on crafting a strategic narrative that could subtly help to seed this value proposition and in finding a consistent brand voice and tone that would appear both professional and a bit “cheekier” than their competitors, at the same time. While it is certainly a balance in achieving this (when dealing with B2B clients in general, but even more so with technical offerings), I thought it would certainly be an endeavor worth braving the tight-rope. I came up with the idea of creating “vignettes” on the different business segments and company offerings, helping to educate the client, convey expertise to the client, and simplify the business, achieving clarity for the client. These vignettes could then be slotted into client proposals, pitch documents, brochures, and online platforms, to give an immediate, visceral understanding of CED’s work within this space.

Additionally, I centered the brand around the concept of a “large-scale, local-origin” firm, appealing to both the required sense of professionalism and to the need for competitor differentiation (contrasting their California roots with the international conglomerates they compete against). In doing so, I placed focus on California’s complex, regionally-specific, set of regulations, subtly implying that a California-based company would better-navigate such complexity than locally-ignorant international firms. The result was fun and engaging to create, fulfilling both a strategic brand need and a creative (and somewhat “cheeky”) tone.