Wellby

Building a next-generation community bank

In mid-2020, JSC Federal Credit Union, founded at the legendary NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, offered us the opportunity to help transform their much loved 60-year-old brand into a new breed of financial service, highly digitized and explicitly inclusive of the needs of the broader community.

The Solution

Working closely with the executive team with a highly collaborative engagement model, we developed a new brand strategy, the name, and extensive verbal and visual identities. We continue to support them as they transition to their new digital financial platform that serves the immensely diverse Houston market—and beyond.

Brand strategy

We worked with the leadership team led by CXO Hillary Law to solidify a brand strategy framework to form the basis for the brand identity, including establishing the new brand's values and behaviors.

The new organization aspired to create positive impact for their community, members, membership, and team—building a purpose-driven culture was critical to achieving this. Supermoon created a Social Impact Framework that is purpose-driven and action oriented. It focuses leaders and team members on the values and behaviors that set the tone for their culture, bring the purpose to life, clarify priorities, and guide decision-making.

Naming

Naming is always a tough challenge in crowded categories like technology and finance. Supermoon works closely with some of the most experienced naming professionals in the United States to ensure names are memorable, strategically powerful and emotionally resonant, and most importantly, truly ownable.

The name Wellby was eventually selected after a thorough process involving the creation of over a thousand name options, shortlisting and internal alignment, consumer testing, linguistic checks and trademark investigation. A simple, highly approachable, and "human" name, Wellby was extremely well-received in consumer research, implying (financial) wellness, empathy and support.

Verbal identity

The comprehensive Wellby verbal identity system includes a messaging platform, tone-of-voice, and directive copy examples.

These allow the Wellby team to effectively communicate the personality and intent of the new brand to various audiences including current and future members, internal teams and new recruits, and the wider Houston and Texas community through marketing and outreach. We also delivered tailored training sessions created together with Wellby's communications team.

Visual identity

Building on a brand strategy that connects with Wellby member dreams, Houston's highly diverse communities, and the pre-transformation company's close historical connections to space exploration and engineering, our visual identity was inspired by the concept of "lifting off".

Bold, bright Wellby Violet positions the brand as dynamic, inclusive, and contemporary—clearly different to the traditional red-white-and-blue that most Texas banks sport.

The logo is reflective of Wellby's ambition, as well as visually positioning it squarely among the new generation of digital-first financial services. We ran extensive consumer testing and responses to the final selection brought almost exclusively positive comments including "makes me think the bank is always moving forward" and "it feels like everyone can be involved".

As a logo designed for the 2020s and beyond, the symbol is designed from the start to support digital application, motion and movement, and the ability to flex for any future needs.

Graphic language

Building on the essential graphic form of a circle, which is repeated throughout Wellby's identity system as an indicator of both inclusiveness and their action-driven approach, we created a toolkit of beautiful patterns and circular motifs to illustrate everything from machine learning to service center locations. Applications range from annual reports and presentation templates through to desktops, clothing, and the ubiquitous tote bag.

Illustration

Working closely with Wellby's design team, our design team created illustration concepts and defined the hierarchy of the illustration system, from hero images through to product badges and functional iconography. The below images are based on the selected concepts and created by Wellby's talented internal team for usage in the final deliverables.

Environmental design

As part of identity development we explored how the graphic system could be applied to interior environments including solutions centers and office spaces as well as outdoor signage. Watch this space for some exciting new real-world applications in coming years.

Guidelines

We bring more than two decades experience defining core brand systems for multi-channel deployment, helping designers and marketers to execute consistently across all touchpoints. For Wellby, we documented all decisions in an extensive set of brand guidelines covering the core brand strategy, verbal and visual identities, as well as recommendations for digital execution and visual application examples.

Collateral and templates

Effective brand management is a challenge for any organization with multiple internal departments. We supported Wellby in providing both "high-brand" and practical day-to-day collateral templates for presentations and member communication.

Brand training

As part of the extensive engagement we have enjoyed with the good people at Wellby, we developed and led live training sessions to support departmental leads as they bring their teams up to speed with the new brand. Our training sessions are recorded for onboarding future employees.

Results

While Wellby is set to launch its new intuitive banking experience in October, the brand has been well-received by members, local community, and the financial services industry.  

“Supermoon helped us move from a defined purpose to a brand expression that represents our history and future. Their team is incredibly collaborative and worked with our team members to create a brand name and identity that will help us live out our purpose. Wellby honors our legacy with space in our new logo, inspired by the Andromeda galaxy, and also conveys what we're all about - our members' financial well-being.”

- Hillary Law, Chief Experience Officer