MJ Insurance has focused on the future for more than 50 years. For clients, that means helping to manage risk and initiate the change that will take them to the next level. For employees, it means creating a culture where dreams are fostered, and personal goals are supported.
That’s not the norm in the insurance industry, and being different has always been a point of pride for the company. As older workers began to retire, however, MJ Insurance discovered a problem. Young recruits didn’t know much about the company, but they certainly had opinions about the industry, which they largely viewed as dull, stifling, and unfulfilling. To attract younger talent, MJ first had to overcome that perception.
Overcoming Dated Brand Perception
“We had to change the way people saw us,” said Britni Shrout, Executive Vice President of Marketing and Communications at MJ Insurance. “The insurance industry doesn’t always excite young people because they have a preconceived idea of what it’s like. We wanted to create something more representative of our business that better reflected our purpose, culture, and core values.”
As we talked the problem over with MJ, we agreed that there was a disconnect between who they were and how their branding represented them.
Our director of account service, Melissa Sunsdahl, agreed that change was needed. “MJ Insurance had the same look for a very long time. Their old logo served them well for many years, but it didn’t reflect who they truly were as a company. We wanted to help them do a better job communicating their culture through their branding. The company is all about having fun, personal fulfillment, and finding your passion. Our goal was to help carry that through.”
We’d previously helped to update the company’s positioning and messaging, but it was time for a full brand overhaul, from creating a new logo to developing a fresh identity system, including elements like brand colors and fonts. And with MJ about to move into new headquarters in Carmel, the timing was serendipitous.
“With the physical move, we also saw a chance to recreate our brand to be bold, new, and different,” Britni said. “We worked with Well Done to brainstorm and rethink our approach in a way that avoided typical corporate colors, and worked through countless iterations that ranged from the really safe to the really new—and maybe a little bit scary.”
A Full Brand Overhaul
In the end, MJ chose a bold, simple mark that utilizes negative space in a way rarely seen in the industry:
And with the updated logo as a starting point, we carried through the new design elements to develop fresh print collateral, as well as make updates to the secondary marks on brochures and ads.
Next came the digital designs. We started by making a few minor tweaks to the structure of the homepage. Although we kept most of the content areas the same, we took advantage of the opportunity to improve user experience ahead of the design overhaul.
Once those changes were in place, we then updated the visual style of the website to match the new branding. These digital updates were created in keeping with the print collateral, but translated for a better web presentation. The end result was a website that not only functioned better but also lived up to MJ’s new brand standards.
Out with the Old, in with the Bold
The process was more than a little collaborative—we worked closely with MJ to make sure they bought in to the creative design as it developed. Not only did MJ buy in, they embraced some of the boldest elements of our designs and committed to an overall aesthetic that was attractive and contemporary.
“The reaction has been overwhelmingly positive,” Britni said. “The whole experience was amazing, but we’ve been really pleased to have something different that better represents the brand and sparks good conversation.”
To see more of our work for MJ Insurance, check out the full brand portfolio.