The Brand Prix

It’s not the brand hall of fame, but when you get yours on the rear wing of a Formula 1 car, it sure feels like you’ve created something very special. This year I get to experience that 21 times as one of my favorite brand creations, Huski Chocolate travels around the world on the new McLaren F1 carS.

McLaren’s 2019 race car, the MCL34.  Images by McLaren

McLaren’s 2019 race car, the MCL34. Images by McLaren

I designed the Huski brand together with my dear colleague and friend Antti Asumaa. We started all the way from brand positioning and strategy. Antti came up with the original name Huski Chocolate Rescue, which was later shortened to Huski Chocolate. We created and polished the concept, story, core values – the whole nine yards. Antti wrote all the captivating key-messaging and I designed the brand look and feel. Not just snazzy graphics and snappy one-liners, but a carefully designed story that has a place in this world.

A brand is a lot like an engineered race car. Every designer knows that after you release a brand out to the tracks, a lot of industry people and the client will meddle with it. A brand will and should be supercharged and fine-tuned along the way, and designers just have to be ok with that. However, tinker with it too much and it will eventually start hitting the curb. When that happens, it’s not just the designers’ feelings that get hurt, it will start hurting the value of the brand, and the business it drives.

Luckily, I’ve always (mostly) been blessed with smart clients who come back for regular pit stops, and ask help in keeping the brand on track and the podium. Huski Chocolate is one of them. During the past year, I’ve helped Huski declutter and update some elements of their brand visuals, and designed their first ready-to-drink package sleeve. All in good time to prepare the brand for its world tour from Melbourne to Monza.

When was the last time you had your brand serviced? Do you take better care of your car than your brand? Both of them will lose value if you do nothing. The difference is, the other one will be a lot more valuable after a good tune-up.