BUILDING A NEW
Big Top is a software company that connects startups and individuals within the Triangle. We helped them reposition their new brand and build their innovative software platform.
We then launched into our overall brand process, leaning into our strategic discovery tools: lean canvassing, color & type boards, and mark prototyping.
Breaking Color Rules
Using this new found inspiration, we deviated from the classic color paradigm of Primary, Accent, & Base palettes and instead focused on a larger array of primary colors.
Awesome Textures, Bad Idea
In order to help balance the attention of competing colors and to bring some liveliness into the brand, we attempted to use high contrast textures – a lot of them. Our hope was that by pushing the bounds of what we considered “organized chaos,” we could communicate a vibrant energy.
What We Got
In the end we know we got it right, especially when we applied this identity to all the other moving pieces of the Big Top brand.
Aligning Strategy with Engineering
After completing the new brand, our team started helping the Big Top team engineer a software platform that was aligned to their business strategy. Doing that required using discovery exercises to stay on top of unfolding requirements and to fundamentally champion the whole Big Top business, not just its product, marketing, or sales verticals.
Building custom software is an inherently risky endeavor, even more so once ideas hit the keyboards of engineers. To mitigate the risk, especially in the earliest phase of a startup, we use product-crafting tools like story mapping, wireframing, and release planning, to cheaply iterate on ideas before they become dollar signs. For Big Top, we mapped out how the business-aligned product would function and how to effectively get there.
High Fidelity User Testing
Once we had a fairly strong idea on what to build, we took it to our product designers to develop a non-functioning, clickable prototype. This served two purposes. First, a chance to show investors what the team had been developing and second, a chance to test our problem/solution hypotheses on real users. This proved invaluable in leading us to our current product.
Our engineers worked hand-in-hand with the Big Top team to flesh out the platform we had all envisioned earlier. With frequent touch-ins and expert business guidance from the Big Top directors, we were able to time successful product releases to live events, and continue to do so today.