Research + Brand Identity | Design brief to mock-up branding
Freelance project for a client’s entrepreneurial endeavor based out of Ft. Worth, Texas. Original business concept as a bubble tea cafe.
Client: Andrew Tran
My client, Andrew, planned on opening up a bubble tea store in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Area. He selected his store location to be in downtown Fort Worth due to the large amounts of foot traffic occuring in the area (tourism, restaurants). Timeline to opening was between six and eight months. After our initial phone consult, we determined his brand values and target users (millenials + tourists). Andrew planned on the interior design to include dark wood and possibly brick. He did not want an industrial feel.
Competitive Analysis and Market Research
85C Bakery was the closest direct bubble tea competitor, however they primarily focused on Korean bakery pastries rather than bubble tea. Other bubble-tea focused companies in the area lacked a contemporary feel or were located far from Magnolia Avenue. Other competitors (coffee shops and dessert shops) lacked free wifi, seating, or a contemporary feel in addition to no bubble tea options. Findings were communicated to Andrew for consideration when building the store.
I conceptualized logo sketches based on our determined “feel” of the brand as well as an inclusion of a character as instructed by the client. Playing on the name as well as brand identity descriptions, I created logo variations based off a “smith” of tea. Initial concepts had a retro feel with a touch of whimsy.
Preliminary logo sketches
First Logo Iteration
I presented initial logo concepts to Andrew on our second phone meeting. Andrew preferred the monocled character, which was supported by user survey results.
After our initial brainstorming session, Andrew was torn between company name ideas including Mr. Tea, The Teasmith, and Pearl Teasmith. After polling six individuals who reported getting boba at least once every few weeks, I found that all preferred the name, “The Teasmith”. However 2-3 of these individuals suggested dropping “the” to make the name, “Teasmith”. I recommended name changes to Andrew, who agreed after being presented with poll results.
6/6 polled users preferred “The Teasmith”
Top logos as polled by users
I changed the logo to reflect the company’s new name. I also tweaked the look of the character in favor of client preferences (switched the character’s glasses to a monocle). User research supported this redesign as the majority of polled users preferred the typography and border elements of the finalized logo, but equally preferred a glasses vs. monocled character.
Final Branding and Mood Board
I selected mood board elements and stock photos based off of Teasmith’s company descriptors: “inviting”, “natural”, and “quality”. I used green to highlight a “natural” feel to mimic nature, along with brick and dark wood, rustic elements to make the space cozy and “inviting”. I used lighter colors to balance the dark tones (green, brown) of the color palette. Contemporary touches to emanate “quality”.