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Xpel by Forward Edge

We learned through our research and interviews that the Forward Edge brand name carries significant weight in the industry, so we aligned to a naming strategy that embraced endorsement. The chief insight that would lead the naming and branding process was the idea that IT professionals in schools do not have the time or expertise to focus on cybersecurity as they are often responsible for managing both the operational and educational technology infrastructure for hundreds, if not thousands. The metaphor we used was the need for “liberation,” the desire to be free of the anxieties of cyber threats so they could focus on their core duties knowing that an expert team has their back. We explored names that evoked this sense of freedom from fear, ultimately landing on the word, Xpel, which enabled us to reference the educational environment (i.e. the thing that happens to a seriously misbehaving student), while communicating the idea of eradication, jettisoning, or throwing out.

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Brand

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The visual language for the brand flowed naturally from the research and naming, which revealed opportunities to stand out subtly while remaining true to the message and category. The needle we sought to thread was one that traversed a world of SOC teams, security dashboards, and technology, while providing a cleaner and less bleak energy for their audience to latch onto. We sought visual professionalism and organization, angularity and dimensionality.

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Our illustrative style, which utilizes isometric angles and gradients provides much-needed modernization and cleanliness to the tried and true flat colorful graphic illustration styles typical of the Education category. We considered color almost as deeply as we considered our primary logo with its subtly extruded rhombus creating the illusion of dimensionality. We looked at many different colors and shades, considering and discussing meaning and intent. Early on we considered intentionally avoiding red since it was so prevalent in the category. After much discussion we decided to embrace the meaning: a “red team” is the industry term for a group of professionals engaged in offensive tactics designed to root out bad digital actors. We chose a shade that was richer than it was bright, again to hit on approachability and cleanliness as opposed to negativity and fear.

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Collateral

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Brochure

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Presentation Deck

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Conference Banner

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Conference Swag

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