Renaissance relaunches ‘to inject some new energy into the brand’

Who: Renaissance (the Quebec chapter of Goodwill International), with Forsman & Bodenfors Canada.

What: A new brand identity for the non-profit that includes store design, employee uniforms, as well as its annual report and other corporate communications tools. It is a staged rollout that is expected to be complete within five years.

The rebrand is accompanied by an awareness campaign for the organization’s annual fall fundraising initiative encouraging people to donate unwanted, gently used clothing and household goods.

When & Where: The brand redesign was introduced this month, while the campaign broke last month running across TV, print and OOH.

Why: It’s about updating the organization’s visual identity, which CEO Éric St-Arnaud said had become “a bit scattered” in recent years, with some components growing outdated.

“Our new brand image will help us position ourselves as a leader of the social economy, and continue to generate awareness for our mission,” he said. “We want the new brand image to inject some new energy into the brand and reach a diversified client-base. We are aware that the younger demographic, millennials specifically, is less interested in Renaissance compared to our competition.”

About the new brand identity: The new brand is built around a circle containing the letters “RE,” which are a key part of the brand’s slogan “Redonnez vos choses. Redonnex un emploi,” which translates as “Donate your things. Give someone a job.” All of the revenue generated by Renaissance stores is reinvested in the organization’s social mission of integrating people into the workforce.

The company has opened two stores featuring the updated branding since May, and has replaced the front signage for six donation centres and two bookstores.

About the new campaign: The campaign is anchored by a video spot that provides an overhead perspective of the literally hundreds of items that come in (and out) of people’s lives as they grow older or grow bored with them, from teddy bears and baby clothes, to hobby items like bicycles, guitars, skis and snowboards, and professional items like suits and briefcases. The spot concludes with a group of items that eventually form the “R” in the Renaissance name.

Print ads show pictures of people’s (overstuffed) wardrobe, accompanied by the message that most of us only wear about 20% of our clothes, while the remaining 80% has the potential to generate up to 800 jobs per year through donations.

“The campaign is based on a simple insight: we all own more objects and clothes than we use and our wardrobes are overflowing,” said Fabien Loszach, vice-president of strategy for Forsman & Bodenfors.

And we quote: “It’s highly rewarding when design helps find a solution to a business. In Renaissance’s case, it’s even more gratifying to know that our work truly helped the organization better communicate its mission and better serve the communities” — Minh Nguyen, senior art director, Forsman & Bodenfors

Chris Powell