Rebranding the modern mission

See how New Kind and Mark43 teamed up to build a brand for the new world of public safety

Background

Mark43 is on a mission to revolutionize the world of public safety. The complete, always-ready, cloud-based platform is purpose-made for those who choose to serve — helping save time in the field, simplify records management, and keep communities safe.

What started in a Harvard classroom had grown, in just a few short years, to become a powerful force of positive change in an industry desperately in need of disruption. Public safety professionals nationwide rely on Mark43 software to help them do their jobs safely and more efficiently than ever.

Now firmly established as a trusted leader in the space, the time had arrived to shed their startup skin — to solidify their brand story and reimagine their visual identity — and equip the company for their next stage of growth.

Industries: Technology

Services: Identity System, Research, Storytelling

Research

A primer on public safety

 

In order to develop a brand story and identity that would resonate across the world of public safety — from first responders to chiefs of police, dispatch technicians to records staff — we knew we first needed to immerse ourselves in their world.

Interviews with Mark43 team members and customers yielded important insights that would inform our work. An extensive brand survey allowed us to find patterns between internal and external perceptions of the current brand, identifying gaps and opportunities for evolution.

The research phase culminated with a day-long in-person workshop at Mark43 headquarters in New York City. New Kind and Mark43 team members worked together closely to define the company’s core brand strategy: key customer personas, competitive positioning, and core brand story themes — all of which served as the foundation for further brand development.

Story and Messaging

The power in simplicity

 

Emerging from our research was the key insight that Mark43’s true value for public safety professionals is its unique ability to blend power and simplicity. Too many of the legacy software providers in the space offer heavy, inflexible, and outdated solutions not fit for today’s public safety professional.

Where Mark43 software shines is in its unique ability to bring the power of modern, cloud-based capabilities that go anywhere the job takes you, delivered in a purpose-built user interface that helps public safety professionals do their job — not just get in the way.

This high-level narrative gave rise to Mark43’s Big Brand Message:

Powerfully simple. Purposefully smart.

From this overarching story we then developed the rest of the Mark43 platform messaging around four fundamental, research-inspired differentiators:

Shared commitment. Intuitive software. Continuous innovation. Accessible insight.

All uniquely ownable by the brand, the software, and the team that makes it all happen. Rooted in what Mark43 has always stood for, yet also aspirational enough to build for the future.

Identity design

The shield that protects

 

Our story and messaging work inspired the design of the new Mark43 brand identity (an approach we take for all of our projects). We audited the competitive brandscape, seeing where Mark43’s new look needed to fit in and find opportunities where it could stand out.

As we began to design the identity, one challenge we faced was being able to connect with the world of public safety, but avoid being overly literal with the visual elements — lights and sirens, doom and gloom imagery. We needed the identity to show how Mark43 is reimagining public safety software. 

A wide range of concepts and iterations ultimately led to a mark that we call “The Infinite Shield.” The new mark represents the many agencies that Mark43 empowers on a daily basis, providing a continuous foundation for their services — now and into the future.

The Infinite Shield is the badge that unites and signifies Mark43, worn proudly by those who serve our public servants. We designed a custom logotype to unify the numbers and letters in the name and refreshed Mark43’s brand typeface to create a cohesive experience across written materials.

We intentionally built the visual system to be flexible and scalable as Mark43 grows. Illustrative visuals helped convey the powerful-yet-simple promise of their software, while defining standards for photo treatments allowed the marketing team to showcase images of real people and places while staying firmly in the world of Mark43. 

Outcomes

Equipping new leaders for lasting impact

 

Outfitted with a mission-aligned visual identity and a powerful new story to tell, Mark43 can confidently meet that challenge, stand out from the competition, and win more customers.

Mark43 also attends and sponsors dozens of industry events each year. These touchpoints are opportunities to reach public safety professionals crucial to the growth of the company, and another venue where their refreshed brand comes to life.

Creating innovative software to help transform the world of public safety is no small task. But this is the mission that drives Mark43  — to serve those who choose to serve our communities every day. We at New Kind are proud and honored to have played a small part in helping them do it.

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