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& National Trust

A series of internal brand films for the National Trust, designed to inspire and educate

 

We were approached by the National Trust to create two films that would help promote the critical role their branding plays in growing support for the charity. With a workforce of over 6000 working at national, regional and local levels, the National Trust wanted to drive advocacy by succinctly explaining why they have a brand identity and what it comprises of. With a set of written guidelines that holds over 100 pages it was apparent that we needed to overcome the barriers to proper brand usage by creating something inspiring and enjoyable.

Our first film sets out to establish the ‘why’ – why the National Trust has a brand identity, intended to inspire brand advocates and educate stakeholders in the benefits of a consistent visual language. The second was to cover the ‘what’ – what the core identity elements are and how they combine to help audiences identify who they are and what they do.

Examples of National Trust branding in use across multiple touchpoints

Building the story and visual direction

 

Before diving into script writing and storyboards, we began with a strategic and creative vision, distilling what it was we aimed to achieve, the challenges we faced and who the intended message was for.

From this we built a set of audio, motion graphics and animation principles that would sit cohesively alongside the existing brand guidelines.

Starting with an authentic voice

 

We wanted every detail of the films to feel authentic and very much a part of the people and places behind the brand. So, recorded at our neighbouring production studio, we called upon National Trust Countryside Manager – Gwen Potter for the narration of the films.

 

Voice over by Gwen Potter, Countryside Manager for Northumberland Coast and Farne Islands

Uncovering the history

 

In order to create a sense of pride within the brand identity we made sure to include the story behind it’s beginnings. This included the evolution of the iconic Oak Leaf and a spotlight on the bespoke typeface, ‘National Trust’, which was originally inspired by an inscription carved into stone at Stourhead.

Demonstrating creative flexibility

 

The National Trust need the flexibility to communicate with a variety of different audiences, from marketing material for children’s events, to posters and leaflets for elderly support groups.

We aimed to inspire designers and promote the flexibility of the brand colour palette by showcasing a range of evolving applications from fun and bright combinations to the more formal and mature.

Bringing the visual identity to life

 

The films have successfully captured the hearts and minds of thousands of employees, creative partners and volunteers across the Trust.

The films are currently showing on screens at the organisations headquarters which see’s hundreds of people pass threw it’s doors everyday. Following their success, further films for the National Trust are on the horizon – watch this space.

Design credit: National Trust | Photo credit: James Dobson
Design credit: National Trust | Photo credit: James Dobson