Studio Dorien Franken on 3rdRisk's new corporate identity
September 15, 2023
0 min read
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In mid-January 2023, I received an e-mail from Bram Ketting, who wrote that his company, 3rdrisk, was transferring from a start-up to becoming a scale-up. The branding needed improvement to help the company grow into the next phase. He asked me If I wanted to help him.
I’ve been a designer, consultant, and strategy specialist for 17+ years, creating strategy-driven designs for companies that want to make a positive cultural, social, or ecological change.
Reading the e-mail, I found myself in doubt: what does a tech start-up company have to do with sustainability or change? Would this case fit my portfolio and beliefs?
The answer to this question came quickly: it has everything to do with people. The 3rdRisk software and platform enable people to connect, work, and collaborate better, whether with a colleague down the hall, people in distribution centers, or folks abroad. You need people to set things in motion, and a strong relationship is a vital starting point for change.
During a series of three strategy sessions where the 3rdRisk team and I broke down the brand bit by bit, I asked them ‘better’ questions instead of giving them ‘good’ answers. I challenged the team to consider the future: What does 3rdRisk truly stand for? What does it want to achieve and why? What can it contribute on a bigger scale, and how can they accomplish that? We laid out all the pieces and rebuilt the brand from scratch. And this is where something interesting happened. I noticed a red threat in all their feedback, an intrinsic ambition that glued everything together: the desire to connect people for a brighter tomorrow.
It became the starting point for the rebranding.
In my years working in media with brands of all shapes and sizes, I learned there is no quick fix for brand building. There’s only an honest way. It’s about breaking down the what, why, who, and when questions and looking for real answers. Only when you stop ‘selling’ and start ‘telling’ something interesting can arise. Be completely transparent, value authenticity, and don’t sugarcoat stuff. It’s the only way your brand becomes believable. And when people believe it, they connect with it, which creates long-term relationships.
The connecting part inspired me for the logo design. I wanted to modernize the brand and make it more approachable—less tech, more human. I hand-drew two letters’ c’ that became the letter ‘s’ in the logo, symbolizing connecting. Instead of photographing the team, I let Spanish illustrator Berto Martinez hand draw each team member. I turned the ‘connecting’ symbol into a logo mark, recognizable throughout the rebranding.
With their new identity, 3rdRisk is ready to build a brighter tomorrow. The story they are telling is real. And I’m proud of the result. The company will enable risk professionals to develop better relationships. And with better relationships, chances improve massively to build a future we can all be proud of.