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ChaiNext

From China with love

What did they want?

ChaiNext is a Chinese technology startup composed of top experts and engineers from the financial industry. ChaiNext is a global leading indices and investment analysis tools provider, and is committed to building the MSCI of blockchain and token market. They sought after a Nordic design angle for their brand and website, and were looking for a partner to help them launch globally.

 

 

Summary
Client

ChaiNext

Year

2018

Industry

Finance & Technology

Project

Brand & Website

Cost

A couple of Bitcoins

WHAT DID THEY NEED?

ChaiNext was in dire need of consultancy over how to tell their story and humanise it. Instead of being just another technology startup, they needed to establish themselves as a force to be reckoned with. In addition, they needed a clear and simple website and web presence that would enforce the brand message, inform their audience about their services and ultimately convert them into paying customers.

After interviewing the client on their ideas of the brand and the structure of the website, through benchmarking and asking questions to inform our design process, we realised that there was a lot of work to be done in terms of translating and expanding their personal visions – stemming from Chinese culture – to the entire globe.

Brand Identity

The brand identity was a challenge, for it had to serve many purposes. It should be appealing to a very wide audience, both in China and globally. We thought that it should focus on the global audience, since that is where they would potentially attract most of their customers. We wanted to help our client stand out, but still be recognised within their industry so this was a matter of combining technology startup conventions with something completely new and unique.

Website

We didn’t want to reinvent the wheel, but create something easy to use and above all easy to understand. The website should work as an expanded business card that gives you all the vital information as quickly as possible. However, it should also exhibit a snippet of one of their main product: real time token index. An important thing to remember here was to lend the tone of voice from the brand and communicate high level expertise in an approachable and relatable manner.

ChaiNext was in dire need of consultancy over how to tell their story and humanise it. Instead of being just another technology startup, they needed to establish themselves as a force to be reckoned with.
After interviewing the client on their ideas of the brand and the structure of the website, through benchmarking and asking questions to inform our design process, we realised that there was a lot of work to be done in terms of translating and expanding their personal visions – stemming from Chinese culture – to the entire globe.
The key insight we got from the project was about communicating expertise with an approachable way. We envisioned ChaiNext as a person, what would they be like? How would they talk and walk? What kind of a person would be both loved and respected? We then came up with the idea of a mentor: someone who is respected for their experience and achievements, yet loved for their kind heart and pedagogic approach.

WHAT DID WE DO?

Before starting to build the website we started by establishing their brand narrative: Vision and values. We interviewed our client and learnt about their most important target segment, who they wanted to direct their services and message to. This lead to an exploration on what it should represent.

We combined their team’s personalities and ways of working with our expertise and consulted them in how they should go about maintaining a coherent and consistent brand from values to customer touch points. We then created wireframes to establish the information structure and feature list for the website. We applied their new brand onto the website layouts at a later stage.

Brand

The key insight we got from the project was about communicating expertise with an approachable way. We envisioned ChaiNext as a person, what would they be like? How would they talk and walk? What kind of a person would be both loved and respected? We then came up with the idea of a mentor: someone who is respected for their experience and achievements, yet loved for their kind heart and pedagogic approach. This kind of a mentor-apprentice relationship was also something our client could relate to.

It was important to our client that their logo represented technology, links and unlimited future. We lent symbolism from Chinese culture, like the yin yang, and a spiral nebula for technology and unlimited future. We used shades of blue to communicate technology and brought organic shapes to create a balance between technology and human.

All of the above were compiled into a comprehensive brand book with the entire brand narrative, visuals and mockups for social media and stationery.

What did we learn?

Working in a cross-cultural team
Chinese business culture
Branding for finance and technology
Creating a comprehensive brand book
Working with multiple developers

Trouble launching internationally?

Don’t worry, we know what to do!