Outreach through Outcomes

Outreach through Outcomes

Raffa was a large Washington, DC based financial services firm that was looking to differentiate itself from the pack. Most proposals from such firms look the same and sound the same. Also, it is easy to develop the impression that, because so much of the work, such as audit and accounting, would seem to be “zeroes and ones,” that pretty much any firm would come up with the same answer to “two plus two.” As we dug into the work, it became quickly apparent that there were significant differences between Raffa and their competition.

Outreach through Outcomes

Brand Strategy

Raffa was a large Washington, DC based financial services firm that was looking to differentiate itself from the pack. Most proposals from such firms look the same and sound the same. Also, it is easy to develop the impression that, because so much of the work, such as audit and accounting, would seem to be “zeroes and ones,” that pretty much any firm would come up with the same answer to “two plus two.” As we dug into the work, it became quickly apparent that there were significant differences between Raffa and their competition.

Firstly, the founder and CEO, Tom Raffa, was and is a powerhouse of philanthropy. His dedication to expanding the power effect of non-profits is unparalleled. – and many facets of the company reflected this image. Secondly, the majority of the clients of Raffa were, in turn, non-profits. Third, the essence of the firm was suffused with helping non-profits be as effective as possible as they sought to enact their mission.

This energy and dedication led to the Raffa tagline: Do More.

The tagline works on 3 levels: It is an affirmation to each of us to Do More for our community. It is a recognition of the fact that Raffa and its staff Do More to assist non-profits in their mission. And, in turn, non-profits will be able to Do More to help those that they serve.

Logo

The previous logo for Raffa was very dated in design and also in block capitals. The new logo was changed to be a stylized signature.  We felt that this reflected the warmth and humanity of Raffa but also begged the question: “is Raffa a person?” – Any question that led to a conversation about Tom Raffa was going to lead to a strong possibility of more business or, at the very least, an obvious differentiator between Raffa and other firms in the same marketplace.

The visual signature

Most financial firms color palette and photo selections are driven by them wanting to tell you about themselves. August colors, prim photography. With Raffa, we did not want the story to be about what they do, as much as what happens because of what they do. Colors were warm and the photography inspired with an outward-facing look at what clients were achieving in the community while standing on the bedrock of the services provided by Raffa.

This let Raffa’s clients (and prospective clients) know that they were the focus, not chest-thumping by a financial services firm.

We also added a secondary tagline: Helping great organizations Thrive.

 

Brochure and proposal holder

As we saw it, the average financial services proposal was “two inches of boredom.” – Many sheets of paper with the endless sea of type detailing the offered services. We wanted to make a statement that, out of the gate, Raffa was different.

We solved this with an arresting brochure, that opened up to present a thumb-drive on which the proposal was saved.  There were cutouts in the brochure that highlighted words from the Raffa Brand Book that shaped and perimitered the Raffa identity, such as “create” “imagine” “succeed” and “Thrive.” The photography, reflecting the website, told the story of Raffa’s clients.

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