We are an adult social care provider, looking after elderly and disabled people in their own homes in East London (UK). Our customers in the marketing sense are not the old people, but their children (people in their 40/50s), their carers, their doctors, community centre leaders, social workers, local (political) councillors, physiotherapists, pharmacists and other REFERERS who will refer us to the elderly people. It will be rare that our direct service user (our real customer, the elderly) will have any contact with our materials. If they do, it will probably just be the brochure/leaflet.
So the purpose:
1. Logo (and in the future, brochure and website) need to communicate to customers that we are a professional firm.
2. The logo needs to showcase our ethical business credentials (and in the longer term our co-op credentials) to the social enterprise and media sectors.
Our brand values (and potential strapline) are care, compassion and community. The last two are values that have disappeared from the social care sector. I love the concept of compassion and I want to lift it up from the sickly place it's at now and get people to start really thinking about it and implementing it in their daily lives.
Another key brand element is empathy - my blog is called Empathic Urbanite and it will chart my journey in building this company and trying to make impacts in the local community above and beyond our core work. Being professional carers does not mean being distant - it must contain friendship, nurture, compassion and empathy. We should not be ashamed of that, I lament the public sector delivery that today wants us to maintain distance and not get involved with people's lives. If you look after someone every single day for 10 years, you SHOULD be their friend, you should be able to go round for a chat with their daughter. I don't think this does threaten your professionalism. Today's care sector has completely taken community out of the picture and I want to correct that.
The company is called Three Sisters Care because it is run by three sisters! We believe it has great branding potential. I know family values can be restrictive, conservative etc but it can also be positive, especially when we're talking sisters. We think a family run business in this sector (otherwise full of distant fat cats) is a big advantage and we want to play up the whole nuturing, caring element inherent in sisterly-ness. Also most of our workers will be women and so the brand needs to be feminine (in a strong, earthy way, not a pink frilly way - ew).