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After almost thirty years in the Learning & Development industry, we knew it was time to refresh the Ardent brand to align with our goals and growth. During a deep-dive into our brand, we noted a disconnect between our love for learners and the heavy influence of technology in the Learning & Development industry. Despite an obvious need to showcase these technologies, we believe the focus needed to remain on the heart of corporate training: the learner.
An additional intention in Ardent’s brand refresh was an emphasis on humanizing corporate training through custom learning solutions that focus on the outcomes for the learner. While Ardent continues to expand into a diversified set of industry verticals, it was imperative not to lose sight of the fact that people are at the heart of every organizational shift.
After our self-discovery sessions, we sat down, rolled up our sleeves, and created a plan to be bold, push the envelope, and emphasize the humanity in learning.
During the research and discovery phase of Ardent’s brand refresh, we dove deep into what makes Ardent unique—and, unsurprisingly, we realized that what made our company so special is our employees. We then outlined our company’s core values: imagination, tenacity, integrity, boldness, nimbleness and humility. While these values are what make us human, every organization has the same backbone—their people. We used this approach to create a brand that humanizes a sometimes-too-sterile industry. Through conversational tone, jargon-free messaging, innovative design and a genuine social presence, we crafted a brand that is not only driving impact but is unapologetically ardent about learning.
A key component of our brand refresh was ensuring that Ardent’s internal team was aligned with our brand position—including our Account and Business Directors. Brand guidelines were designed and distributed to the company, which included both internal and external templates (to ensure visual branded elements were consistent). We established clear sales enablement pieces and marketing collateral, including sell sheets, white papers, case studies, infographics, business cards, capability presentations, and more.
We also developed a new website (the one you're reading this blog post on!). To monitor business in these new verticals, we implemented a new marketing platform to help create a streamlined experience for prospects and clients alike. Our marketing platform (HubSpot) ensured communications were branded visually and for voice and tone. Each of our Account and Business Directors went through a rigorous training process to provide a working knowledge of how to communicate with and nurture to leads.
Along with internal training, we knew that applying a modern, creative flare to all external collateral was crucial for awareness in the market. Our team of Creatives created thoughtful, intentional pieces that would stand out against the competition. Each deliverable aims to strike the right balance between style and substance, with bold colors, purposeful typography, authentic imagery, and imagination.
Designing and implementing a brand refresh isn't a one-time-deal. Our brand will continue to grow and evolve, and we're excited to see where it takes us! We're big believers in data-driven decisions, so the next few months will be dedicated to watching, tracking and analyzing the data that our new website, social media presence, marketing efforts, and creative components bring in. Plus, to bring us full-circle, we're excited to hear feedback from our clients!