Asterisk's premium-ised brand identity
Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Several months after successfully delivering a brand identity for Asterisk's Forex Hedge Fund in February last year Asterisk made a dramatic change to their offering that required a re-think of the brand I created for them.

Instead of aiming for a mass online market dealing in Forex markets with no minimum investment, the new offering was to be aimed at high net-worth private investors with a minimum investment of 100 000 Euros. The new offering would still trade on Forex markets but the bulk of trades (90%) would be in Futures. And so, I recommended that we 'premium-ise' the Asterisk brand.

Although Asterisk was born of a Forex concept we decided to retain the name and I was commissioned to 'premium-ise' the brand identity and find a new brand-idea and create a more comprehensive look & feel. I delivered two routes and the brand identity concept expressing the brand-idea 'Trading Insight' was selected.

I created a new symbol that is a more sophisticated interpretation of an asterisk, whereas the previous symbol was unambiguously an asterisk and more suited to a mass market. The new symbol requires a dynamic presentation of a simple line-drawn asterisk revealed as circles side-on to grasp the fact that the symbol is an Asterisk. The static symbol of the brandmark is at a stage somewhere before the circles in perspective open completely to form a complete circle, and the resulting sequence forms a sophisticated visual pattern for use as a premium brand identity element. The dynamic presentation of the symbol is required to grasp the insight that the new symbol is, in fact, an asterisk.

The 'Trading Insight' brand-idea is an interpretation of the insights required to trade in the manner in which the new investment fund is to become known. The re-imagined Asterisk brand trades in Futures using a proprietary and copyright protected trading system that utilises sophisticated trading techniques and computer software to enable traders to trade visually – to literally trade in sight. This trading system gives Asterisk's traders a real advantage over competing investment funds and so as an expression of the 'Trading Insight' brand-idea the public-facing brandline is 'The insight advantage'.

The 'premium-ised' version of the Asterisk brand was launched to private investors in September last year. For the launch I also oversaw the production of a high-production values brochure. I wrote the bulk of the content, all the bold headline messages and worked with an editor who edits for the Financial Times to sharpen-up and enhance the body-text.

Click on the brandmark or dynamic symbol pattern above to view the project as an entry in my portfolio. I've also included the previous Asterisk Forex brand identity to demonstrate the different versions of the brand as expressions of distinctly different brand strategies.