Changing the way that an entire nation views a problem is more than most brand strategiesÂ can accomplish. However, tasked with the enormous burden of educating a nation to save its life, Alzheimerâ€™s Australia was equal to the task.
Scary Fact: By the year 2030 the number one disease that kills Australians will not be cancer or heart disease, but Alzheimerâ€™s disease.
Scarier Fact: Until recently, the Australian government would not even recognise Alzheimerâ€™s as a chronic disease.
Enter: Alzheimerâ€™s Australia.
Since the 1980s, a federation of state-based awareness groups has fought to make Alzheimerâ€™s disease a household name and propel it to the top of the list among national health priorities and initiatives. Collectively, this group of agencies, called Alzheimerâ€™s Australia, have been ill rewarded for their efforts, however, ranking at number 112 for donations in 2011. With statistics like those featured above, it is clear that something needed to changeâ€¦perhaps a rebrand?
The rebranding of Alzheimerâ€™s Australia had more riding on it than a bottom line. Fighting for lives, the goal was, as CEO Glenn Rees so eloquently put, to â€˜put a bloody great big bomb under the problemâ€™. This was a rebranding not of a company, but of a disease, with the goal set not at profits, but eradication.
The response to this challenge is both simple and elegant. Focusing on only two coloursâ€”aqua and whiteâ€”and often using only four, revolving words, the purpose of the new brand was not graphics, but attitude. With this simple rebrand, Alzheimerâ€™s Australia created a flexible visual image that revolved around communicating their name, identifying a problem, and rallying the troops with strong calls to action.
They also made their image simple and merchandisable in order to appeal to other businesses as commercial partners. Examples include:
- Fight Alzheimerâ€™s. Save Australia.
- Understand Alzheimerâ€™s. Educate Australia.
- Banish Alzheimerâ€™s. Embrace Australia.
- Talk Alzheimerâ€™s Across Australia.
This is a fantastic example of the immense power of good visual branding. The idea was to make the visual details rotational, to focus on more than name and galvanise a nation around a problem that will only get worse if we ignore it. In short, they had to transform the unspoken into the unforgettable.