Case Study: MHPM Project Managers Inc. Rebranding

Adhawk Communications has been agency of record for MHPM Project Managers, which is the largest specialist project management company in Canada, since 1993. Branding was an itch that the company had avoided scratching despite the unravelling of its corporate brand over the years. However, as the company expanded across Canada and into the United States and North Africa, branding became a critical factor. In 2008, Adhawk was assigned the task of rebranding the company.

After an intensive research and surveying phase, it was established that leadership of projects, not management of projects, was what set MHPM apart. This messaging had high validation with key stakeholders. Working with the president and his delegated representatives, Adhawk successfully carried out a multi-step rebranding process that culminated in a repositioned corporate name, corporate logo and related design assets, and corporate tagline:

Adhawk developed branding design collateral that featured duotone images of “real life” project leaders at work. One of the first external products of this rebranding process was an exhibit and associated banner stands. The exhibit creative brief required us to introduce the new branding and the company’s entry into sustainable building (LEED). The banner stands, which would be used in conjunction with the main exhibit or without it promoted three sector-based verticals and one careers/human resources theme. Either together or used alone, the exhibits and the banner stands successfully communicated MHPM’s leadership theme.

The rebranding project marked an important watershed in company development. It was a pivotal part of MHPM’s enhanced internal and external marketing, and signalled this company’s new status as a significant national and international player.

Steps in the branding process

This project spanned about six months. It was rolled out to internal staff in a road show led by the president. Adhawk designed a booklet that introduced the brand to staff and which remains in use for “MHPM University” today. We also created a branding guide and editorial style guide, and developed an extensive system of templates to ensure that all MHPM materials communicated the corporate brand and messaging.

  • Phase 1: Discovery—establish scope and budget
  • Phase 2: Key informant interviews and competitor review
  • Phase 3: Develop positioning statement
  • Phase 4: Positioning statement testing
  • Phase 5: Refine messaging, tag line and survey
  • Phase 6: Seminar with key clients to discuss positioning
  • Phase 7: Synthesize and present
  • Phase 8: Design branding concepts
  • Phase 9: Present branding to executive team
  • Phase 10: Revise branding concepts
  • Phase 11: Focus test branding—staff and selected clients
  • Phase 12: Revise and finalize concept
  • Phase 13: Present branding to vice presidents
  • Phase 14: Finalize & sign off
  • Phase 15: Design applications (corporate stationery, interior and exterior signage, reports, proposals, templates, etc.)
  • Phase 16: Write corporate branding style guide and presentation materials for president’s cross-country road show
  • Phase 17: Deliver archive files