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#Opinion: Creating a new image for Berney Associés

Berney Associés unveiled a new look on 31 January 2019.

We discussed the re-branding with partner Laurent Berney and Hervé Rigal, a partner at the agency Base Design.

What’s the story behind Berney Associés’ new brand identity?

Laurent Berney: Berney Associés was founded in 1990. The firm’s identity hadn’t changed much since then and it was time to refresh our image. Just over a year ago, we started thinking about our identity and how we could convey the company’s personality more effectively. We wanted change and something new, but we also wanted to stay true to our roots. So it was something of an evolution, rather than a revolution.

And how would you describe the personality of Berney Associés?

Laurent Berney: We are a family-owned company and so good communication and relationships really matter to us. These values go beyond figures, and are part of our DNA. We have nearly 150 employees, and all of these talented people make up Berney Associés. This is a company on a human scale, but one that is also performance-focused, proactive, rigorous, and in tune with its clients and the region.

Why did you choose Base Design?

Laurent Berney: We contacted six agencies before choosing Base Design. We wanted the entire rebranding process to be done with a single provider, but didn’t want to work with an agency that was too large. We liked Base Design’s professional and creative approach, as well as its personality. At Berney Associés, we build relationships based on trust with our clients and suppliers, and that matters to us.

Hervé Rigal: It was very exciting for our agency to work with Berney Associés. It also offered us a fantastic challenge: creating a powerful brand universe for the accounting and tax advisory field — which is not, by definition, very visual. Berney Associés’ faith in us meant that we could make bold proposals and develop an identity that stands out.

How did you construct this new identity?

Hervé Rigal: We started with the realisation that the image of Berney Associés no longer matched the men and women within the business. Berney Associés is made up of strong, dynamic and great personalities. Their energy and commitment had to be reflected more effectively in the new identity. So we helped Berney Associés to analyse its brand image, in order to identify the key components of its corporate personality. Our aim was to go beyond questions of taste and propose an identity that would be a perfect fit with the company’s values.

How would you describe the new brand identity of Berney Associés?

Hervé Rigal: Berney Associés is now presenting the various facets of its brand identity coherently, through design, colour, style, tone and attitude. It’s an inclusive universe that speaks to every generation but doesn’t ignore the company’s history. Its identity is elegant and modern, conscientious and streamlined. It reflects a contemporary, energetic approach to accounting and tax advisory services as practised by Berney Associés. It sparks curiosity and invites us to find out more about the business.

And how is it being implemented?

Laurent Berney: Our new identity is being rolled out across a broad spectrum that includes digital and print. We plan to develop a stronger digital presence than before, but without forgoing paper altogether.
Our website is the main gateway to this new universe. We wanted it to be surprising, open and inspirational, with more intuitive access to information. On the website, we explain more about who we are and the services we offer, in more accessible language. We also provide concrete examples of our work, to give our clients a clearer understanding of our added value.

What key factors are involved in ensuring that a brand identity hits the mark?

Hervé Rigal: For an identity to be rolled out successfully, the company has to live it and fully take it on board. It’s also important for the company to ensure the viability of the tools established and to develop new ones. It’s a long-term job. It always has to keep abreast of the latest developments and adapt, because new technologies evolve very fast, and so do the needs and habits of clients. 2019 has just begun.

Looking ahead, what challenges does Berney Associés face, now that the business has a new brand image?

Laurent Berney: 2019 had a very positive start, with the launch of our new identity and the rolling out of a stronger communication approach. Meanwhile, we’ve been working on other exciting projects. Our objectives for the coming months include seeking out innovative solutions in our various businesses, making new connections with schools, promoting the wellbeing of our employees at work and increasing the proportion of women within the company.