England Athletics brand

Building a flagship running brand to help change lives for the better.

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Insight

England Athletics had an opportunity to take an existing running brand and transform it into something far more fun, engaging and accessible for anyone looking to take up recreational running on a local level throughout England. They needed a fresh new brand that would appeal to running enthusiasts looking to set up local running groups as well as encouraging people take up the sport regardless of ability. The brand architecture also needed to be able to support sub-brands and product brands, so that England Athletics could have the flexibility to grow RunTogether as the leading brand for recreational running.

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Design

Using audience insight from group leaders and group runners, we quickly established four core values to capture the true spirit of the brand: fun, friendly, inclusive and supportive. The name of the brand was treated as an evolution of the existing running brand ‘Run England’ which had already gained some momentum with running groups and run routes since it was created in 2011. Rather than ‘start again’, our approach was to evolve the brand towards something that felt more recreational and social as opposed to competitive and athletic. ‘RunTogether’ brings running and community together in one place and gives people the opportunity to be connected to running through groups, routes and schools on a local and national level. We kept the core red colour from the Run England brand, but added some vibrant secondary colours to help provide the diversity needed for the sub-brand treatments.

Photography was quickly identified as key to the brand’s success in attracting new run leaders and participants. We worked with a sports photographer to capture some real running groups in action. Real people of mixed ages and abilities running together in parks, towns and cities - nothing staged, just people having fun and feeling good about running. We also developed a bespoke typeface made from the handwriting of different people involved with RunTogether to help enhance the social aspect of the brand and provide more personality.

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Results

With the strategy, name and visual identity in place, we rolled out the brand across online and offline collateral to produce a range of promotional material including banners, posters, t-shirts, shoelaces, infographics, business stationery and digital document templates.

We worked closely with England Athletics to develop a brand adoption strategy placing existing Run Leaders centre stage. They were consulted throughout the branding process to ensure they would fully adopt and champion the new brand as the success of the initiative relies on their participation.

“First Roadshow this morning in Devon was brill, really well received by Leaders. It's so great seeing the reaction to the work we've all put so much into.”

Jenny O'Brien Marketing Manager, England Athletics