The Evolution of the MetaCX Brand
MetaCX is pioneering a new outcomes-based approach for managing the entire customer lifecycle, and that is no simple feat. Configuring a brand that levels up with that kind of mission isn’t a simple endeavor either, but I am here to lift the proverbial curtain and show you what happened behind the scenes to create our go-to-market identity.
From the beginning, the biggest challenge was wrapping up the vastness of what MetaCX does into one, well-designed package. We were eager to show the world how we’re changing the B2B landscape, but the question was: How do we explain our revolutionary approach without intimidating our target audience with overly complex visualizations?
Anyone in marketing knows that storytelling is more effective than simply feeding information to an audience. A story gives people something to latch onto, to remember, and to relate to.
In 2019, the MetaCX story was told through hilly landscapes, simple city scenes and bitmoji characters depicting the MetaCX team and the solution we provide. Most importantly, these visuals had little ‘easter eggs’ – as our CEO Scott likes to call them – hidden meanings that the average person may not pick up on. Whether it was the climate changing or the calculated movement of a paint can, everything had significance in our story.
While these cities and landscapes housed our narrative for a time, we were aware that many other companies had ‘been there, done that.’ We were still in stealth mode, therefore had the opportunity to hunker down and rethink how we were going to go to market with the MetaCX brand.
We grappled with how abstract to take our visual identity. Do we dare go full on three-dimensional and outlandish? Are we the reserved cityscape and hillside type of brand? Or are we somewhere in between? Below are a few routes we explored, but ultimately, didn’t make the cut.
The Three Dimensional Stage: Spring 2019
The Space Stage: Spring 2019
The Map Stage: Summer 2019
We spent many hours and countless meetings discussing an identity that felt right to us. The various outputs of our exploration were vastly different, and we may have gone in a different direction, but all of the visuals outlined above contributed to the creation of our current world. The ‘Three Dimensional’ stage provided a visionary approach, the ‘Space Stage’ gave way to pushing boundaries, and the ‘Map Stage’ lent well to a clearly defined story – all of which we wanted to continue to make apparent.
The Metaboom Metamorphosis
When exploring our brand, it was only a matter of time until we turned our focus to the symbol that represents MetaCX most simply. Our current logo was not happenstance, but a calculated evolution of a few key elements (it took just *a few* iterations of course).
The Metaboom, as we call it, started back in 2018 with our pals at DesignMap. Sarah Gardziel, who is now our product designer, was tasked with quickly defining an identity. Many iterations, and three finalized directions later, Scott was intrigued by a ‘network’ approach. The idea of collaboration, coming together, and connectedness were all focal points behind the making of our Metaboom.
The four dots and four parts that stretch out signify a snapshot of a spinning motion – the momentum of MetaCX. And if you are familiar with our product, you’ll know that dots and the dot grid also play a major role in our UI aesthetic (a designers dream).
Refinements from this point on were purely visual to develop a more friendly and approachable feel. From 2018 to 2020 – the Metaboom evolved into a delightfully smooth and organic symbol that identifies our ground-breaking presence on every one pager, email, landing page, video, and t-shirt.
The Weebles, Blobs, and Meebos
Let me tell you, the funny blob characters (we’ll get to the name soon) that have caused a stir since our launch did not start out as the prettiest crayons in the box. In the midst of configuring a brand identity, they were initially introduced as stick figures crawling onto a three-dimensional plane.
But, before we knew it, these figures were brought to life and hundreds of them were floating around our self-proclaimed world, the Metaverse.
“I like the…weebles?” Scott said.
“Can we put the blob people on this slide?” said someone in sales.
Being the forward thinking company we are, we knew a better name was out there.
We landed on Meebos, partially because it ties in MetaCX’s namesake and partially because it’s fun to say.
With a name we all felt confident in, I turned my attention to the refinement of the designs. The stick figures turned into blobs, the blobs morphed into the more dignified Meebos, and their personalities began to take shape. MetaCX’s vision to transform how suppliers and buyers collaborate together was soon brought to life by these simple personas.
With a new, slightly mystifying brand identity formed, I made the formal introduction to MetaCX employees. One custom Meebo slack emoji later, they were adopted by all to love and adore.
Then came the real test. We released the Meebos for the world to see.
Some eyebrows raised, “Why the faceless blobs?”
Let me explain.
Meebos are friendly, creative and inclusive characters that represent a buyer, supplier, employee, you or me. They focus on the core value of working together – communication. Hence, the delightfully ambiguous faces with only mouths to see.
Not only did we want to focus on communication, but the relationships between people and businesses throughout their success journeys. The Meebos’ soft edges, inspired by our metaboom, lend to a trustworthy, kind, and relatable individual. Their movements and body language depict successes, struggles, and teamwork.
You may now be asking, “Okay, but why the floating planes?” The planes are representative of our crowning feature, MetaCX bridges. Bridges are a shared space where suppliers and buyers can collaborate around success plans–defining and tracking the progression of outcomes together.
The MetaCX Meebos and the planes they occupy simply visualize the essence of our story, while offering a gregarious aura that sets our identity apart from others. In a world filled with duplicate designs and typical routes, why not strive to be different?
Although this deeper look into our brand only scratches the surface of the number of hours exploring our brand and visual identity, there are many more hours to come. Our visual story doesn’t stop here, but as we refine and develop it in the future, we hope you keep reading and follow along.