health justice recovery alliance
centering shared values in a coalition with diverse views
Partnering through Shared Core Values
Health Justice Recovery Network (HJRA) is an advocacy organization that supported the implementation of Measure 110, which decriminalized the use and possession of drugs in Oregon. Instead, Measure 110 funded accessible recovery services and community resources to help those most impacted by addiction.
Despite the sensible approach to community harm reduction, Measure 110 made national headlines and divided people from across the political spectrum. Our goal was to messaging and a narrative that could boil the controversy to a human level that everyone could connect with.
Taking a value-first approach to this project helped us create a brand framework that bridged the divide.
visual brand system
Target audience research
A Diverse Coalition with Shared Community Core Values
Strong brands start by understanding their target audience, but HJRA was in a unique position because their target audiences were very diverse at first glance. Their stakeholder groups were composed of a wide variety of medical professionals, policy makers from both political parties, law enforcement, grass-roots community groups, tribal groups and individuals impacted by addiction.
Across this wide array of stakeholders our research elevated shared core values that we could center the branding process around.
Stakeholder Testing a Brand Identity
Once target audiences were defined, rootid set out to rebuild the visual identity.
Through a research process, we found that many community members felt HJRA’s existing brand felt cold and political. It lacked empathy and a sense of hope and energy.
Rather than build off of the existing visual brand, rootid struck out in a number of directions to explore different visual languages using moodboards. This exercise allowed us to explore areas that were more reflective of the community and the work that HJRA did.
The moodboards created a visual foundation to start the logo design process. As our team created logo options, we sought community input to help refine the logo that is used today.
With our target audiences identified, rootid’s team started developing segmented key messaging for each group. The messaging was revised and finalized through a series of message testing sessions with representative stakeholders.
This messaging was later utilized in our content strategy process as we developed the website content.
Visual Storytelling with Infographics
The story of addiction and the harm that it has done to communities is a powerful one. But, in this day and age, nobody will sit down to read a 10 minute post about the challenges, causes and solutions.
Instead, rootid worked with HJRA to develop a series of infographics that would tell the story graphically. The series included 11 graphics that told a story that was supported with statistics and data.
In addition to including these on the HJRA website, our design team made them available as social graphics as well.
Website Visual Design Overhaul
Though HJRA’s website didn’t reflect the new visual brand, our development team assessed that the underlying website technology and code was well-built. There was no need to start from scratch.
rootid’s web design team utilized existing web components as wireframes and updated the visual design to match the new HJRA visual brand. Through a relatively low-touch process, our team was able to deliver a “new” website quickly without a huge investment.
brand style guide
Building a Brand System
One of the most challenging parts of building a new brand is ensuring that the organization is consistent with the application of the new brand and messaging. Furthermore, organizations have ambassadors that are important spokespeople for your work. How do you get everyone on the same page?
In this case, rootid developed a brand style guide that was easy to navigate and could provide a clear set of tools for individuals to stay on the same page.
We made the style guide an editable document so that overtime HJRA could continue to make adjustments as the brand evolved and they learned more from testing marketing materials.