Ramona Dumitru, Communication Director at Veolia Romania, tells Business Review about the process of repositioning the company and its new visual identity, and outlines the importance of this for its customers.
By Romanita Oprea
Why did Apa Nova decide that this was the right time for a repositioning and new visual identity?
For the last two years, the company has been going through a modernization process with visible results on the quality of Apa Nova services. The organizational culture has been refreshed with greater orientation towards the customer. The company is more and more perceived as modern and innovative, in line with the current pace of the economy. The decision came naturally. We took the opportunity to align the company’s image with the new trends, introducing a new visual identity. At the perception level, the aim is to give the company a more tangible feature, for a better understanding of the extremely complex process of water production and distribution.
Also, in order to underline Apa Nova’s connection to a solid multinational company, we were inspired by the Veolia logo (our mother company). The new Apa Nova logo is in line with our field of activity. The symbol represents a water drop through a section of pipe, while the font used is a modern one. The brand tagline “Your water, our responsibility”, talks about the responsibility, of both company and each and every employee, in delivering services.
What were the key elements you had in mind and kept a close eye on throughout the process and why?
At visual identity level, we followed the endorsement recommendations in Veolia’s visual identity brand book and we opted to connect the brands.
At image level, the new identity was the first step towards developing an image campaign. One of the key elements of the whole process was to develop a more personal relationship with the customers, by communicating the activities that our company undertakes when it comes to the treatment and distribution of water. Our intention is to explain the vital role that our company plays in the city’s daily life.
What were the main aspects in the brief you sent to agencies?
It all started with research and planning. The first step was evaluation, of course. A perception study was conducted and its results showed that the brand is very well known. However, consumers didn’t know exactly what Apa Nova does. Based on the study’s results, it was established that a facelift, rather than a complete rebranding, was more appropriate. This was the starting point for the agency. Then, the image campaign was developed in order to deliver targeted key messages meant to give simplicity and consistency to almost abstract concepts. Besides the TV spot that explains how the water gets from the river into our glasses, we also have KVs talking about: the length of the water network, total investments by Apa Nova, numerical water analysis conducted and figures on drinking water production.
What do you hope the rebranding will bring to your company over 2018-2019? What are its main objectives?
Through our image campaign, which includes a TV spot distributed also online, as well as creative executions for the digital environment, we want to communicate the responsibility that Apa Nova undertakes daily in Bucharest when providing services. The campaign’s main objective is to familiarize people with the services offered by the company, and to get across the daily responsibility that each employee carries out in his or her work.
How important is sustainability in your day-to-day activities and what do you do above what the eye sees?
Apa Nova supports sustainable development through investments in a more efficient water and sewage network, a continuous business reengineering process, the digitalization of the company’s internal operations, the sewage treatment at Glina, a continuous reduction of paper usage and a customer-oriented approach. At international level our group has put sustainable development issues at the forefront of its strategy (water service management and protection of water resources, promoting its treatment, recycling and recovery, optimization of energy consumption to conserve energy, reduce carbon and fight climate change). Based on digital technology, smart solutions are designed to improve the information and convenience for users and to optimize the environmental and economic performance of the services provided by the company. Consequently, Apa Nova has now positioned itself as a natural player in smart city solutions and the sustainable city of the future.
What were the main challenges of the whole process?
Apa Nova is a large company; hence the facelift implementation process will take until 2019 when the new logo is on all our touchpoints. It’s quite a challenge, but the rebranding is a natural step for Apa Nova and at the same time it is a statement for our customers and stakeholders: we are a modern, performance-oriented company. Also, Bucharest is Europe’s tenth largest city, so reaching out to over 2 million people and informing them about Apa Nova can be quite a challenge. At the end of the campaign we plan to conduct a new study, so we can assess our results.
What are the main elements of the communication campaign following the rebranding and how long will the campaign last?
We have already started the rebranding at building signage level, stationery, and commercial communications. The media campaign was launched immediately after the rebranding process was announced. Along the way, the new logo will be on the company’s vehicles, on the uniform of intervention crews. The whole process will cover all these elements by 2019.