Graphic Design Rochester, NY

Build a Brand You Can Be Proud Of
Client: Artizahn Dental Studio, Inc., New York

You paid your dues — studied hard, worked hard, and went as high in the company as you possibly could. But what then? Should you stay without much hope of further advancement? Or should you make the leap and start up your own company?

graphic design rochester nyErnie and Audrey Schmidt had certainly paid their dues. As Certified Dental Technicians with over 40 years of experience between them they had worked at some of the best dental laboratories in New York, and risen to the top of their field. They could have stayed on as long as they wanted, but felt that the time was right to make the leap into their own company.

They knew that they were risking everything, playing for the highest stakes. How could they maximize their brand power and get their new business off to a running start?

Choosing the right creative vendor

Ernie and Audrey researched Rochester brand identity firms and solicited competitive quotes. The top contender was IDU Creative Services, and they spoke on the phone several times with David Wright, president and founder. They liked David's phone presentation and the fact that his business was top-rated with the Better Business Bureau. After a face-to-face meeting, they accepted his bid and awarded him the business.

“Ernie and Audrey were clear right at the outset — they wanted their brand built solidly from the foundation up, and it was a top priority that the brand express their business philosophy,” said David. “Dental technology is both a science and an art; however, Ernie and Audrey approached it very much from the ‘art’ side of the spectrum. Making a crown or bridge that is aesthetically perfect and looks completely natural for each patient requires not only research and fine craftsmanship, but also artistry and intuition.”

Defining the brand

David proposed a three-tier brand development program for the Schmidts:

  • Establish their brand’s promise, benefits and personality
  • Create a brand name that accurately expresses the brand
  • Design the perfect visual identity to depict the brand

The first set of meetings centered on the value of a strong brand, what Ernie and Audrey considered the heart and soul of their brand, the unique benefits that only their brand could provide, and the brand personality that would create the right tone of voice for all of their corporate communications.

“The Schmidts were very involved in the process,” said Wright, “They wanted the brand statements to be deeply true, and I believe that after we finished the brand promise, brand essence and brand personality, they had them framed and hung on the wall at their laboratory.”

Creating the company name

The second set of meetings focused on creating the right name for the brand.

“Ernie and Audrey brainstormed a list of words and name ideas that had meaning to them,” said Wright, “One thing that came out in our meetings was that in addition to the natural pride in their professional ability, the Schmidts were proud of their German heritage, so in her lists of words Audrey included German words like artig (good) and Zahn (tooth). This was an inspired thought on her part and played a pivotal part in the final name selection. We discussed what type of name would be best (a coined name like Kodak, an associative descriptive name like Eveready, or a generic name like, and then we got to work.”

IDU researched the names of all dental labs within 100 miles, compiled lists of name ideas, created a list of best candidates, and made a preliminary investigation of trademark and URL availability. Then, for final selection, David set up the ten best names in his proprietary evaluation format, each with typographic treatment, concept justification, trademark and corporate search results, brand statements, and the name used in common business scenarios.

Ernie and Audrey fell in love with the name “Artizahn Dental Studio”. As David wrote in the concept justification:

  • “Artizahn” is based on the English word artisan and the German word Zahn (tooth). The Schmidts are of German heritage and this name plays off the German tradition of fine engineering and craftsmanship. “Artizahn” evokes the artistry, quality, old world craftsmanship and experience of the brand. “Dental Studio” clarifies the field and speaks to the consistency, leading edge technology, beauty and accessibility of the brand. The word Artizahn is unusual and eye-catching yet easy to pronounce. There are no local competitors with a name similar to Artizahn.

Designing the ideal logo

With the brand concepts and brand name established, David then created a wordmark and logo combination that expressed both the old world artistry and technical expertise Ernie and Audrey wanted. The logo, combined with their tagline “Artistry with Integrity”, extended the Artizahn brand promise, and locked together with the logo formed a seal of quality that dentists would come to recognize and appreciate.

Artizahn Dental Studio opened with a bang and fulfilled all of Ernie and Audrey’s growth forecasts. They hired more staff and soon began looking for bigger laboratory space. The credit is theirs, not only for having the skill and vision to create a successful dental lab, but also for having the foresight to hire the right creative professional to build the brand solidly from the foundation up.

Leveraging the brand design

As the business grew, Ernie and Audrey asked David to design and print a number of items, including letterhead, business cards, envelopes, snap-out multipart work order forms, labels and more.

But that’s another story …

Click here to see samples of the Artizahn brand identity.

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We provide graphic design, brand design, web design and printing services to corporate clients, focusing on business-to-business marketing & technical communications in the areas of technology, industry and medical devices.

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