We were commissioned to develop the latest CSR campaign for SGS, the world’s leading certification, verification, inspection, and testing company, with more than 94,000 employees and operating over 2,600 offices and laboratories worldwide.
“For me, the most important learning on this job was seeing how big corporations realise the importance of creativity nowadays for their business and how independent creative agencies all over the world are becoming the easiest and straight way to connect with audiences. Even so, some of the more stubborn ones are still wasting their money on ads, marketing and old methods.”
Rafa Martínez, Head of Brand Strategy & COO
While other testing and verification companies tended towards campaigns with images of people exercising and happy families, we felt that this route was a bland and almost false way to represent SGS’ services. Similar to the iconic Lucky Strike ‘It’s Toasted’ moment in the very first episode of Mad Men, we knew that instead of trying to represent these fake realities, there was an opportunity to make SGS shine in comparison to its competitors by highlighting something which was simple and obvious, but also deep to the core of the company’s services. It’s Tested. Makes no difference what it is, it’s tested.
Makes no difference if it’s true or false, digital or analogue, real or fake, you can be sure it’s been tested by SGS. Makes no difference if it’s a toy or a chair, a solar panel or WiFi, a face mask or a mattress, you can be sure it’s been tested by SGS. And if it’s been tested by SGS, that means it can be trusted. This became the basis from which we developed the campaign, using ‘Tested’ and the interchangeable ‘Tested Means Trusted’ as the main claim.
“In our modern liquid society, we need something solid to hold on to more than ever. It’s hard to have confidence in things these days. In this aspect, we saw SGS as a large stone in the sea, which through their testing, provide real evidence that the products we use and love everyday can be trusted.”
Nabill Parvizi, Narrative Team Designer
“Understanding the complexity of highlighting an invisible action, it was necessary to claim how fundamental SGS’s services are in relation to our everyday products.”
With such a strong concept at the core, we wanted to stay away from an overproduced campaign, selling smoke with fancy nothingness, or in other words, ‘advertising’. Using a clean, direct, elegant and easy to apply style for the campaign instead, putting as much emphasis on the claim as possible, a claim which could be understood and have impact worldwide. From there, we developed a narrative and storytelling style, writing unique copies for over 50 products. Finally, we as developed design guidelines for the entire campaign, introducing a new typeface unique to the campaign while maintaining their corporate orange colour. From online to offline media, merchandise, the guidelines allowed SGS to adapt the campaign to their needs, as well as the flexibility adapt assets to their local markets.