Wilson

Refreshing a century-old brand for today’s world

Alongside DEPT®, Wilson repositioned themselves and authored a proactive, authentic mission for the brand and business: “empower every human to live life like an athlete.” 

On this foundation, we set out to refresh the brand identity and execute a digital launch strategy for Wilson Sportswear from concept through production.

The need to stand for something 

Wilson, the iconic American sporting goods brand, came to us at an inflection point.

The company had been at the centre of sport for over a century, making world-class hard goods like balls, bats, rackets, clubs, and gloves to give athletes an edge. While their products were well-known by athletes around the world, they were preparing to launch their first-ever apparel line and recognised that the brand needed to stand for something bigger.

We started by shaking down the brand through a visual audit and interviews with employees and athletes to understand brand perception and the role that sport plays in their lives. 

We learned unequivocally that sports matter. They add meaning to our lives. They teach us things. 

How to persist. How to work together. How to fail. And most importantly, that what lies within is bigger than anything that lies ahead.

You don’t reinvent a 100-year-old brand. You find its soul and give it room to grow.

No primetime athletes.

No cut-throat competition. No winning or losing.

Our creative showed only everyday athletes who play for the love of the sport.

Wilson Case Study Brand Carousel 01

Redefining athlete

“Athlete” is considered a title reserved for a chosen few. It conjures up ideas of physical ability and big-name fame. When people think “athlete,” they think of the ones they see on TV. Blood, sweat, and tears. Walking out of tunnels, arms raised in victory.

Our go-to-market strategy for the first year of Wilson Sportswear was to challenge these stereotypes by representing the athletic spirit that lives inside us all and plays on without expecting anything in return.

Wilson branding

Spirited collaboration despite the odds

Design and product development, in sync

The timing of our brand identity work allowed BASIC/DEPT® designers to explore and refine a new visual language for the Wilson brand at the same time their internal teams developed the inaugural Sportswear collection. As a result, we were able to influence everything from packaging to hang tags, even branding on the collection itself. 

Brand guidelines 

Empowering a global team to create with long-term consistency. We crafted an all-new brand book consisting of a design system, photography guidelines, and company culture material. 

Social launch 

A familiar format to carry on the conversation. For year one, we proposed orienting the brand around biweekly “drops.” This construct was proven in the category and gave Wilson a way to establish a heartbeat of product stories based on cultural moments, capsules, and collaborations.

Remote content production

The restraints of the pandemic didn’t hold us back. We were able to safely plan and produce multi-day shoots in LA to sustain the launch phase and months of drops to follow. 

Questions?

Producer, Brand & Advertising NL

Kirsten Keller

Stay in touch!

Personalize your experience

We use functional cookies to make the website work properly, analytical cookies to measure your behavior and marketing cookies for ads- and content personalization. We collect data on how you use our website to make our website easier to use, but also to tailor or personalize communication in advertisements, on our website or apps. Data collected through marketing cookies is also shared with third parties. By clicking accept you agree to this. More information? Read our cookie policy.