Founded out of Startup Weekend Space: Bremen in 2015, co-organised by Design & Data, Valispace has continued to develop its business idea towards a latest seed round of €1 million from High-Tech Gründerfonds. As it looks to position itself more clearly in the market, it asked Design & Data where it could improve on its branding to be sure to communicate their message clearly and effectively.
The original idea for Valispace formed out of experiencing the same problems we all faced in our jobs – the daily pain of having to work with data spread across different e-mails and Excel files. The founders all had the feeling that something was possible to simplify this and felt that somehow they could find a solution.
Valispace aims to radically streamline the engineering process of hardware projects. It initially described its solution as “data-driven engineering” as the company is about handling data and knowledge in a good way and seeks to be “the best place for your engineering data”. It described its core product as “a browser-based software that enables engineers to collaboratively design better satellites, rockets and other complex hardware products.” Some of these messages however became a bit mixed, technical and blurred when it came to communicating their brand.
Over the course of 3 weeks, we worked with Valispace to simplify and improve their core message on how to communicate to the outside world, keeping complexity under control. In order to do this Design & Data devised some core exercises across 2 workshops to understand Valispace’s main customer pain points and work through its unique selling points.
We first developed a ‘golden circle’ of why, how and what is Valispace.
This led us to analyse its strengths, weaknesses, opportunity and threats (SWOT). From this we could develop a brand personality. Valispace wants to be recognised by its customers as cooperative, efficient, optimistic, smart and trustworthy. Each of these keywords has their own representative colours in a colour chart, allowing us to consider changing the colour of the company logo.
From this we could also work through a brand-positioning proposal and settle on five core company values, which should be consistent for all their communication.
We worked through a brand storyboard, getting Valispace to think of their customers’ current state (without product) vs future state (with product). Combining the key aspects of the golden circle, SWOT, the brand personality and storyboard allowed us to develop the brand essence into just a few key words.
“Valispace is the smart collaboration platform for engineers.”
Finally this enabled us to build a brand storyline with an action, target audience and value:
“Empowering engineers to build great products”
Marco Witzmann, Co-Founder and CEO of Valispace fed back their experiences of the exercises and workshops:
“The Design & Data team has great insight into the space industry, so we did not have to start explaining from zero, but could directly dive into the core exercises: Thanks to the process led by Sebastian in the workshops, we arrived at our core mission of ’empowering engineers’, which has been a great condensation of all the loose thoughts we had within our team. We are very happy to now be able to express and communicate what we stand for and use the results of the process to drive our team into a common direction as well as in our external communication and to attract new talent.”
We are happy to have followed Valispace from the beginning since Startup Weekend Space: Bremen and its successes. As the company looks to the future, we are sure that having worked through the pillars in which they sustain their values and ambitions, they will be in a much stronger position to clearly communicate their message to their customers.