Wheaton Precious Metals is the world’s largest pure silver and gold streaming company, whose innovative ‘streaming’ model funds mining companies and unlocks value for their shareholders and mining partners. For the first twelve years of the company’s life, they were known as Silver Wheaton, a name that their business had outgrown.
In the company’s early years, most of their revenue came from silver streams, but over the years they began to derive more revenue from gold. By the time they approached Red Rocket Creative Strategies, gold streams represented about half their revenue. Their name hindered their ability to attract new investors who view gold as a more attractive investment. The time had come to update the name and rejuvenate the brand to reflect the value of their gold assets, without losing the value of their previous brand.
We applied our proven four-phase approach to brand analysis and development:
First, we performed a brand audit: we researched their existing brand identity, messaging and marketing collateral, and their relationships and touch points with internal and external audiences.
Second, we analyzed their competitors’ branding and target markets, their investors, industry stakeholders, partners and brokers. We held roundtable discussions to learn their corporate values and attributes, as well as their hopes and expectations for the new brand.
After brainstorming, refining and validating a series of potential new names, we presented a series of options. After reflection, they chose Wheaton Precious Metals, which retained the mining company’s brand equity of the Wheaton name while reflecting the company’s true markets.
We then developed a visual identity based on a new logo design and new corporate colors. New guidelines help them build and support the new identity in every form of communication.
- Brand audit
- Competitor analysis
- Name development
- Visual identity design
Brand name development is a mix of creativity, research, and strategy. In this case, we brainstormed dozens of options—always validating them for practicality and utility, as well as checking for pre-existing uses, competitive differentiation, URL availability and many other factors. We narrowed the choices to a short list, from which the client chose Wheaton Precious Metals. Once the new name had been decided, we followed with a tagline and supporting copy to establish and reinforce the new brand’s positioning and personality.
With a name and messaging in hand, we applied the “brand personality” factors uncovered in the research phases as guidance in developing a logo for the new brand. We worked closely with the client through several iterations to come up with a final logo that tells a multi-layered story about the Wheaton Precious Metals brand.
The shape of the W—a modified infinity symbol—hints at the power of the streaming model, in which value flows back and forth, to the benefit of mines and investors. The use of gold and silver speaks to the breadth of their portfolio.
The new brand was first introduced in a ‘soft launch’ for the board and key internal stakeholders. This verified the strength of the new name and visual identity and secured the buy-in of industry experts. A full launch followed, with new corporate stationery, office signage, trade show displays and collateral, a PowerPoint template, and a newly designed website. We also prepared a series of trade advertisements to announce the new identity to the industry, and provided a Graphic Standards Manual to guide staff, advertisers and suppliers in maintaining the mining company’s brand identity.
“[the] new identity … better reflects our unique business model and diversified asset portfolio”
I also wanted to highlight the growing excitement around the brand by the management team and the Company as a whole. Thank you for the excellent work you have done.
Senior Vice President, Investor Relations
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