A New Logo & Identity for Carlos, a High-end Retail Store in Zambia
“Carlos” was founded by Carlos Chapasuka mother. It was her first business venture that she started in 1998. She named the business after her only child.
Carlos is a high-end retail store in Zambia, and one of the leading retail stores for health and beauty care products in the Copperbelt region.
Since the first shop opened in 1998 the brand has built a strong reputation for quality and consistency with their clients; both in the products they sell and their customer service.
The brand sells health care and beauty products over the counter such as skin lightening and brightening lotion, face creams, soap, and serums. Carlos has skincare specialists that carefully advise and recommend the best-suited products for the clients. Both men and women are able to help clients.
Carlos brand also sells perfumes and deodorants, and they also recommend and help customers choose the best-suited scents for them – whether its something mild, strong and also within their budget.
Currently, Carlos has 8 employees in their store, that work on a part-time basis. Their ages range from 20 to 30. The younger group is hoping to go to university, whilst the oldest and more settled ones are aiming to do further education in skincare.
The Carlos brand has future plans for expanding its store and opening another store in Lusaka the capital of Zambia. Carlos hopes to open the store in a high end, high traffic shopping complex.
Their long term vision is to have various stores open across the country, with ambitions expand into neighboring countries such as Congo, Zimbabwe.
Carlos also has a clothing department for men’s clothing such as shirts, t-shirts, trousers, neckties, and underwear.
In the department of skincare
Skincare is poorly understood and appreciated in Zambia. Not many schools adequately teach students about how the skin works and the importance of taking care of the skin. Many people, as a result, try to brighten and improve their skin complexion but end up using harsh products as a result of a friend’s recommendation or something that they found off the internet for instance. This leads to severely bleached and damaged skin.
Carlos brand goal is to help people take care of their skin. As soon as a client walks into their store, Carlos wants to gain their trust, in order for them to begin to help them by walking them through the different types of products that they have. While at the same time, coming up with a skincare regime for them to use and follow.
To help Carlos achieve this, they have study material to constantly stay up to date with the latest products, ingredients, and ways in which they work. So that the staff members are fully aware and are able to help their customers.
Carlos has a wave of repeat clients that come and show them the results of the skincare products that they have recommended for them. Carlos aims to be involved with their customer’s skincare routine.
Carlos makes sure they import a wide range of high quality and affordable products from different regions around the world. Regions such as South Africa, Thailand, Hong Kong, South Korea, Dubai, United Kingdom.
In the department of clothes
Carlos currently has its own brand of trousers that are manufactured for them by a manufacturer with labels on them. They also have clothing tags for their clothes with barcode labels on them. Each individual piece of clothing wear has the store name tagged on it.
Carlos carefully recommends attires for their clients to wear. Whether it’s for a weekend, job interview, work attire or something to add to their wardrobe. Their customers really depend on their assistance as it all adds to the buying experience. Their clients are given a range of clothes to try on, different sizes and fits. We help them decide which one fits best and looks great.
Every time a client walks in the doors, The Carlos staff always express and reassure their clients that they will help them in every way they can. Whether it’s picking out clothes to wear, improving the condition of their own skin; or finding new and unique scents customer service is key for them.
Carlos as a brand always seeks to go an extra mile for all our clients. For example, they offer a chair for them to sit on, an extra bag for their belongings (even though they haven’t bought anything from the store).
The Carlos brand is about ensuring their customers, employees, and suppliers or anyone else that comes in contact with the brand are taken care of.
They strongly believe that it is their duty to make a positive difference in peoples lives
Create a new logo / visual identity for Carlos’s brand.
Important information points gathered from the Logo design meeting and brief
- Carlos is named after the founder’s son
- The company was founded in 1998, and based on the Copperbelt region of Zambia
- The business is expanding and currently has 8 employees in the age range of 20 to 30
- The majority of their clients are working professionals. Some of which include, bankers, doctors, nurses, lawyers, farmers, mechanics. They also have university students.
- Aiming to open another store in Lusaka the capital of Zambia with aims to have various stores open across the country to explore wider markets in neighboring cities.
- Some of these employees will be further their education in specializing in skincare as the brand has its own range of skincare products with specialist advice.
- It also sells perfumes and deodorants, skin lightening and brightening lotions, face creams, soap, and serums.
- Carlos has a clothing department with its own brand of clothing. They also sell big brand names such as Chanel, Dior, Burberry
- The type of music played in-store is jazz, swing, and country. Some artists include Michael Buble, Robbie Williams, Andrea Bocelli, Norah Jones, Melody Gadot, Frank Sinatra, Queen. They want to create something calming, classy, and relaxing. An environment that makes people feel comfortable and appreciated. But also an environment that allows Carlos to connect with its clients.
The main goal for this project was to create a logo and visual identity design that represent the brand visually moving forward as the brand expands.
The Company & Challenge
How I arrived at the concept from reading the initial brief I learned that the business was founded by Carlos’s mother in 1998 and named after her only son “Carlos”. The brand already had a good loyal customer base that was high end and of quality service and products.
I wanted to focus on the heritage aspect of the brand symbolising prestige but in a professional and friendly way.
The concept of a crown came to be as a symbol of what Carlos means to his mother a “king” “prince” everything wonderful in her life and the most important person to her. A crown is very valuable and prestigious just as a child is to their parents.
As Carlos is a high-end retail store and one of the leading retail stores for health and beauty care products as well as having its own high-end clothing range and also selling top brand names the symbol of a crown also represents a high end feel supporting the brand’s strong reputation of high quality and consistency it provides its clients not only with the products it provides but the service it gives to its clients, and Carlos is fit for a king.
Opportunity & Process
As Carlos was rebranding as they plan to open up more stores we had the opportunity to work with a growing brand in another country which is always exciting to learn about different cultures. It also makes a project more challenging and a challenge is always good as the end result is more rewarding.
Even though the client was in a different county and in a different time zone we made communication a priority as good communication is key to solving a problem and in this case, it was a design issue that needed solving.
Research & Concepts
Once we fully understood the client’s goals and the direction they were heading we needed to get a feel for the brand. We started with a keyword discovery session to put together a list of keywords and come up with a sentence to describe the brand.
We then needed to understand Carlos’s customers to make sure we designed for the correct audience. Creating a buyer persona allows us to prioritise the focus on creating a real-life person who influences the buying decisions for the brand we are designing for in a more effective strategic way. This process will also help when we are in the ideation stage helping to generate and develop concepts that will be visually appealing to the target audience.
We then moved on to the ideation stage to create concepts for the logo design. We did a tone of rough sketches narrowing it down to a few directions to take further for digital development. Below are the final sketches created for digital development.
What We Accomplished
I came to Andrew with nothing more than a description of the business. And I have to say, Andrew has produced something remarkable. Our new logo has added great value to our business and has surely made it stand out as something truly unique.
In the past we have worn t-shirt with the logo of Carlos printed on it, and it didn’t get much notice. But now our customers really appreciate our new logo and t shirts, many are demanding for a t shirt while others even go the extra mile to want to buy them. The chosen corporate colors fit into our business really well, giving it a great high-end feel.
I feel proud and honored to work for Carlos and stand behind a brand with an amazing face to it, and I aim to live up to the expectations of the crown. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Andrew and would certainly work with him again given the opportunity.
Thank you for bringing our vision to life.