What Will Green Do for You?
The quest for a new identity began July 1999, when H&R Block decided to align its brand image with its business strategy and reposition the company for expansion. Known as a personal income tax preparer, H&R Block now wished to promote an array of financial services besides tax prep, including home mortgages, financial planning, and investing advice.
However, research showed that, while the H&R Block brand was strong, the company was known solely for its tax work in a market that included American Express Tax and Business Services, Intuit, and Jackson Hewitt. To compete against its new rivals in a financial advisory world populated by names like Dean Witter, Schwab, Morgan Stanley, and Merrill Lynch, the company needed to stand out.
The idea was to breathe new life into the H&R Block brand, to make the customer stop and say, "That's not the H&R Block I think I know."
The fresh, contemporary green (a contrast to the dark green of another American classic brand John Deere) is intended to communicate a progressive identity and
reposition H&R Block as a full-service financial provider. With a core market in the US and Canada, H&R Block also offers services in the UK, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, and the Philippines. The company's visual look needed to play well globally.
While the green is a nice switch, and the ID is more substantial, I still think most people regard H&R Block as the "McDonald's of the Financial World."
What are your thoughts? Does the new ID convey something to you?