Reimagining Cybersecurity for Essendis

Founded in 2012, Essendis provides cloud engineering and cybersecurity compliance services for SaaS companies. Because they were experiencing rapid growth, they needed a website and brand identity that represented their culture and was on par with the customers they were engaging with. Our mission was to establish a visual language that would differentiate them in the marketplace and a website that would increase their sales.

Outcome

We designed Essendis' visual identity from the ground up, capturing the culture of its founders and the value they offer to their users through branding development. We then built a highly effective website that helps educate leads and convert them into users.

Services

Brand Identity
Illustration
Web design and development
Identity system design
Social media campaign
Marketing materials

Impact

Since launching the website, bounce rates have decreased, over 10,000 people visited the site in the first six months, conversion rates have increased and the quality of leads are now generally more educated, better qualified and ready to hire services.

The Mission

With a global market size of USD 122 billion in 2019 and projected growth to USD 281 billion by 2027, cybersecurity has become an emerging discipline and has brought to the forefront of many global organizations and governments to invest in advanced security solutions.

Essendis is a cybersecurity company that provides a unique combination of theoretical and engineering expertise to deliver state-of-the-art cybersecurity solutions. This means that the cybersecurity consulting team can help translate vague requirements into actionable tasks, and the cloud engineering team can help implement those solutions effectively and efficiently.

The Challenge

When the Essendis team approached Monttilva, they were in the middle of a rebranding process helped by the True Digital Communications team, now presenting themselves as a cloud cybersecurity company. To showcase their new identity to the world they were in the pre-production phase of a new marketing initiative whose central axis required a complete redo of their website and visual identity, only keeping the logo.

Essendis' request was unconventional. Instead of tasking us with developing all aspects of the product, they wanted us to work as an extension of the marketing team so that we could challenge their thinking and offer fresh perspectives.

Developing The Strategy

Monttilva's chief strategist sat down with Essendis co-founders and the True Digital Communications team to develop the brand strategy for the upcoming website. Over the course of a two-day facilitated session, Serggio brought to light the challenges facing the organization. In the process, they prioritized the needs and goals of the business and its users. This became the basis for the branding and marketing plans for the website launch.

Understanding The Users

Essendis users tend to be small SaaS companies that are growing and therefore are starting to become popular, but when trying to sell their product to larger companies, they start asking questions about security protocols that the users don't know how to answer. To understand the needs of these users, we created unique user profiles to represent the range of the audience. This painted a clear picture of their demographics, psychographics, needs and desires.

If we wanted to create conversions we had to showcase Essendis' expertise while also showcasing complex cybersecurity concepts in a simple way. This would require an evolution of the way cybersecurity concepts are represented while communicating the type of company it is: familiar in all the right ways and refreshingly different in ways that feel intuitive and relevant.

Defining The Brand

Through a series of exercises in the strategy workshop we were able to extract and refine the key pillars of the brand. This defined the personality of the brand, how it should look, sound and act.

Winning visual direction stylescape.

Positioning

Understanding the essendis brand and who their core user is, helped refine the positioning phrase for the organization. This set the tone for everything created for the website.

Essendis provides cybersecurity compliance services to software entrepreneurs in a fast-paced environment with an smart and approachable voice. Helping them feel relieved and excited.

Evolving the look & feel

We wanted to represent the modern and energetic potential of what a security company could become while honoring its practical and pragmatic legacy. In the end, we proposed a medium between the two, relying on a system of illustrations and typography to generate visual interest and personalization.

“Monttilva did such an incredible job translating really difficult technical concepts into a beautiful user experience.”
James Schraepfer
Cofounder, Essendis

Brand refresh

Essendis is a cybersecurity company that aims to help SaaS companies keep moving, growing and winning business. Without the stress of managing multiple vendors, its users can focus on innovating their products and selling to larger companies.

Illustrations for the win

To create an experience that would appeal to a diversity of users and prioritize ease of use, we created a series of illustrations. Essendis would use these illustrations to communicate the meaning of arcane cybersecurity concepts as quickly as possible without using stock photography or abstract illustrations. This helped build a bridge between content and design by relying more on the visuals themselves to generate flow and not interrupt or limit people's thought processes.

Website redesign

A smoother user experience. Monttilva redesigned the essendis website, the hub for all things marketing related. The goal was to make it easy for users to learn about the services while offering insights into how cybersecurity works along the way.

Early in the process the team developed competitive audits of sites in the same vertical, as well as in related markets. The insights gained from these influenced site structures and characteristics.

The Essendis sitemap: The team created a hierarchical overview of the site structure, to identify the flow of the user’s journey.

The experience begins on the landing pages. Users are provided with high-level information and videos introducing them to the services while the contact and link remain one click away.

Following the launch of the site in July 2019, there was an immediate improvement in metrics. In the first six months they measured a dramatic 10,000 new users of which 48% were organic, with an average session duration of 6:25.

Marketing Assets

We knew that using locks and hackers through the website was not going to work when it came to bringing users to the site. Without a clear explanation and a step-by-step process education and qualification was going to be nearly impossible. A defining marker of success for essendis would be their ability to educate and facilitate high value content to their potential customers.

Working closely with the marketing team and the production team, we did extensive prototyping to identify the structure that made the most sense and provided the right levels of specificity and simplicity. Videos, landing pages and educational centers were popular with the audience. As a result there was a dramatic increase in contact requests compared to previous years.

Redesigned to imagine what’s possible

When we started developing Essendis we asked the executives: "What would it be like if we made a homerun? What would it look like if the project was a success?". We are deeply inspired by the concepts we learned during this project and are honored to have been a part of helping Essendis imagine futures free of digital threats. Since its launch in mid-2019 Essendis has experienced remarkable growth and we are excited to watch its continued success.

“Their ability to take our feedback and make adjustments that got to the heart of what we were looking for was uncanny.”
Michael Schraepfer
Cofounder, Essendis

Results

Following the launch of the site in July 2019, there was an immediate improvement in metrics. In the first six months they measured:

10k

New Users

48%

Organic Traffic

6:25”

Average Session Lenght