Brand Union

News New York

Brand Union develops Laurel Road, a new brand for DRB’s online lending

July 11 2017

WPP global brand agency Brand Union has completed an ambitious strategic execution and visual identity creation for Laurel Road, the newly rebranded fast-growing online lending division of Connecticut-based financial institution, Darien Rowayton Bank (DRB).

To bring the Laurel Road brand to life, Brand Union initiated a full-scale brand building exercise for DRB’s online division, which offers loans and refinancing services to students and young professionals. Beginning with a discovery phase that delved into its offering and competitors, Brand Union then developed a brand positioning and messaging that were realized as a comprehensive visual identity system and strategy to guide the company’s digital expression.

“The name itself – ‘Laurel Road’ – speaks to the path that people tread on their way to success, and was a real source of inspiration for how we brought the brand to life,” Brand Union Associate Director, Strategy Jessica Lehmann explains. “We built a rich story around that idea,  so it was important that the design emphasized the journey too, using imagery and visual cues to connote roads and paths, while incorporating the idea of freedom that one feels when financially unburdened. The brand we created places the consumer at the center and reflects the sense of optimism that the company’s target audience has for the future.”

With Laurel Road’s message of “Rewarding Determination,” Brand Union weaves a narrative that focuses on appealing to individuals who have proven themselves to be aspirational, accomplished and dedicated, and deserve recognition for that with financial products that will not only save them money but are also easy to use and integrate into their lives.

“It is a positive, future-facing story of how Laurel Road will reward its customers by helping them to leave their debt behind, making the difficult road to success just a bit easier,” adds Brand Union Senior Client Director, Sheila Sheedy. “It recognizes that Laurel Road’s customers are often short on time – they’re working hard on getting to where they want to go and don’t want to waste the precious free time they have trying to navigate financial products that don’t provide them with the experience they deserve. While the journey to success isn’t straightforward, Laurel Road is there to ease the pressure, and ensure customers don’t have to worry about their finances on top of everything else that they’re trying to do and achieve.”

The Laurel Road rebrand marks just the latest high-profile project from Brand Union, following the agency’s recent visual identity and brand repositioning efforts for health care giant Aetna and Tyson Foods.

About Brand Union

Brand Union is a leading WPP-owned global brand agency with deep expertise in brand strategy, design, interaction, brand management and employee engagement. Leveraging the talents of over 500 people in 25 offices, Brand Union serves every major market with a client roster that includes Bank of America, Jaguar Land Rover, Dell, Vodafone, Pernod Ricard and Aetna. From the most significant of launches to the smallest of online interactions, Brand Union defines, creates, and curates the total brand experience, ensuring it’s both brilliantly designed and beautifully connected.


About Laurel Road

Laurel Road is the national online lending division of Darien Rowayton Bank. FDIC-insured and established in 2006, Darien Rowayton Bank has helped thousands of professionals with graduate and undergraduate degrees across the country to refinance and consolidate over $2.5 billion in federal and private school loans, saving these borrowers thousands of dollars each. Darien Rowayton Bank is a Connecticut-chartered bank, Member FDIC, and an Equal Housing/Opportunity Lender.