Redefining the Tulip brand - Introducing the new standard in high-quality spectacles to generation Y.

How Tulip Dutch Eyewear became The Verhoeven Group's new flagship brand within a year.

Background

The Verhoeven Group is the driving force behind a high-quality optical retail chain. When Tijn and Wouter Verhoeven reached out to us to help them redefine their own brand: Tulip Dutch Eyewear, we knew we were in for a ride. Tulip is a Dutch design brand with an emphasis on expert quality for a fair price, from a fashion perspective. Tulip was to become the new flagship brand within the Verhoeven retail chain and gain national demand from other stores.

Competing with the most prominent international brands is ambitious enough on its own, but we didn’t stop there. Verhoeven also wanted to attract a new audience with the Tulip brand. Millennials, a generation of consumers they had not been able to reach since the uprising of fashion-driven stores like Ace & Tate.

Story

Minds set and focussed on the goal, our team set out to discover what drives this new audience of millennials. To step into their world and truly understand the values that drive their buying decisions. We realized that we weren’t going to figure this out from behind our desks. We needed to head out and explore. By hanging out with our audience, visiting the places they shop at, places they go out, and by simply asking questions, we gathered more valuable insights than we ever imagined.

This audience of young professionals, although unique individually, do share some essential values that drive their decision making. They value authenticity and experiences. The millennial wants quality stuff at a fair price and doesn’t have time for bullshit. We realized we could align the brand’s expression and language system to these shared values, to develop a strong connection between the millennial and the Tulip Dutch Eyewear brand.

Approach

We knew that the idea for the Tulip brand originated from the desire to bring expert-quality spectacles, Dutch design, and the high service standards of Verhoeven’s traditional approach to a market that thrives on fashionable authenticity and self-expression.

In a market that is overrun by big international brands, we wanted Tulip to light a spark of pride for its Dutch heritage. Honoring the old masters who inspired the craftmanship for Tulip’s spectacles, while encouraging a multicultural generation of individuals to create their own history together. Inspiring them to be part of a new Dutch design movement influencing artists and designers all over the world.

Having decided on our approach, we sat together with Tijn, Wouter, and their core-team to engage them in this new way forward.

We needed to make sure they were fully committed because we were planning on completely separating the visual language system and communication strategy for the Tulip brand from that of the Verhoeven optical stores.

Brand identity

In its core, the brand identity had been clear as day from the get-go. The challenge was in translating the brand’s most essential values into easy to understand communication that would resonate with the new millennial audience.

Visual identity & language

In its core, the brand identity had been clear as day from the get-go. The challenge was in translating the brand’s most essential values into easy to understand communication that would resonate with the new millennial audience

Tulip’s visual identity and language needed to honor the craftsmanship and excellence of the Dutch masters, while also expressing its unique individual fashionable style that resonates with the brand’s most important values.

Content direction & creation

We believe that strong brands capture the consumers’ attention by expressing their story and values through engaging content.

We sent our team of photographers and models on a mission to capture the essence of the brand through powerful imaging, combining the authentic urban style of our audience, with the elegance and recognizability of the Dutch landscape.

Webdesign & User experience

To deliver on the millennials’ high expectations for experiencing a brand, we designed the UX to seamlessly integrate the authentic offline experience and brand values into an e-commerce environment.

Interior concept & visual communication

Acknowledging the millennials’ need for experiences and the smooth transition from click to brick, we designed a store-in-store system that would separate Tulip from the other brands within Verhoeven’s retail chain.

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