Why do you have a new brand identity?

Since we formed in 1932, the Association of Anaesthetists has existed without a formal brand or guidelines on colour, design, and tone of voice. There also hasn’t been a central message that sums up who we are, what we do and who we represent. 

When we began working on our new website and database projects, and with the publication of our Long-Term Strategy, it became clear we needed to develop a new brand to help us achieve our strategic aims.

Who was involved in the rebrand?

The rebrand involved both staff members and Board members (the ‘brand working party’). We also hired an award-winning brand design agency, Johnson Banks, who’ve created new brand identities for Virgin Atlantic, More Than and the Science Museum. They also have significant experience in the charity sector, developing brands for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Shelter, Unicef, and the Disasters Emergency Committee.

What did the rebrand involve?

Rebranding our long-established, respected organisation was a big undertaking. The brand working party and Johnson Banks held workshops and interviews to gather person insights from individuals, industry and associations connected with us. We debated what we stand for, who we represent, and how we talk about ourselves in all communications.

Johnson Banks also undertook a full brand audit, looking at all our communications as well as reviewing our competitors and comparators.

What does the new brand include?

Our new brand covers a new visual identity:

  • Logos for the core brand and sub brands
  • Colour palette
  • How we describe ourselves (messages and values)
  • Typeface
  • Imagery (including real-life photography taken by the Association)

To ensure consistency we’ve developed a set of brand guidelines.

How did you decide on your new brand design?

Johnson Banks provided the brand working party with 11 different design options. Each design concept considered how the brand would extend to all that we do (e.g. digital, journals, guidelines, events and membership). At a series of meetings at Johnson Banks’ design studio, the working party selected four design options for further development and chose two final options to take to Board for final selection.

When will other aspects of the Association be rebranded?

You’ll first notice the rebrand in your monthly publications Anaesthesia journal and Anaesthesia News. We're taking our new brand to Annual Congress 2018 in Dublin. Later this year we’ll be launching our new website, which will be designed using our exciting new brand colour palette.

You can keep abreast of the roll out of our new brand and website on our current website. You can also read all about the rebrand of the Association of Anaesthetists in the September issue of Anaesthesia News

Will the rebrand affect my membership?

The rebrand is one of many digital and communications developments happening at the Association of Anaesthetists.

While you’ll start to see the new look in all we do, it won’t affect the benefits and services you receive as a member of the Association.

Is the rebrand funded by membership subscription fees?

We are funding these infrastructure investments from the reserves set aside by the Board for development. As our accounts show, we have ~ £1M in a designated fund established for funding capital expense projects, including IT and property. Over the last four years we have been using that fund for IT improvements including the new website and database. The branding is a relatively small but important element within that expenditure, which is important to deliver improved digital services to our members.

Why have you changed your name?

As part of our rebrand we took the decision to use a shortened form of our name in our branded communications: Association of Anaesthetists.

Association of Anaesthetists is the brand name used to refer to both the Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain & Ireland and its related charity, AAGBI Foundation. Both entities work together to further patient safety, education and wellbeing in anaesthesia. The two entities are separate for legal and governance purposes; however, for practical day-to-day purposes there's no need to draw a distinction. It can also be confusing. Using our names in full is too cumbersome and 'AAGBI' hides who we are and what we do.

What about Ireland?

Ireland is a very important part of our remit and identity. We have proudly represented anaesthetists in 'Great Britain and Ireland' for many years. This has not changed, and our full legal names remain (as described above). Our commitment to 'Ireland' and to 'Great Britain' is unwavering; we have simply chosen to use the term 'Association of Anaesthetists' as the preferred short wording.