Brand Development for Social Services Agency

Research-driven brand platform creates alignment and drives organizational change.


Kane gathered feedback from various audiences and stakeholders to determine what the current understanding and perception of the organization was and to assure a refined brand was designed with all audiences in mind. Questions were designed to gather an understanding of alignment on LSS’s mission and vision, and to set a Net Promoter Score benchmark. Activities included:

  • 1:1s with senior leaders
  • A survey of employees, leaders, operating board members, foundation board members, donors, partner organizations and clients
  • Focus groups with leaders and board members
  • Focus groups with employees
  • Video survey message testing with clients, partner organizations, donors and employees
  • In-person feedback sessions with board members
  • Employee and board member surveys on revised mission statement options
  • Current marketing material inventory analysis


Throughout the process, Kane solicited examples of REAL stories of the organization at its best to understand LSS’s common messages, value proposition and purpose. Kane’s brand strategists then distilled the information to create a new platform for all brand messaging.


In all, Kane solicited input, feedback and buy-in from nearly 500 different stakeholders for LSS throughout the process. The result was a complete brand standards guide including a more focused mission, achievable vision and accurate values providing direction for employees and a clear understanding of LSS for external audiences. When rolled out, feedback from board members included comments like the following:

  • “The words in that mission statement issue an identity and a call to discipleship that I think would please our Lord Jesus.  All I can say is, WOW.” – LSS Board Member
  • “I love the simplicity and the way the mission statement I selected truly embodies the life of my Savior Jesus. It enables me to follow him in three specific ways, and beautifully encapsulates the thrust of Lutheran Social Services. In addition, it creates agency with its words. Incredible! Nice work!” – LSS Board Member


Kane also provided direction on how graphics could be aligned for cohesion through a graphic standards portion of the guide as well. Today, marketing communications materials look like they are all coming from ONE organization.

Kane understands that all of this research and work would be meaningless if employees were not able to integrate the new brand language and look into the work they produced every day. Therefore, Kane provided LSS with a launch plan, with strategies to announce the refreshed brand to internal and external audiences. This plan included considerations for the initial launch, as well as ways to integrate language into day-to-day and ongoing communications. Leaders were provided with elevator speeches and key messages. Employees were provided with new templates. Human resources made updates to job postings.


Best of all, LSS’s new guiding principle of “servant leadership” was so embraced by the organization that the human capital team is developing training and onboarding programming to assure this principal is engrained in the culture of the organization from the ground up.