March 03, 2015

AW Capabilities Month Case Study Wednesday: Darden Restaurants

Welcome to Addison Whitney Capabilities Month! Throughout the month of March, we will be designating one week where we will be highlighting one of Addison Whitney’s capabilities – visual branding, verbal branding, market research and brand strategy – via brand salsa and our social media channels.

This week, we are focusing on Visual Branding, which encompasses the visual aspects of your branding portfolio.

As one of the leading global branding firms, Addison Whitney is behind some of the world’s strongest and most iconic brands. We’re proud of the work we do for all of our clients and love sharing our stories, especially our visual branding experience. That’s why this week’s “Case Study Wednesday”, where we highlight one of our amazing clients and the work we have done with them, will focus on our visual branding work!

Our case study this week highlights Addison Whitney’s work with Darden Restaurants:Darden Logo

Addison Whitney has had the privilege of an ongoing relationship with Darden Restaurants, owner of the Olive Garden Italian Restaurant and Bahama Breeze chains.

Olive Garden

The Olive Garden project presented the challenge of updating its corporate image to be reflective of its new positioning as an authentic, rustic, family-oriented restaurant. Consumer research revealed that the current corporate identity projected an outdated feel. To overcome this challenge, we leveraged the Olive Garden name equity and created more sophisticated script lettering in a modern font.OG Exterior

Several icons to complement the new Olive Garden look were tested; however, the warm feel and vibrant colors of the grapes were a consistent favorite. The distinctive grape icon was implemented on signage, menus, place mats, take-out items and promotional materials, and it serves as a memorable, stand-alone symbol for the restaurant chain.

We also developed and implemented a corporate standards program for Olive Garden.

Bahama Breeze

Bahama Breeze MenuOur work with Bahama Breeze was a little different. Because the restaurant experienced extraordinary growth and success in such a short time, inconsistencies arose in its corporate identity.

We evaluated the corporate visual brand identity, including the logo, color, image, interior decor and collateral usage in order to appropriately recommend strategic options for a visual brand consolidation. We recommended a logo evolution to provide the opportunity to establish a stronger corporate identity portfolio while still maintaining the positive aspects of the logo. We also established the graphic standards content for the Bahama Breeze Brand Visualization Guide.

 Addison Whitney is a global branding firm with a passion for building strong brands. 

To learn more about Addison Whitney, visit our website at, or contact us here.

 Want to get exposed to real projects and attain real-life knowledge and skills vital for success in visual branding? Click here for information about interning with the Addison Whitney visual branding team!

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