Mined, Made, Moved: a thought leadership campaign for Castrol global

deliverables:brand visualisation / print / digital / illustration / email campaign

Castrol lubricants are in everything that is ‘Mined, Made and Moved’. Their global reach in the automotive, marine, natural products, aerospace and industrial sectors affords them a unique view of world trade.

Working jointly with us and PR company Man Bites Dog, Castrol wished to deliver a new campaign brand, style and voice for a series of reports tracking the performance and outlook of global trade. The campaign needed to look and feel different from Castrol’s normal brand styling, whilst still being recognisable as the global brand. The campaign needed to:

  1. Raise awareness of the thought-leading and industry insight side of Castrol – which is often missed by current or potential clients.
  2. Build a brand that would allow Castrol to look and appear slightly different than the main established brand. The brand needed to be smart, intelligent and trustworthy but could be more soft than the main brand styling.
  3. Generate conversations with senior buyers and directors of global firms, infrastructure and policy creators, for governments and large-scale existing clients, to show the depth of Castrol thinking.

Castrol required us to deliver a brand style, message and theme that could run through a series of thought-leadership documentation and digital outcomes, and potentially grow into a well-established brand that enhances the overall Castrol offering.

Whitepaper graphic design, infographics and illustration for Castrol Mined Made Moved campaign. By brand agency Pixeldot, Brighton, London and NYC.

Working closely with MBD and Castrol we undertook a series of research discussions, carried out our unique branding process to fully understand the very complex and diverse offering of Castrol, and deliver a brand which would become synonymous with it. The project was untitled at the time of briefing, and whilst working with the team at MBD we were able to conclude that the name for the overarching project should be being Mined, Made, Moved – as each sector that Castrol has expertise in falls within these three overarching descriptors. For instance, ‘Marine’ – which focusses on the transport of goods and products through shipping, with the ships being able to travel because of the lubrication that Castrol provides. The name was a resounding success internally and was given the green light for development into a full concept.

Internal spread of whitepaper graphic design, infographics and illustration for Castrol Mined Made Moved campaign. By brand agency Pixeldot, Brighton, London and NYC.

The visualisation style needed to be fresh, modern and global engaging – which required us to design without considering nation-specific trends and focus more on the classic design which is engaging, clear and eye-catching. To do that we focussed on three main design elements:

  1. Brand style – we developed a softer and warmer brand which used the main Castrol brand colours but in a more muted and warmer tone. We then developed a sub-set of 12 additional brand colours which would form the basis of the colour co-ordination elements for the whitepapers.
  2. Illustration – originally Castrol asked us to deliver the campaign with imagery. From the outset, it was clear this would not be a viable option as the cost, time and limitations were too much for the budget. Therefore we reached out to an illustration partner of ours to implement a style we felt would be perfectly suited to the narrative of the Mined, Made and Moved project (see more in the Illustration section).
  3. Overall brand style change – the project was for the benefit of Castrol, but it needed to look and feel different. Castrol is a fantastic brand, but it is a very corporate brand with strict and rigid guidelines. This project needed to feel more personal, warm and conversational to the viewer and therefore it required a new approach. Therefore we delivered new fonts, colours, layouts and design quirks to create a stand-alone brand.

Imagery is a key element in any project, but in a thought-leading report project which is globally focussed and is across every major commerce sector, it can be very challenging. With this in mind, we developed a graphic style with illustrator Will Scobie, which we enhanced and evolved for the ever-changing needs of the project. The focus of the illustration for us was to deliver three things:

  1. A technical feel – Castrol were promoting their technical and knowledge insight to the reader, therefore we wanted the illustrations to match that style and enhance the written word.
  2. Castrol at its heart – the illustration allows us to show a cross section of the globe, sector or vehicle – by doing that we can show Castrol’s insight and knowledge at the heart of global trade.
  3. A style which is stand-out, modern and timeless. Illustrator Will’s style is as fresh the 100th time you look at it, as it is on the first glance. We have worked hard to deliver that style across every outcome.
Complex data graphic design for whitepaper graphic design, infographics and illustration for Castrol Mined Made Moved campaign. By brand agency Pixeldot, Brighton, London and NYC.

“This project has had a fantastic outcome. Castrol is one of the most famous brands in the world, so the brief of creating a thought leadership brand which needed to have the feel of Castrol without actually using the logo or brand typography was tricky. Working closely with Man Bites Dog we delivered a brand which communicates the core message of their thinking – Castrol’s inclusion in industry on every single level.

The brand and visualisations have been extremely well received, and the campaign has completed its third year. We look forward to continuing this brand project in the years to come. – Luke Taylor, Founder / Creative Director

“This was a really exciting project – anything we do with Man Bites Dog always has a great outcome. We’re really into collaboration and being able to work with one of our favourite illustrators, Will Scobie, brought the whole project to life. Castrol were brave and bold by allowing us to create something which really stood out in their sector.

The outcomes of this project not only work as a powerful tool for communication, but you also want to hang them on your wall.” – Jan Rust, Founder / Digital Director