Transforming Russia's digital landscape

Transforming Russia's digital landscape

Transforming Russia’s digital landscape 

Rostelecom connects people across Russia through the largest telecoms infrastructure and services network in the country. With over 170,000 employees spread across the world’s largest country, they serve consumer households, business and government.

The technological landscape is constantly changing, with new agile competitors and fresh challenges and opportunities in the market. Rostelecom’s business strategy has been redefined, evolving to focus on building an ecosystem of digital services designed for mass market, B2B and B2G audiences.

Digital access to what you need

Rostelecom’s target audience expect simplicity and reliability from digital providers. With this and the newly developed service range in mind, Saffron and Bootleg BBDO defined a new brand idea for Rostelecom: ‘Digital access to what you need’.

For a consumer, this means more than access to hundreds of TV channels. It’s a cosy night in with the family watching a movie. For a business customer, it’s not just a cloud service, it’s the successful launch of a beta start-up. For the state, it’s offering healthcare and education services that reach people wherever they are.

Whether they live in Moscow or a village in Siberia, their choices and uniqueness are enabled through Rostelecom’s ecosystem, bringing them closer to new experiences and inspiration. 

A symbol of change

We developed a visual identity based on the brand idea of revealing the other side. On one side is you, and on the other side, the experiences or content you want to access. The people you want to catch up with. The information you need to be kept safe.

The typical approach of limiting colour usage to a restricted primary and secondary palette was not applied to Rostelecom's new visual identity. In fact, as many colour combinations as possible were identified to complement the logo's core purple and orange. This gave the brand expression a modern update, and an advantage in the market, marking it out as the colourful brand in a sea of mono-chromatic competitors. It also allows the expression to work in a wide array of contexts by creating conversations subtly categorised through colour selection.

Designed for delivery

The set of core behaviours we gave the design system ensures the flexibility to adapt and evolve for years to come. Centred around a handful of perfectly-honed elements that recognisably distinguish Rostelecom, it includes the logo and the folding device signifying access to the other side. This was an essential part of building an engaging expression that could be implemented cohesively across the brand’s various touchpoints, including communications.

The identity had to adapt to meet the marketing needs of a company transitioning from a telco to a digital services provider for an audience of 145 million people. We created a flexible “highlight and reveal” design tool that protects text and is recognisably Rostelecom's.

Bespoke elements

In collaboration with Colophon we created Rostelecom Basis, a typeface designed to optimise the way text looked within the “highlight and reveal” design tool. The Latin and Cyrillic characters were refined for legibility. We also created a font-based solution that, when typed, will draw the “highlight and reveal” design device. Bespoke icons that harmonised with the typeface were also designed.

As their product offering evolves and expands in line with the brand promise, Rostelecom needed a way to convey a lot of detailed information in their communications. We designed visual tools to create flexibility in the toolkit, from modular stacking assets to bespoke icons harmonised with the typeface.

It goes without saying that it was essential for Rostelecom’s new brand expression to perform digitally. By considering the motion mechanics and behaviour at every stage, we have ensured that the design works seamlessly across the customer journey.

From online streaming platforms to social media content, the new Rostelecom brand has the power to adapt and flex whenever needed.

The flexibility of the design system also works across out-of-home media. Whether it appears on a digital billboard in Sheremeteyvo Airport or a bus shelter in Krasnodar, the Rostelecom brand has the power to engage and inspire its customers.

A brand expression that delivers across Rostelecom's retail stores and physical product interactions were an important part of the design approach.

In order to ensure the longevity and strength of the new brand expression, we delivered a design management solution in the form of digital guidelines to help Rostelecom manage the brand across their regions of operation.

Through our work, we have given Rostelecom the tools the business needs to navigate the transformation to become the leading digital provider in Russia. The changes usher in a new era for the brand and signal its evolution to an ecosystem of products and services. Giving their audiences access to what they care about, for generations to come.