Dorman

Brand Strategy

Branding & Strategy

The Challenge

Dorman Products is the nation’s leading supplier and developer of aftermarket auto parts. The parts developed by Dorman are meant to replace those built by OEMs – Original Equipment Manufacturers – that make up consumers’ cars off the line.

 

As an innovations company, Dorman actually goes beyond building parts that are straight replacements for their OEM counterparts; rather, they aim to design and produce equipment that improves on the original. Whether it’s fixing an OEM part’s flaws, consolidating four parts into one, changing a part’s core material to increase its lifespan, or adding a design feature that reduces installation time for technicians, Dorman always operates with a customer- and technician-first mentality.

 

Dorman Technician

 

Following significant investments in people and technology, along with a handful of acquisitions, Dorman was ready to reposition its brand within the market to accurately convey its core competencies, namely its devotion to innovation. This campaign would be the first brand-first effort in Dorman’s 101-year (!) history, and [ 2 one 5 ] Creative was more than happy to assist.

The Approach

[ 2 one 5 ] began this project by developing a brand strategy that assessed Dorman’s brand, internal and external brand perceptions, USPs, competition, market segments, and more. From the myriad data collected during the assessment, including dozens of one-on-one interviews with Dorman team members, our team developed a comprehensive report, including recommendations on everything from brand pillars, keywords, and messaging to personas (current and aspirant), tone, and segment-specific channels/messaging.

 

 

Following the completion of the strategic element, we began developing a creative campaign that would embody – and showcase – the unique elements that make Dorman, Dorman.

 

Specifically, we wanted to shine a light on Dorman’s no-nonsense process. The brand is eager to source new product ideas from every source, and turning those ideas into actual parts involves zero red tape. If a product has the potential to improve the lives of customers and/or technicians, it’s a go.

 

This open-door approach to innovation drives another Dorman USP: breadth and diversity of SKUs. Dorman brings literally thousands of products to market per year. When it comes to scale, they are peerless.

 

 

Initially, we developed two creative directions for Dorman’s consideration. The selected direction was built around “Solutions First”, a tagline we developed from an internal moniker popular with technicians (“Check Dorman First”) to highlight the brand’s true positioning as an innovations company vs. a manufacturer.

 

Dorman Solutions First

 

The creative integrated the personal touches that make Dorman unique in the form of fingerprints and handwritten details, including technician signatures and initials. Dorman’s incredible product catalogue was incorporated in the form of part silhouettes and volume-focused copy.

 

 

Our selection of bold, powerful type connoted the brand’s industry standing, and straightforward approach to developing solutions.

 

 

The campaign was ultimately applied to a host of deliverables, including signage, digital ads, a host of marketing and sales materials

 

 

Also included: a virtual facility tour.

 

Dorman’s in-person facility tour is a critical component of its sales funnel, so we came up with a way to showcase its many nuances to individuals around the globe who might not find themselves in the vicinity of Colmar, PA, any time soon. In collaboration with Dorman, we brainstormed and vetted a variety of user experiences for the virtual tour, ultimately recommending a tour outline, production method, and landing page design that would engage the highest percentage of visitors, compelling them to purchase from – or partner with – Dorman.

 

Takeaways

The campaign materials, led by the virtual tour, marked a new chapter for Dorman. Now, the brand’s visuals and creative speak directly to its solutions-based, boots-on-the-ground ethos, and are laying the groundwork for additional strategic growth.

 

Ready to evolve your brand? Reach out – our team at [ 2 one 5 ] Creative is up to the challenge.