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The evolution of Dokio

26 February 2019

Brand new

In many ways, a branding project never stops. There's no finish line to cross or summit to reach. It seems like a cliche at this point, but a brand is like a person. People grow and change throughout their entire lives, absorbing the world around them and evolving in response to it. That's how people—and brands— find their place in the world.

At Liquorice, we've embarked on branding projects for many excellent, established businesses, but Dokio was a different sort of challenge. This was an entirely new venture, for a product not even on the market. And we designed the product (more on that coming soon). That's what makes the journey of Dokio so unique.

Dokio: the backstory

Like the best innovations, Dokio was born out of necessity. Liquorice's managing director, Scott Bonanno, recognised a need for a product to help clients create, distribute and manage their branded communications, so he decided to build one himself. As Scott himself explains,

“Ten years ago, I started a branding and digital agency called Liquorice. We have always thrived at the intersection of brand design and technology, so it’s no surprise that Dokio grew out of that space. Dokio’s design automation software gives clients a safe and secure platform from which all their branded communications can be created, distributed and managed. Our aim is to retire the endless back-and-forth with agencies, briefs and approvals, and allow businesses to concentrate on their next big idea.

Fast forward a couple of years and Dokio was helping its foundation client, Bupa, to safely and securely manage its branded communications. But how did Dokio get from idea to fully-fledged brand?

An agile approach

A lot has been written about agile methodologies and the benefits of taking an iterative approach to design and development. The theory being that, the faster you test something, the faster you'll learn and improve. As a new brand built from the ground up, Dokio is exemplary of this kind of agile learning. Working in-house makes implementing agile methodologies easier and, as Dokio and Liquorice shared a studio space, the environment was ideal.

Research into audiences and competitors is a critical kick-off point in any branding project and, although competitors were initially difficult to identify, our Liquorice team had a good understanding of the potential audiences, many of whom were existing clients of Liquorice itself. Therefore, the look and feel of the brand was largely designed to speak to the people they already knew quite well. In true agile style, where concrete answers were lacking, calculated assumptions were made to keep the project moving.

Using what was learned from the initial research stages and largely influenced by the product UX, the first iteration of the Dokio brand and website included a logotype with the "Do" portion of the name underlined with a smile which emphasised the pro-active, get-it-done nature of the product as well as a dotted motif representing a movable artwork pinboard.

After this initial fast paced brand and digital sprint, the first Dokio brand was launched.

The next wave

Every iteration is an opportunity for improvement. Looking back to the first Dokio brand sprint, we were able to identify key learnings which became our springboard for the second. The research components were better informed, the audiences more well-defined, and, from that, a comprehensive brand, content and marketing strategy was developed.

Our digital team tested their growing UX knowledge with user testing sessions and, when feedback wasn't what they had hoped for, made changes and tested again and again until results showed that users understood the product and its benefits.

For example, one key lesson from the first iteration was that the product benefits and functionality were not clear to audiences without relevant examples. They simply couldn't picture it because they'd never seen it before. So, instead of relying on people's imagination, we decided to create some artwork mockups, using a fictional brand, and then tested it again.

What we learned this time around was that users became fixed on this one particular brand and had difficulty seeing beyond the examples. Again, it was all about context. When you've only got one point of reference, it's difficult to imagine alternatives even when you know that they exist. The next step was to expand on this fictional brand, turning one into three and strategically positioning them to cover the types of industries and businesses that we knew would strike the perfect balance between showing how broad the applications can be and how beneficial it can be to specific roles and industries.

In response to the updated audience profile, the brand itself also needed a refresh. We knew going forward that we wanted to speak to decision-makers and not just users. We knew that we needed Dokio to appeal to savvy marketers with a more sophisticated identity while retaining its characteristic ease and friendliness.

The updated website benefited from a more comprehensive content strategy which shifted the focus from features to broader benefits that would speak more powerfully to decision makers.

To infinity and beyond

Now with the brand and website in its third iteration, Dokio is going from strength to strength, securing many high-profile clients both locally and internationally and growing rapidly. And with three years of client interactions under our belt, we have never been in a better position to implement meaningful improvements to the Dokio brand.

One of the subtle but important changes is that the Dokio brandmark is now always smiling. The colour palette, typography, icons and illustrations have all evolved and a new website is now live. It's important that the site continues to grow as the needs of the client and the learnings of Dokio change. This latest iteration has largely been in response to the addition of a sales team to Dokio, who have their own unique needs as representatives of the Dokio brand.

The new site benefits from an updated content strategy, copywriting and information architecture as well as clearer package tiers, refined brand mockups, and a more comprehensive suite of illustrations and icons to help explain the product benefits to key decision makers. Through marketing strategy workshops, we were able to solidify the brand positioning and personality, create message architecture, content pillars and a plan for bringing the Dokio brand to life.

So, what's next? In addition to more user testing on the product itself, we'll be conducting interviews with clients and internal staff to test how effectively the new site is meeting their needs, developing new sales tools, and creating walk-through videos to help onboard new and potential clients.


Brand Strategy

Creative Direction



User Experience Design

User Interface Design




Brand Strategy and Creative Direction: Shane Loorham

Brand Design and Animation: Andrew Fiscalini

Copywriting: Madeleine Baud

Digital Strategy: Jim Yencken

UX & UI Design: Peter Binek, Angus Tait

Account Management: Tamera Crang, Stefanie Kindler

Development: Olivia Keegan and the amazing team at Dokio

We live and work on the lands of the Wurundjeri people.
We acknowledge their ownership of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.