Supporting the Organizations You Love Should Be as Easy as Banking Online
After a very successful and enjoyable web redesign experience, United Way Rhode Island (UWRI) came to Oomph with an idea — modernize and rebrand their philanthropic giving platform as a mobile-responsive web app. They already had the software team building back-office integrations, but what they didn’t have was the all-important name, URL and brand.
The name was going to set the tone for the software platform — it needed to be easily understood, distinct in the marketplace, and personal. After all, UWRI prides itself on being a personal organization, helping Rhode Islanders who need it most. And giving one’s time, one’s energy, and one’s assets is as personal as it gets.
We were very excited to be involved at the earliest stage possible — this might be the first time that we got to contribute to naming something, not just visually branding it. After some research into competitors, the banking space, logo and app naming trends, plus a whiteboard full of other ideas, a clear winner emerged — MyFund.
The logo needed to have a visual relationship with UWRI. There is great public trust in UWRI that we wanted to leverage. After a few visual explorations, we decided to make the connection in a subtle way. The main color scheme borrowed from the recent redesign of UWRI’s website, using a highlight color of light teal as its primary color. The main typeface was Meta, which is the secondary typeface for much of UWRI's print collateral. These subtle connections helped maintain a family resemblance, while allowing MyFund to stand on its own.
The simple circle with “M” mark abstractly suggests two bodies, side by side and with linked arms. The tagline, “Because Giving is Personal,” was the result of one of those serendipitous moments during an all-hands meeting. Someone floated it to the group and everyone just lit up and exclaimed, “That’s it!”
All along the way, the name, the logo, the colors, the typeface, and the tagline just felt right. We all felt it, and it was very exciting to be a part of it.
If UWRI was going to promote this web app as “easy to use,” then the interface we designed needed to be just that. While we followed many conventions of online banking in order to leverage users’ intuition and expectations, we needed to keep the look and feel removed from typical banking products. The result is softer and more modern.
All along the way, we verified our wireframes and designs with real people. At the early stages, we tested wireframes and workflows with Validately. Later, we passed around a link to an HTML prototype that came as close to the real, working site as we could get. This not only gave the development team a live example of the user's workflow, but it gave the entire team a clear picture of how the responsive site was going to work.
The concept of MyFund is similar to online banking in that the user can make a donation through an online portal from a predetermined balance. The differences lie in the workflow; MyFund transactions occur both on and offline. All transactions are guaranteed to go to registered 501c3 organizations in good standing with the IRS, therefore, when a request is made to send money to an organization, the final check is cut by a person in the back office. We needed to represent the state of a transaction in many forms — requested, verified, cancelled, and complete. A user may cancel a transaction before it has been fully processed and the back-office may cancel it if the organization is not compliant.
While the inner-workings of the application are complex, the interface strives to be transparent and as simple as possible. One of the great benefits of an app that is supported by human staff — and one of the benefits of being a MyFund user — is the concierge service one can get from UWRI. We made sure to highlight this right on the dashboard when a user first logs in.
The Marketing Site
While the software was nearing completion and a beta launch, Oomph began work on a marketing site to promote the new web app. We were involved in writing the copy and crafting the story that would help users decide whether or not the MyFund tool is best for their philanthropic needs. The major benefits were key, or course, but a lot of small details needed to be communicated as well.
We scripted a series of videos to help explain how individual features work, while one explainer video on the marketing site gave new users a broad overview of why this platform is such a great idea. A list of primary features as well as some social proof in the form of personal testimonials help frame the platform as more than just a convenience app. It can really help you make a difference in your community.
“Every challenge we toss at the Oomph team comes back with a unique and compelling solution. From initial process through project completion, the brand development work for MyFund was smart, smooth, fun and on-target.”
Executive Vice President, Director of Strategic Marketing & Communications, UWRI
Happy to Help Make Giving Easy
Oomph is very proud to have worked with UWRI on the MyFund project, and with its recent launch in Rhode Island, we hope to see a new group of locals helping their neighbors in need.