First State Super

How do you move a big brand into the future?

Expertise Areas
  • Brand Research & Diagnostics
  • Corporate Purpose & Purpose Led Transformation
  • Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) Strategy & Advice
  • Culture Change & Employee Value Proposition (EVP)
  • Putting Purpose into Practice (PPiP)®
  • Brand Idea, Identity & Naming
  • Communications Strategy & Implementation
  • Brand Measurement & Purpose Tracking

When we met First State Super (FSS), now known as Aware Super, they were battling an overcrowded market, faced with forced consolidation. Super funds were facing intense pressure to future-proof their brands to attract and engage members and merger partners. For FSS, it was time to act.

Rethinking member engagement

A top 3 fund with over 780,000 members, FSS lacked differentiation in terms of brand, positioning, culture, and offering — they needed a strategy that would prepare them for the new highly competitive environment and ensure long term growth of the member base. It was also important to maximize the merger with Health Super and drive culture change, growth, and innovation across the united entity.

First State Super Case Study

Putting members first

Brand Council were engaged prior to the Health Super merger to provide board and executive level guidance on the transition to a national, consumer driven fund. This included brand architecture, brand strategy, culture transformation, and inculcation of the brand and culture throughout the organisation.

Building on internal and external research, we prepared a strategy to compete with industry and retail funds and developed a brand that helped FSS become a more appealing, nimble, and progressive organisation.

As part of this strategy, we managed the development and implementation of the new brand as well as the development of internal culture alignment, behaviour change program, and inculcation throughout the organisation, including reviews, R&R scheme, recruitment, and on-boarding.

“Putting members first in everything we do is a fundamental part of this culture and it firmly underpins our position as a leading provider of superannuation, retirement and financial advice services.”

Neil Cochrane | Chairman of First State Super

Setting a purpose for the future

During our 6-year assignment, FSS underwent a total transformation, putting the purpose into practice in every component of the business, and developing every part of the business to be truly member focused. They became a very strong brand within a highly competitive sector. The brand strength and foundation of purpose gave them the momentum to move into their next stage of growth and impact.

“Brand Council has been instrumental in developing the DuluxGroup core purpose. They methodically and strategically worked across all levels of the organisation to capture – who we are; what we stand for; and why we do what we do – into a unifying core purpose ‘Imagine a Better Place’. The true test of their work is that, almost a decade later, our Core Purpose has endured, strengthened and is ingrained into the psyche at all levels of the organisation.”

Pat Houlihan | CEO & Chairman DuluxGroup, Chairman MCRI

"Brand Council have helped us clarify our brand architecture, reinvent Hard Yakka and KingGee, and provided strategic guidance on two additional brands. This has resulted in significant tangible results for our business. We enjoy working with Trudi and Peta and value their opinion and expertise."

Doug Swan | Group General Manager Workwear Group

"The key to Brand Council’s success is their process. They took the time to understand the market in which we operate, where we wanted to position the fund, and what we needed to do to reach that position. In this way, Brand Council encouraged us to discover our brand by finding and telling our own story. The most important element in Brand Council’s process is proof. They have not made any recommendations without evidence. Brand Council are genuine partners on the ‘brand journey’."

Michael Dwyer AM | Former CEO First State Super, Chairman UNHCR, Board Director

"Together they are a great team who are hands on, taking full responsibility for the work – it is rare to find an agency as experienced and professional who will actually get in and do the work at grass roots level themselves."

Alison Brink | Goodman Group GM Marketing & Communications

"The work Brand Council have done to engage staff across the agency, distil and define a clear and motivating brand purpose, and then help to communicate and inculcate that purpose internally has been invaluable."

Commissioner Paul Baxter | Fire and Rescue NSW

"Over many years, Brand Council have led three brand strategy projects for Redkite. What has been consistent throughout is a highly effective approach to brand strategy and a level of care and passion that you don’t often see. Trudi has become part of the fabric of our organisation and a trusted adviser. She puts her heart into making the Redkite brand what it needs to be so that no family faces their child’s cancer alone."

Monique Keighery | Chief Executive Officer, Redkite

"Our staff’s enthusiasm, energy and ideas have been amazing. We have a single set of Beliefs, Values and one common Purpose – and it’s all come directly from our staff."

Andrew Richardson | Aruma CEO

"Brand Council has continued to work with us in an ongoing capacity to define the purpose strategy for our individual businesses, including Selleys, B&D, Lincoln Sentry and Yates. They are a trusted advisor and provide sound counsel."

Pat Houlihan | Chairman and CEO DuluxGroup, Chairman MCRI

"I have been the leading executive on a number of engagements with Brand Council including IAG, BOQ & AIM. I subscribe to Brand Council’s philosophy that alignment between the brand message and brand experience is essential for business success. It is through their refined process that I have seen the cultural and behavioural change required to not only ensure this alignment is possible, but more importantly that it is implemented. I am pleased to endorse the people and process at Brand Council and commend them to any business looking to re-engage staff and customers."

Daniel Musson | CEO and C-suite client at BOQ, IAG & AIM