Bringing Clarity to One Social Justice Organization’s Critical Mission



Wouldn’t you feel unsettled if your favorite brand had a different look, feel, and even focus depending on where it was accessed? That’s the problem YWCA faced as the association’s 200+ local outposts headed in different directions both in terms of brand elements and organizational objectives.


  • Branding
  • Integrated Marketing
  • Strategic Planning


YWCA has been at the forefront of critical social movements for 150+ years. However, shifting landscapes and a lack of defined organizational structures led to an erosion of brand awareness. Local organizations nationwide were using varying versions of logos and typeface. Some were leaning hard into programs like women’s mentorship, while others were primarily focused on fighting for fair hiring practices. Without a unified brand identity, audiences were left unsure of what YWCA stood for and why they should care about its critical mission.


User research revealed that while there was brand confusion, the general perception of YWCA was overwhelmingly positive. Using this affinity as a springboard, U.Group created a reinvigorated brand platform that included a bold new typeface, amplified color and usage consistency, as well as active-voice messaging. We brought the brand to life with print collateral, a brand style guide, and communications training toolkits that YWCA USA could use to assist local associations in adopting the brand. We developed and launched the #OnAMission national campaign, which included a mix of ROI- focused digital ad buys, targeted print and out-of-home placements, as well as a digital strategy to collect stories and fuel social conversations around #OnAMission.


The brand strategy, implementation, and #OnAMission campaign led to a 60% increase in traffic to YWCA’s website and earned the organization media coverage in, Pix 11 New York, Sirius XM’s “Stand Up with Pete Dominick”, The NonProfit Times, Chronicles of Philanthropy, and many others, all within the first few weeks of the campaign launch