• Broadcasting
  • Branding and Digital Product Design

‘Beeb’ — a distinctive identity fit for a multi-modal product

As part of our ongoing creative partnership with the BBC, we worked with its Voice & UI team, Marketing & Audience and UX&D teams to design a brand identity for ‘Beeb’ — the world’s first ever public service AI assistant. Our task was to develop a visual and non-visual identity fit for a multi-modal product, which brings to life Beeb’s persona in ways that are distinctive, memorable and unmistakably BBC.

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‘An exchange beyond words’ 
With Beeb’s positioning — ‘An exchange beyond words’ — as a foundation, we set to work developing an identity that promotes it as a compelling destination for discovery and a source of support and information for a broad spectrum of audiences. Our initial deliverables were behavioural principles, as well as audio, static and motion assets, guidelines and examples that demonstrate the identity in use.

Collaborate to create
Working with the BBC involves engaging with many stakeholders from different teams across the Corporation. We created an environment where everyone was able to contribute — for instance, we welcomed a team of BBC designers to work with us in the Moving Brands studio during the initial creative phase, helping to shape the initial creative phase and provide real-time feedback.  

The teams’ collaboration began with wide-ranging sketches to generate and assess the maximum of ideas. These acted as reference points to help us define the space in which Beeb would live, as well as its relationship to the BBC masterbrand.

Empowering, energetic and confident
We defined Beeb’s values and personality as empowering, energetic and confident. Working together, these guided a product experience that offers explorations to surprising and expansive possibilities, as well as an effortless path directly to the things people want or need.

We took inspiration from the BBC blocks and expanded it out into a grid that was interactive and living. Through many small ‘minims’ we alluded to the expansive possibilities that Beeb offers, while developing a language that is functional yet highly expressive. To this we added an extensive, vibrant palette which gives clear differentiation from other voice assistants.

A proof of concept portal
One of many such collaborations with the BBC, this project delivered an online portal that bridged the gap between brand and engineering. It houses principles and guidelines for the brand, as well as a prototype that provided BBC engineers with a proof of concept to build upon and experiment with.

We’re delighted by the way the identity offers so much scope with a timeless feel.

Rob Farnell
Creative Director of BBC Voice + AI