What’s missing from many corporate identity projects, says
Rüdiger Goetz, principal with Matthias Simon of Simon & Goetz
(Frankfurt, Germany), is the truest benefit to the client’s brand—
that is, business success. Many designs produced today are
visually exciting and some even win industry awards, he acknowl-
edges, but what is the actual worth of those designs? Do they
really help the client for whom they were designed?
Simon & Goetz’s identity design for Rotwild, a brand new com-
pany making ultra-premium mountain bikes is a good example of
how an effective brand image is created from the ground up, and
how that identity is crucial for corporate efficiency.
Normally, Simon & Goetz works with relatively large corporations,
but the Rotwild project was different. Three engineering students,
almost done with their university studies, saw that there was room
in the mountain bike market for a new niche: a high-cost, high-
tech bike with the cachet of German engineering. They turned to
the design firm for help. Simon & Goetz jumped at the opportuni-
ty to create everything for the fledgling company, from Rotwild’s
name and logo to its bike and accessory designs.
“We put a strong focus on the actual product design—its graphic
language or style,” explains Goetz. His firm was an ideal choice
for a start-up client with little budget for market research: Simon
& Goetz already had experience in branding for the bicycle mar-
ket from having worked with a much larger client. Much of the
design firm’s work was based on previous studies, in addition to
information the new client had gathered and a detailed national
and international competitor comparison study.
“They could see the hype in the mountain bike market that was
mainly coming from the U.S., where the sport was rooted,” adds
Goetz. “Bikes became a fashion statement and very contemporary.
Simon & Goetz Design
Corporate Identity
Rotwild has a strong, mascu-
line, aggressive brand identity,
which was created by Simon
& Goetz Design of Frankfurt,
Germany, to appeal to the
person who wants much more
than just a biking experience.
Rotwild’s founders chose to
pursue a “preference strategy”
versus a “mass strategy.”
“We put a strong focus on the actual product design—its graphic language or style.”
Aluminum silver, red, and
black have become the
Rotwild brand’s signature
colors. In fact, the color
scheme and its consistent
use over the years have
become synonymous with
what the company prefers to
call a “cycling experience,”
not a mere bike ride. These
pages from the company’s
catalog illustrate what the
brand is all about: Both the
identity and the bikes have
an almost military look.

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