With roots dating back to 1854, Hilliard Lyons is one of the oldest investment firms in the United States. The firm has a longstanding reputation for exceptional service and steady investment practices—but there’s a difference between showcasing your history and showing your age. Hilliard Lyons was entering the latter territory, especially given how much the financial industry has changed in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.
It’s a different world—not only because of changing regulations and investor perspectives, but also changing technologies. With the emergence of robo-advisors, the firm isn’t just competing against new brands but new modes of investing. It was time for Hilliard Lyons to signal that it’s relevant, progressive, and connected to consumers’ needs.
To determine what consumers need, Monigle conducted qualitative and quantitative research; an analysis of Hilliard Lyons’ core strengths and investors’ emotional motivators uncovered that the idea of trust was an opportunity area to cultivate. Here’s the thing about trust, though: It can only be earned, not demonstrated. We needed to figure out a way to express ‘trust’ without explicitly saying it.
Hilliard Lyons takes a holistic approach to investing; the relationship between investor and advisor is critical to the way it does business. And while the advisor is at the front line, there’s a whole team of people behind the scenes that help to power that relationship. Hilliard Lyons’ new brand purpose—to be the family you choose—captures the underlying feeling of trust that accompanies the idea of family. At the same time, it recognizes the existence of other investment choices; the firm must provide enough value so that investors will not only select but stay with Hilliard Lyons over another option. The purpose also inspires how the firm connects with advisors themselves; many advisors are second- or third-generation, and among employees there’s a genuine sense of community and responsibility to one another.
With its individual blocks coming together to create a path, the new logo provides a more progressive interpretation of Wall Street, subtly suggesting cobblestones paving the journey to what’s next. The mark’s upward-right orientation signals a brand that’s resolutely future-focused, while the established date nods to the brand’s long history of helping clients realize their financial goals. The mark is supported by a design system featuring banner shapes that echo the symbol, and a thorough, knowledgeable and transparent voice that creates a personalized experience.
Hilliard Lyons’ identity unifies the entire portfolio—from private wealth to trust to business solutions—which helps build brand equity, simplify client communications, and provide flexibility as new offerings are identified or eliminated in the future.
Today, Hilliard Lyons has a brand that can set them on the path of its next 160-plus years in wealth management.
“For more than 160 years, our number-one priority has been clients’ success—and that is not changing. But our new branding reflects how our firm has evolved from a traditional brokerage firm to a comprehensive wealth management firm with deep roots in each community we serve.”Tom KessingerPresident, Hilliard Lyons
Founded in 1854, Hilliard Lyons’ investment philosophy is shaped from the wisdom that comes with having experienced the Industrial Revolution, two world wars, and numerous market booms and busts.
While headquartered in Kentucky, Hilliard Lyons has presence far beyond; the firm has offices in 12 states, from Mississippi to Michigan.
Hilliard Lyons’ collegial culture is one of the reasons it’s been named one of Kentucky’s Best Places to Work for more than a decade straight; during that time it’s received the same distinction in four other states.
Over a 15-year period, three-quarters of Hilliard Lyons’ team of research analysts were nationally recognized for their work, garnering awards from such outlets as the Wall Street Journal and Thomson Reuters.