The Assignment: Bring back a brand or product that has "died".
The Situation: Mood Rings were a cultural phenomenon in the 1970s. In its prime, the mood ring was a statement piece about confidence and style, but its lack of reliability took it from "hip" to "fad" virtually overnight. We sought to determine what the modern day mood ring might look like in terms of style, functionality, target audience and brand.
The Landscape: Wearable technology continues to grow in prominence, and tech as fashion (and obviously function) is becoming increasingly important to the cultural conversation. Additionally, hyper-connected culture has given rise to social media engagement as a form of currency (likes, follows, favorites, and retweets) to girls between the ages of 12 and 18. The pressure of fitting in is only compounded by nonstop digital interaction.
The Solution: We created Runa, a wearable tech ring that provides a platform for teenage girls to escape the pressures of social performance - a place they can be honest and vulnerable. The ring allows the user to spin an interlocking band to adjust their mood, which is then broadcast to a closed social network of their five closest friends. We developed the product as a functional fashion statement, with five different ring styles for girls to choose from. Additionally, we developed a communication strategy, visual brand and identity, packaging, as well as a physical prototype.
My Role: What does it mean to build not only a new product, but a new brand? I helped lead a focus group of 12-13 year old girls (!!!), as well as worked closely with the creative team in the creation of the individual personas of each ring design. The name "Runa" came from my love of languages - specifically of Nordic and Viking languages and symbols. Overall, I served as the communication "go to", making sure everything came together. And sometimes gave hugs and ordered pizza.