Creating a brand that stands for the pursuit of improvement

OPEX Western Sydney
We created

Brand Strategy          Branding & Identity design          Stationery          Clothing          Website Design & Development          Social Media Management

Progress branded

Introducing the future of fitness to Australia

It’s not often that a brand changes names right after launch, but this is the origin story of OPEX Western Sydney.

OPEX Western Sydney was born out of the perfect storm of evolution, timing and opportunity. After running group classes for close to 5 years, Trevor, owner and head coach of CrossFit EC, had a profound realisation:

Group fitness classes are not the best way for people to achieve their highly individual goals.

While CrossFit has changed many lives and is a valid, widely applicable training methodology, Trevor’s true passion was to transform lives in a more meaningful, personalised way. The decision was made that the gym would transition away from group training to individualised programming, and 10 current members were put on their own program, with attention paid to training, recovery, nutrition and lifestyle in the pursuit of their individual goals. The members were thrilled with the results and the message was clear: Individualised programming was the way to go.

Trevor and I sat down and began planning for the rebranding of CrossFit EC to become Fortitude Project, but little did we know that we would soon become part of one of the most esteemed fitness organisations in the world, OPEX Fitness, and come to be known as OPEX Western Sydney.

Taking opportunities

From Fortitude Project to International benchmark, OPEX

The move away from group training and towards individual programming called for a brand that stood for growth, evolution and the building of character. Inspiration was taken from Stoic philosophy and the mindset lessons taught by Navy Seals, placing the onus of responsibility on the daily habits of the individual.

The logo icon for Fortitude Project alludes to Spartan warrior helmets used in battle, while the font used in the logotype was utilitarian, clean and without excess, in line with the focused persona of the facility.

During this time Trevor and his team were using the world-class business consulting services of OPEX Fitness to deliver the most value to their clients while growing their business, and the opportunity arose to become Australia’s first OPEX gym. A select few gyms are deemed worthy to carry the OPEX name, which is synonymous with the highest quality coaching, programming and results based training available.

Having just launched Fortitude Project and now becoming OPEX presented an interesting branding challenge, one that had to be thought out with consideration and communicated transparently to the market to avoid confusion.

It was decided that the pillars of focus on mindset, habit forming and living with virtue that formed the Fortitude Project branding would still be applicable to OPEX Western Sydney.

While working within the OPEX branding guidelines we created a brand instantly recognisable as part of the global umbrella brand, but with its own personality designed to appeal to the local market.

Visual language

Creating a uniform brand that speaks to individuals

Now that CrossFit EC had successfully transitioned to OPEX Western Sydney with a stop at Fortitude Project along the way, it was time to create a brand experience which communicated the individual attention, life-improving habit building and professional service that OPEX Western Sydney delivers.

Every aspect of the branding and marketing required a purposeful look, no detail could be overlooked. Just as in fitness program design, the details brought everything together.

The stoic, utilitarian look to the brand commanded a largely black and white colour scheme, with a dramatic grayscale treatment created for the images. Colour images were also given an image treatment, and photoshoots were directed to focus largely on the individual and the one-on-one coaching attention that they will receive at the facility.


Every detail matters

Gyms often treat the design of stationery like waivers and contract forms as an afterthought, making do with forms created in Word without tying it to the visual language of the brand.

We decided that every single interaction that current and prospective members have with OPEX Western Sydney had to exude the brand’s personality and make them feel valued, informed and empowered. No detail was too small, and every form, every email and every message was a branding opportunity. In short, we wanted to create great looking forms and stationery that people would be delighted to fill out and receive.

Digital evolution

A consistent experience across all digital channels

An engaging look on digital and social media channels was given a lot of importance from the outset of the project. Brands and businesses, even those who are located in impressive warehouse gyms, live and interact with their audience online.

For the launch of OPEX Western Sydney we designed an Instagram feed that would communicate the brand’s ethos, services and offering in an engaging, visually compelling way.

The website and Instagram feed complement each other in look and feel, but each is designed with respect to its platform, both making it easy for potential members to get in touch, learn more about OPEX Western Sydney and step forward to join.

For the audience, result is a brand experience that is consistent from the first social media post they see to the waiver they sign when they join OPEX Western Sydney, and begin their journey to living a larger life.

Good work for good people

There isn’t a project where my ‘Why’ of doing good work for good people rings truer than with the team at OPEX Western Sydney. I’m lucky to call Trevor, and his wife Amanda not just clients but close friends.

I was one of the first members of CrossFit EC  and have watched the evolution from group fitness to OPEX Western Sydney firsthand. For as long as I’ve known them, they have wanted to bring the best training, most knowledgeable coaching and improved health to Western Sydney, so when the time came to rebrand and reinvent the facility to improve people’s lives in a way group training couldn’t, I was honored to answer the call, and I’m thrilled to be on this journey with them.

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