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A tale of endless human possibilities

Pinsent Masons has a deserved reputation as one of the world’s most innovative law firms, and needed its flexible legal services platform, Vario, to reflect this. The challenge was to build a people-centric brand that connected emotionally with its audience — no mean feat when the audience is formed entirely of freelancers — whilst echoing the professional values of the firm AND standing out in a crowded market.

To build a people-centric brand, you have to start with people. Sounds simple, right? But people are complex individuals, each with their own unique dreams and fears. And to connect with them, you need to understand and respect this. By carrying out in-depth interviews with a cross-section of existing freelance lawyers, analysing the data to identify attributes and motivations, and then validating our findings amongst the larger Vario base, we developed an objective, human understanding of what the audience needed from the brand. Creating eight ‘Vario personas’ each with their own deeply personal story, provided the platform on which to build a deeply personal brand.

Utilising the everyday objects that make up a person’s life, we crafted a brand concept that reflected the world of work today: ‘Law. Endless Possibilities’. Our desire was to reflect the myriad of individual stories that emerged amongst the Varios, so that every person experiencing the Vario community felt a sense of belonging. Via a relaunched website, engaging animation and PR strategy, this brand was executed externally to attract the right legal talent.

However, in a freelance marketplace, it’s retention that’s the real challenge. We wanted to make every Vario feel valued and recognised, designing two specific initiatives to achieve this in direct response to feedback from the research stage of this project. Firstly, each new Vario now receives a beautifully designed and branded Welcome Pack, to support them during the period between on-boarding and starting an assignment. Secondly, we designed and manage a bi-monthly ‘Vario Life’ newsletter, to provide the sense of community that can be lacking in the professional life of a freelancer. This is now firmly established, engaging >300 Varios each time.


To hear more about Vario, watch Matthews’ video below, or visit their website.


‘Our intention was to develop a world-class employee engagement strategy, complicated by the fact that our ’employees’ are all freelancers. Following our brand relaunch and new engagement initiatives, we now receive regular feedback that our brand 
is the strongest in the market, leading directly to a 71% increase in the number of lawyers choosing us for their freelance career. We are delighted with the results Bretom has delivered.’

Matthew, Director of Vario, October 2017


‘We are delighted with the end results of this project. Our brand has been completely transformed into a vibrant, modern and professional, yet fun one; which perfectly matches up to the service we offer and our intended positioning. Furthermore, the strong underlying concept helps us to tell the right story and shapes all of our messaging.

Not only are we very happy with the work that was produced, but the journey we went through, helped us to better understand ourselves. Bretom acted with the upmost professionalism throughout and helped guide us through every stage of this process, whilst ensuring that the project stayed on-plan. I thoroughly recommend Bretom and will be delighted to work with them on projects in the future.’

Adam, Vario Client Development Manager, December 2017