Art Direction | UI & Visual Design
LegalShield is an American corporation owned underneath the PPLSI (Pre-Paid Legal Services) umbrella with locations in the United States and Canada.
As the senior visual designer, my role was to lead, and art direct the overall look and feel of the marketing site with any marketing/brand material that aligned with the rebrand, including but not limited to the brand style guide, social, and email campaigns.
This case study walks you through the process of how we approached LegalShield’s rebrand. Before we began designing, we took a deep dive into our competitor analysis and research to identify how we could create a brand that felt more accessible to our customers. As a result, we encountered setbacks and feedback from customers and our stakeholders, ultimately improving the design and product.
LegalZoom.com, Inc. is an online legal technology company that helps its customers create legal documents without necessarily having to hire a lawyer similar to LegalShield.
As our main competitor, we were impressed by their website’s ease of use and the clean minimal aesthetic of the site. The goal of this refresh was to compete with the silicon valley tech giant to attract Millenials and Gen Z.
Like LegalZoom and LegalShield, RocketLawyer provides individuals and small to medium-sized businesses with online legal services.
RocketLawyer’s competitor analysis was adjacent to LegalShield. Although not inspired by the website design, the website’s user flow is relatively easy to use compared to the LegalShield website before the refresh.
After reviewing our competitor analysis, our team created a mood board of marketing landing pages we felt were visually compelling and would be a good example of our LegalShield rebrand.
We felt the sites that conveyed a clear and concise message were Airbnb, Starbucks, Dropbox, and Wix. Although these companies weren’t in the legal service industry, the purpose of the site refresh was to scale LegalShield’s brand similarly to Airbnb and Lyft, and we were attracted to the user flow of their marketing sites.
The previous designer started with the Canadian LegalShield site for the brand refresh. However, LegalShield Canada’s strategy felt overall too dark. In addition, the navigation wasn’t accessible with the white typography over the images, and the shield shape was overused (also looked too close to RocketLawyer’s styling). Overall, the site felt like it wasn’t heading where we envisioned the LegalShield brand to go.
We had a tight deadline to make design updates for the USA site to launch shortly after LegalShield Canada. Therefore, our team decided to reuse existing module patterns the developers built for the Canada site by updating those designs using the componentized patterns.
We wanted to avoid the shield shape because of RocketLawyer’s branding, but we still wanted to use the shape subtly. So we were inspired by part of the curve of the LegalShield logo giving the nod to the shield without it feeling too obvious.
The previous design felt too heavy, so we added white space throughout the pages by introducing the pastels as the floods of color. The bright LegalShield purple is only used for links and calls to action.
After reviewing with the stakeholders, we agreed only to use the varied pastel colors that weren’t in the purple family for marketing materials and emails. Therefore, the dominant color palette used for LegalShield USA is pastel purple, dark purple, light grey, white, and charcoal.
When building the style guide for LegalShield’s brand, we integrated our marketing strategy across platforms such as events, social, design systems/style guides, and email campaigns when refreshing the brand.
Our email strategy and design had inconsistent styling across the board. We were drawing from the new brand we had created for our marketing site to streamline the styling when art directing the marketing emails. These marketing emails are an example of using the other pastel colors for campaigns to vary the emotional response to our email campaigns.
PPLSI Spring International
The international convention is held in the fall and spring twice a year. This convention event was unique because it commemorates the 50th anniversary of LegalShield, founded by Harland Stonecipher. See the live site here.
When designing for the website, to save time, we found a Webflow template where the wireframe had the base of what we were looking for on the event site. My role was to art direction and design the overall look and feel for the convention. In addition, I incorporated the new brand styling colors and sourced the imagery for the site with the event marketing manager.
In conclusion, I was incredibly proud of the tremendous amount of work we produced in a short 4 months. When leading the design and look and feel for LegalShield, I wouldn’t have been able to execute the rebrand without collaborating with our team to produce a product we felt proud of in the end.
Stephanie Hasham (Principle UX Designer), Emily Lindburg (Director of Operations), Christian Forgety (UX Designer), Nolan Voss (Lead Developer), Holden Bell (Event Marketing Manager), and the rest of the development team at LegalShield.