For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology

A global nonprofit organization founded by well-known inventor Dean Kamen, FIRST is dedicated to improving education and interest in science. The company touches the lives of nearly 700,000 kids globally through its robotics programs. Kamen, holder of more than 1000 patents and founder of DEKA Research and Development, set a vision for the organization to “create a world where science and technology are celebrated…where young people dream of becoming science and technology heroes.”

The identity of FIRST is an excellent example of a grass-roots creation that takes a life of its own through its application. Unlike regimented corporate programs, the company’s symbol is applied freely to just about everything imaginable inside and outside event venues – by FIRST staff, by the thousands of teams and fans, and by the many corporate sponsors and partners contributing time and resources.

Tenet Partners donated its services and talents to helping FIRST create a new logo and signature system that updates its image, solves a range of application issues, and clarifies the structure of the growing nonprofit’s numerous offerings.

Tenet Partners recognized in Gartner® Market Guide for Brand Consultancies

New York, NY (February 5, 2024) – Tenet Partners has been recognized by Gartner® in its Market Guide for Brand Consultancies for the second year running, making specific mention of our focus on data-driven insights and forecasting. This recognition is a continued acknowledgement of the services, capabilities and insights that Tenet brings to brand leaders as they seek to elevate brand strategy, architecture, activation and visual identity.

Industry Report: Tenet Partners recognized in Gartner® Market Guide for Brand Consultancies

The Q4 2023 Market Guide notes that CMOs continue to recognize the links between brand investment and business value, resulting in prioritization of brand projects. This aligns with other recent Gartner research: According to the 2023 Gartner Brand Leaders Survey, 82% of brand leaders are pessimistic about the ongoing economic and business climate impact on their brands, but more than 50% would fight to keep their brand spending steady even when faced with the prospect of cutting performance marketing.

Brand strategy and activation were among the top three areas where surveyed CMOs reported significant capability gaps that stand in the way of achieving business goals. 46% of respondents reported in increase in budgets for brand strategy and activation across marketing programs and operational areas.

Turning to emerging trends that are transforming branding and marketing—and helping to address, at least in part, the capability gaps uncovered in the Brand Leaders Survey—the Market Guide encourages CMOs to “recognize the evolving and widespread capabilities of GenAI in order to best determine how the agencies are responsibly using GenAI internally and to support client deliverables.”

In our opinion, this Gartner guide offers useful framework for key considerations and action items for CMOs as they begin a brand consultancy search. This includes critical AI capabilities across generative, machine learning, natural language processing and advanced forecasting needed for consumer insights, optimizing ROI and enhancing brand management.

We believe that the statements in the guide accurately reflect Tenet’s own views on the role of brand consultancies. “The consumer climate is becoming more challenging for brand owners, and they will continue to need help developing and refining their brands to stay competitive. The importance of brand to attract and retain customers, potential employees and investors is growing.

CMOs are increasingly responsible for managing brand and the role it plays in conveying an organization’s purpose and priorities, and recognizing that internal capabilities to deliver deep brand strategy work are lacking. Thus, reliance on brand strategy agencies should continue to grow.”

Read the full Gartner report, Market Guide for Brand Consultancies, (accessible to Gartner subscribers ID G00770939).

*Gartner, “Market Guide for Brand Consultancies”, By Analyst(s): Julie Reeves, Jay Wilson. Published 25 October 2023

GARTNER is a registered trademark and service mark of Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and internationally and is used herein with permission. All rights reserved. Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s Research & Advisory organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.

About Tenet Partners

Tenet Partners is a brand innovation firm that transforms organizations through a blend of insights, strategy, design and AI technology. Our mission is to help companies create brand value and open possibilities in today’s digital-driven and customer-focused world.

For more information, please contact:
Jessica McHie
Business Development and Marketing
Tenet Partners
+ 1 212 329-3166

Cadence Bank

Cadence Bank

From rich history to bright future


After BancorpSouth and Cadence Bank – both leading financial institutions serving the southern United States – completed their merger in late 2021, a new corporate brand was needed to unify the company internally and signal the arrival of a new and stronger organization to customers and communities across the region.


The challenge for the new Cadence Bank brand was to communicate a value proposition that would capture the experience that made the organization stand out as something different.

The brand also had to unify the organization while retaining the strong equity of both legacy brands in terms of visual identity, service and culture—and provide a springboard for the future.


Research quickly revealed common strengths across the two legacy organizations that differentiated them: deep expertise, a focus on listening first, personal service and strong relationships with customers, among employees and within communities. Taken together, these attributes helped both organizations provide guidance in the way that’s most meaningful and helpful to their customers.

Tenet saw a warm, personal approach distinct from that of many larger financial services companies: an urge to meet people where they are on their financial journeys, develop and sustain long-term relationships, and provide the flexibility required to meet individual customer needs. It is not uncommon, for example, for customers to be greeted by name when they go to a branch.

This shared culture and the personality attributes that shape it led to a new brand promise: “Ease your day. And your mind.” The concept of ease was central to positioning as well, providing a way to tell a rich and nuanced story that goes beyond “we make banking easy.” At Cadence, ease is as much a mindset as an operating principle. It’s as much about creating convenience as it is about putting customers’ minds at ease.

The visual, sonic and verbal brand identity stands out in the marketplace as something fresh and new while being rooted in the proud history of both companies—showing how two leaders have joined under the new Cadence brand. Together, these elements evoke a strong sense of people and community that complements all aspects of the customer experience. It puts weight and credibility behind the new tagline: “Helping opportunity take shape.”

Notably, Tenet designers found a way to echo the highly recognizable BancorpSouth gumtree logo with a completely new take on the iconic symbol. Since the Cadence name was retained, it was important for BancorpSouth employees and customers to see themselves reflected in the new logo. By evoking the gumtree through color and perfectly balanced shapes working in harmony to complement the name, the logo provides a clear link to the past while moving the brand forward.

The brand rollout was supported by an extensive communications and employee engagement program, including regular communications on a dedicated internal microsite and the company intranet. Tenet and the Cadence team also implemented a “train the trainer” program for Cadence Bank brand ambassadors—selected individuals who went on to immerse thousands of employees in the new brand, focusing attention on the Cadence Bank culture and values, and the part that employees play in the customer experience.


The resulting brand is a clear reflection of the very best of legacy BancorpSouth and Cadence, coming together to create a new, modern and human-centric financial services organization. According to the client, the brand has generated an overwhelmingly positive response from thousands of employees and customers, and has won awards for the bank.

“One of the aspects we’ve liked most about Tenet Partners’ approach is their ability to effectively balance art and science when developing our new brand. They are exceptionally strong in both areas, which is rare for a branding agency.”
– Jackie Hooper, SVP, Chief Marketing Officer, Cadence Bank



Showing a commitment to sustainability 


When Dow decided to incorporate sustainability into its brand strategy as a key competitive element, it turned to Tenet Partners for help. In a project that grew in scope over time, the Tenet and Dow teams collaborated to develop a robust framework to support what Dow is doing today as well as its ongoing sustainability evolution. The result is a fully-evolved set of brands  that bring the framework to life.


Dow’s sustainability branding strategy went far deeper than putting a sustainability spin on its existing portfolio. Dow chose to tangibly demonstrate its long-term commitment to environmental sustainability by creating a brand architecture around the idea of “Sustainability Science.”

While a vitally important global initiative, this was not to be an overhaul of the existing Dow architecture and identity. The key challenge was to both fit within and complement the existing Dow enterprise brand; the sustainability brands had to be unmistakably “Dow” while also being distinctive.


The multifaceted project started with brand architecture. In a highly collaborative engagement, the Tenet strategy team took Dow’s ideas as a starting point and developed the concept of “sustainability pillars” under an overarching Sustainability Science umbrella that encompasses all sustainability activities at Dow. Each pillar is dedicated to a specific area of focus: carbon reduction, bio-based materials, recycled content, circular design, biodegradable materials and resource efficiency.

With Dow being a large, matrixed organization, consensus building was crucial. Working closely with Dow, the Tenet team developed a complete sustainability brand architecture, brand platform, pillar descriptors and brand names, messaging, logos and a visual system along with governance planning and implementation, including employee training.

All work was based on qualitative research as well as an extensive verbal and visual audit of Dow and its competitors, including Dow’s corporate sustainability initiatives and reporting around its 2025 and 2050 sustainability goals.

Using these insights along with the existing Dow brand guidelines, Tenet focused on key strategic, verbal and visual opportunities that would enable Sustainability Science to fit seamlessly into the overarching Dow brand while having a life of its own. The nomenclature, messaging, logos and flexible, scalable visual system are consistent with Dow brand guidelines while referencing sustainability benefits.

By uniquely expressing elements already present in the Dow brand such as color, the new system conveys a nature-inspired feel that separates the sustainability brands from Dow’s corporate identity while dovetailing with it – a system within a system. As a result, Sustainability Science enables Dow to both retain the integrity of its core enterprise brand while opening up new pathways for the future.


With a strong and distinctive sustainability-focused branding approach that is unmistakably “Dow” while carving out its own distinctive niche, Dow is clearly communicating its commitment to the future both verbally and visually. The company is now introducing its sustainability brand and governance across all business units, communication functions and with partner agencies globally in preparation for a global rollout.

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