Samaritans rebrand to maintain relevance and broaden reach

Charlie Spargo's picture
by Charlie Spargo
Samaritans' rebrand

Suicide prevention charity Samaritans has undergone a modernising and sensitive rebrand amid worries its relevance was slipping.

The group, which was founded in 1953 as the world's first crisis telephone hotline for suicide prevention, wanted to encapsulate the mood of Britain, as well as establishing continued relevance and a wider reach.

Globally, suicide is the second-biggest cause of death among those aged 15 to 29. In the UK, it is the leading killer of men under the age of 45. 

After 18 months of surveying its actual and potential audience, Samaritans landed on a tone and visual style they believed would work. The finished concept was created by their in-house teams with the help of Spencer Du Bois.

One element that has changed is the tone of Samaritans' mission statement - "working together to make sure fewer people die by suicide" is now "...that fewer people take their own life", in the hopes this will have a softening effect without diluting the message.

There is a new logo too - green for positivity and hope, with a modern font to remain in the 21st century.

The main challenge was finding solutions appropriate to Samaritans' potentially very, very wide audience, coming from any and all background. They agreed that everyone can identify with the power of human connection, and have based much of the new branding on this principle. There is also much more focus on digital when it comes to reaching out.

Samaritans hope that this will increase the helpline's reach, increase funding, appeal to younger audiences, and communicate the way to get support before a 'crisis point'.