Ferritiva Brand Research & Design

May 2022-August 2022
Project Overview
Ferritiva is an innovative, venture-backed startup developing an accessible, non-invasive iron deficiency screening tool. Ferritiva's mission is for people to lead healthy, holistic lives supported by healthcare products.

The goal of this project was to develop a branding design for the company and to create communicative pitching material.
My Role
User Experience Designer
User Research, Design Research, Branding and Visual Design, Customer Discovery, Marketing
Ferritiva was unanimously accepted to the University of Illinois' iVenture Accelerator, an educational accelerator program for top student startups at the University of Illinois.

I joined Ferritiva as the sole UX designer and researcher of the company.

I had the incredible opportunity to create the logo and branding for this innovative startup. Throughout the summer, I was tasked with developing the company's branding from the ground up and creating marketing materials such as investment pitch decks and advertising merchandise. 

Working with Ferritiva and the iVenture program as their only designer allowed me to grow personally and professionally. I built my foundation as a designer as I worked with iVenture Accelerator’s design team and industry professionals to learn about UX design while developing Ferritiva’s branding.
Customer Discovery
At the time I joined Ferritiva, the startup was finalizing its target user demographic and researching the possible applications of its product. During this time, I took the initiative to contribute to the customer discovery process in order to understand the user I was designing for.

Prior to and throughout the design process, our team conducted 46 customer discovery interviews. We iteratively determined the customer demographic as people who experienced or interacted with iron deficiency through their occupation, athletics, blood donation, pregnancy, lifestyle, or during their adolescence. The following graph depicts the demographic breakdown of the individuals we interviewed. As Ferritiva was created initially to help athletes who experience iron deficiency, the major user groups we interviewed were athletes and professionals in the medical field who treat iron deficiency and anemia.
During the customer discovery process, I created three user personas to ​​further understand users' needs, experiences, behaviors, and goals. I chose to develop personas for three target demographic groups: pregnant individuals, adolescents, and athletes. Individuals from these demographic most commonly experience iron deficiency so I sought to further understand these user groups. This process allowed me to view iron-level testing from the perspective of our potential customers.
Understanding the User
Through the customer discovery process, I gained an understanding of users’ emotions and experiences surrounding iron deficiency. Further, I utilized the data to surmise the messaging they sought to receive from a product. Our mission at Ferritiva is to empower individuals by providing accessible healthcare. Throughout these interviews and field research, I understood that treating iron deficiency can lead to improved energy levels, stamina, and improved health. Therefore, above all else, I wanted to communicate energy and vitality in my design.
Design Research
Color Palette:
Through healthcare design research, I discovered the prevalence of the color blue in products and marketing. When regarding major industry providers, blue appears in over 85% of healthcare logos as it portrays knowledge, security, and trust.

Ferritiva’s mission revolves around helping individuals experience a healthy lifestyle with renewed vigor and stamina. As I considered communicating energy through the logo and branding to be crucial, I sought to center the brand color palette around this messaging. I conducted research through a literature review in healthcare design branding principles and color psychology. Through this process, I discovered the color orange is proven to communicate messages of energy and enthusiasm in branding.

From this, I decided to center the design around blue and orange and supplement the remaining colors accordingly. Using blue and orange as a basis, I chose shades of yellow and green to be complimenting colors.
Design Ideation
As Ferritiva is a growing startup, my goal was to have the logo encompass the company’s vision to bring identity to the brand. I began by using the name Ferritiva as inspiration for the design. Ferritiva’s name was derived as a play on ferritin and saliva as ferritin is a common biomarker for evaluating iron storage in the body and saliva is the sample matrix used by the company.
I began brainstorming by drawing visual inspiration from looking at polypeptide chains that make up a protein. Ferritin, the iron storage biomolecule that Ferritiva looks for to measure iron levels in the body, is a protein that has this structure. I sought to use the hexagonal shapes from certain amino acids to link the design with iron. I brainstormed having the hexagonal structure surrounding the ‘Fe’ in Ferritiva as iron’s atomic symbol is Fe.

The image below depicts the original sketching I did while brainstorming the logo using a ferritin structure:
Through design iteration and collaboration with the iVenture design team, I developed a logo using Procreate and Adobe Illustrator that utilized data from my healthcare design research with visual similarity to a ferritin structure. This logo was designed not only to communicate the company’s mission of energy and health, but also provide a sort of easter egg to potential investors from a medical background.
Brand Design
After designing Ferritiva’s logo, I then created the company’s branding centered around the logo. I developed a brand book for the company’s use in marketing and product design. This brand book encapsulates the following branding I developed including various components such as the logo, logo mark, color palette, and iconography.
The branding I developed is used throughout Ferritiva’s online presence and marketing in addition to the physical iron-level screening device. Here the logo mark I developed is used on the prototype of the tool:
As I learned through working with a startup, it is important to be flexible and wear different hats. In addition to UX design, my role included marketing for Ferritiva during iVenture Accelerator’s annual Demo Day, a major networking event and showcase. I created a presentation for our team to pitch Ferritiva at this showcase in order to bring awareness to the startup as well as network with potential investors.

Here are a few of the slides I developed that are used for Ferritiva’s marketing and Demo Day pitch:
Key Takeaways
Working with Ferritiva was my first time delving into the industry side of HCI and UX. It was an enriching experience filled with learning and growth. Here are some of the key concepts I learned that I will carry with me to my future endeavors:
  • Focus on the task at hand: Throughout this summer I had various tasks to juggle along with developing Ferritiva’s branding. Trying to do too many tasks at once led to less progress and disorganization in my work. Instead, I learned how to prioritize the task at hand to commit my full effort and rotate focus when needed.
  • Iteration is part of the process: Creating designs from scratch with minimal guidelines lead to continuous iteration through brainstorming and possible directions. This process led to some exhaustion but I learned how this iteration is part of the design process. By progressing through various designs and details, I was able to grow as a designer and finalize a design that was an optimized product of previous iterations.
  • Don't be afraid to ask for help: While I was the only designer at Ferritiva, I was a part of a larger cohort of iVenture Accelerator. Throughout the summer, I learned how to lean on others when needed in order to learn and grow from collaboration. Both receiving and providing advice and assistance to other designers in my cohort allowed me to become a better designer and learn more about the UX design field.
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