Goin’ Nuts with App Branding


Use It Don’t Lose It ensures you’ll never waste money on a gift card again. Frustrated by the thousands of dollars consumers ARE losing each and every day on expired gift cards, the passionate UIDLI team, headed by Director Tim Kelly, set about establishing a convenient app that reminds consumers to use their gift cards on time.

Director Tim Kelly approached me to help turn an intangible idea he had been researching and dreaming about for over 2 years into a tangible reality. That was the start of a year-long project bringing his branding, app, website and other marketing material together. Tim didn’t come from a background of app development, but he was passionate about something he viewed as a glaring consumer issue and wanted to right the situation to help hundreds of people stop wasting their money! We were tasked with creating from scratch a first in its class system in which people could register their gift cards for reminders, so they would never forget to use them again.
Built on the pillars of being helpful, fun and innovative, the brand was developed with a unique concept to stand out amongst the vast number of apps in the market. I proposed the concept of an animal mascot as a personal, approachable and memorable figurehead for the brand. The squirrel was chosen around the idea that we often squirrel away our gift cards, causing them to never see the light of day again! It was an extremely fun concept that had the legs (and fluffy tail) to be extended in so many different ways.

The character Sebastian was developed as your friendly, furry gift card assistant, always on hand with his ear to the pulse via his headset to save your bacon before your gift cards and other expirable items go past their used by date! He featured a headset to make him look like an assistant, a watch to show he’s organised and he always carries an acorn with a bow, to reflect a gift he’s transporting somewhere — his prized possession. We then had Roy, the clumsy, forgetful, ‘what not to do’ character, who is always dropping his acorn and in a state of panic.

A vibrant, engaging colour palette of blue, yellow, green and orange was used. The bright yellow colour was used as the app background colour to really stand out on the smart phone app screen. For the website, the background colour alternated between the different colours depending on what page you were on.
We had lots of fun with the brand language, using all sorts of squirrel puns and simple, colloquial language to extend the fun theme. We had a tagline “We’re nuts about protecting what’s yours”.

I created lots of fun scenes for Sebastian the Squirrel throughout the brand experience. For example, for the EDMS (email newsletters) which send users the reminders, there were a series of header illustrations. The closer users got to their expiry date, the more dire Sebastian’s situation became. We even had Sebastian on top of a vintage car impersonating John Travolta in Grease!
Brand Identity Design
Responsive Website Design
IOS & Andriod App Design
EDM Reminder Series Design
Social Media Advertising


Working closely with Emma to this point, I can honestly say, hand on heart, that I could not have a more dedicated and conscientious person on my side.Emma has an innate ability to instantly understand what message needs to be conveyed. Timeliness of service and delivery is second to none as is Emma’s communication and unwavering professional approach.

I would, and have, described Emma as a person you need to get on board with your project if you want timely, professional and quality graphic results. Emma just gets it first time and I have no doubt that Emma’s work is crucial to the success of our project.”

Tim Kelly

Director, Use It Don't Lose It

The app was designed for the Apple & Android Platforms, incorporating all the elements of the brand include the characters, colours, typography and brand language, while focusing on a great, intuitive user experience.

Two infographics were created to explain the issue with lost and forgotten gift cards. One for the consumers and one for the retailers. These were a fun, visual way to explain some detailed stats and topics.