Our Work / Cardian

Building a Brand for a Fully Indoor Premium Second Hand Car Dealership

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Client Testimonial


Gary Pierse, Managing Director

We first worked with Tony Frawley and his team on the branding element of a new business we started in 2019. Start to finish we found it both a great experience for all our team involved in creating our brand but also understanding our own values and those of our customers. Since finishing that project we have continued to work with Tony and his team on the marketing side of both our businesses, their expertise and guidance have been of major benefit to us, cannot recommend Tony and all at Frawley highly enough.

The Background

Cardian is a fully indoor premium second hand car dealership in Limerick that steers car buyers clear with transparent deals and honest customer experience. Cardian is for car buyers looking for high quality second hand vehicles in the Midwest region, who need a hassle free and personalised buying experience.

Brand Objectives

1. Build a scalable brand that is synonymous for honesty and transparency.

2. Develop a set of core values to foster team culture amongst employees. 

The Brief

We commenced this branding project by conducting customer research to understand existing perceptions of the parent brand Pierse Motors before developing a brand for a new second hand car dealership business.

Once we collected and analysed market insights, we proposed strategic recommendations for the new master brand ‘Cardian’ that aligned with its business strategy and the parent brand.

Subsequent to the brand strategy’s approval, we designed a distinctive brand identity that aligned with the brand’s positioning and applied it’s look and feel across a number of key brand touchpoints.

Brand Research & Insights

Client research unearthed the following key insights:

1. Customer’s key challenge when buying second hand cars is the minefield of ‘untrustworthy’ UK imports and ‘backstreet garages’ that flood the market.

2. Pierse Motors’ customers feel looked after, whether it’s a member of staff dropping a car into Limerick City to view or not having to ask for mud-flaps and a full tank of diesel on departure.

3. Pierse Motors are true, stand over their word and treat each customer with the same level of friendliness and professionalism no matter what the purchase.

Brand Strategy

Brand Naming

Attributes of trust and transparency have built long-term brand loyalty and research insights paint the picture of Pierse Motor’s as a ‘guardian’ for second hand car buyers i.e. “a person who protects or defends something.” ‘Cardian’ is an invented word that categorises the brand in the automotive industry while communicating ‘protection’.

Leveraging Parent Brand Equity with a Secondary Message

Locking up the message ‘Part of the Pierse Motors Group’ within the brand identity – transfers the positive brand equity of trust and transparency, hard earned by the Pierse Motors brand into the new ‘Cardian’ brand. It de-risks a car buyer’s decision to purchase a premium second hand car from a newly established business.

Brand Positioning

The positioning message, ‘Steering You Clear’ speaks directly to the car buyer, assuring them that Pierse Motors will guide their purchase with ‘clear’ transparency and honesty. It is acknowledges the dangers of buying from untrustworthy second hand dealers present in the market. The idiom ‘to steer clear’ is “to avoid someone or something that seems unpleasant, dangerous, or likely to cause problems.”

Brand Vision

Driving Trust, Transparency and Traceability in Ireland’s second hand car market


Brand Mission

Caring for our Customers and their Cars


Brand Identity Design 

Logotype Rationale

As an invented word, we determined that the logotype would be best suited to capitals. This gives the name strength and a solid basis to create a memorable piece of bespoke typography.

We used Kobehavn Black as the starting point for the logotype. Each letter was adapted to suit the ‘Guardian Angel’ concept. We added winglike serifs to the letterforms to give a sense of momentum – this is a brand on the move.

Secondary Typography

Montserrat SemiBold and ExtraBold complete the logotype signifying the provenance of the Cardian brand.

Halo Symbol

To complete the logotype we added a halo, carefully centred over the ‘A’ as a nod to each team member – acting as each customer’s ‘Cardian Angel’.

Colour Palette

In colour psychology, purple represents luxury and is the dominant colour of this brand, connecting to the premium quality of the second hand cars being sold. The secondary message’s colour is blue to convey trust and the symbol is grey, representing reliability of Cardian’s people.


The ‘Stamp of Cardianship’

Integral to the brand is the care and attention given to the customer. During the sketching process we noticed that the letters ‘C’ and ‘A’ could be arranged to create an angelic form – the Cardian Angel. We decided to push this and create a bespoke monogram that would become the visual embodiment of the brand mission:

‘Caring for Our Customers and their Cars’ applied to documentation such as contracts serves as an accreditation to signify the ‘Stamp of Cardianship’.

Brand Activation

Interior Design by tess-stanford.com

Branding & Marketing Solutions Delivered



  • Brand Audit & Analysis
  • Client Research & Insights
  • Customer Segmentation
  • Naming Strategy
  • Brand Positioning
  • Messaging Strategy


  • Brand Identity Design
  • Brand Guidelines
  • Stationery Design
  • Social Media Graphics
  • Building Signage  
  • Stamp of Cardianship


  • Strategy Workshops
  • Brand Launch Advisory

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