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Ikoniqa Rebrands to Grand Prix Studio

I’m excited to announce that Ikoniqa will be officially rebanding to Grand Prix Studio
Samuel Pawlak
Owner of Grand Prix Studio
November 9, 2022

I’m excited to announce that Ikoniqa will be officially rebanding to Grand Prix Studio. Unlike most press releases though, I wanted to write this up in the first person, talk about why this change is important, and give everyone some valuable insights they can use when naming their own race team, business, or other future venture (i.e., learn from our studio’s mistakes).

A Brief History of the Original Name, Ikoniqa

When I co-founded Ikoniqa in late 2018, the studio was not motorsports centric. In fact, we had no intentions at the time of really doing anything motorsports related. We were just a generalist design studio, working with businesses on brand strategy and design in the retail shopping, marketing, and e-commerce domains. The original studio name, Ikoniqa, was a completely fictitious name that was based on the word “iconic”. As far as brand studio names go, Ikoniqa fit right in.

But about a year into operations, the studio began specializing exclusively within motorsports after having some amazing early traction within the industry. Building bespoke solutions for motorsports was now our focus, and as a life-long motorsports fan myself, I knew we had really solid founder market fit here.  

The Studio’s Reason for Changing its Name

Grand Prix Studio may not be as intriguing or cool sounding as Ikoniqa was, but functionally, it makes a lot more sense. There were two key reasons why the name was ultimately changed.

Firstly, Ikoniqa Was Always Difficult to Place

When people would see “ikoniqa”, namely on decals or in media, this new fictitious word to the viewer was completely meaningless. It lacked context. Now, fictitiously named marks are nothing new, but unless people know exactly what to associate it with (usually through repetitive exposure), it’s really hard to build any brand equity in a prospective customer’s mind.

As one of clients put it, “it’s a bit like the Mercedes F1 team’s INEOS sponsor…I see it on their car, but I have no idea what INEOS is, nor am that interested in looking them up either”. With Grand Prix Studio being a more self-descriptive name, new viewers will more easily be able infer that we’re most likely a business within the motorsports marketing sector by default. I refer to this as “increasing your brand’s velocity”.

Visually Appealing but Functionally Falling Short

I love the ethos of the Ikoniqa name. Visually, I think the brand and the Ikoniqa logomark was well executed (I am very bias though). From a communication standpoint though, it had a lot of shortcomings within motorsports specifically that we did not account for (nor could we have).

For example, it was often misspelled (swapping of the Q and the K was common), and not everyone knew how to pronounce it. If the studio had stayed the path of being a generalist brand studio, this probably wouldn’t be a concern. But motorsport is a totally different domain. Brand recognition at the track, word of mouth exchanges in the paddock, and the ability to easily understand the who, what, and why of our business quickly are all factors that need to be considered when choosing a name within motorsports.    

Where Grand Prix Studio as a Name Excels

Grand Prix Studio. The term is universally understood within motorsports. It even refers to both 2 wheel and 4 wheel racing formats, both of which we cater to. The studio name is also more self-descriptive now, which will help tremendously with first impressions, and help people get a sense of who we are much faster. And lastly, this name now cements the studio’s dedication and specialization exclusively to motorsports.

New Studio Email, Domain, and More

For now, our old domain, www.ikoniqa.com, will redirect you to our new domain, www.grandprixstudio.com. You can also still reach us via the old @ikoniqa.com emails you may have stored in your inbox contacts.

Our new contact email for first time inquiries is – hello@grandprix.studio

That’s right, not “.com”, “.studio”…Although if you do accidentally use the “.com” email, it’ll still get where it needs to go.

Over the next few weeks, you’ll see the new name fully implemented across all domains we occupy. You’ll also see a new user interface across our website too, if you haven’t noticed already in some areas.

The Launching of Two New Services

Later this month, Grand Prix Studio will be launching two new paths for clients / customers to engage with us outside of the traditional client / studio model.

A Big Thank You

Seriously, I wanted to add a massive thank you to everyone who’s supported this studio to date. From our amazing and loyal client base who entrusts us with their businesses, to are past and present partners on track, to the people who made iRacing liveries of our brand for no other reason than they thought we were kinda cool. Thank you, and I can’t wait to see what’s around the bend for Grand Prix Studio!

Grand Prix Studio Cover image with night time race track and streaking teal tail lights of race cars