Give a Shout Out, Get a Shout Out


We created the dynamic Shout Out brand—including program name, logo, tagline, outreach collateral, and incentive pin—to help HMSHost recognize and celebrate their awesome associates.

This pilot program expanded into a company-wide program.

HMSHost is a global restaurateur and leader in travel dining for airports and motorways, with restaurants in over 120 worldwide airports as well as 99 turnpike travel plaza stops in North America.

This pilot program expanded into a company-wide program.

HMSHost asked Novak Birch to create a program that recognizes associates—ranging from line cooks to finance professionals—who provide excellent service. The program seeks to:

  • Cultivate a happy, healthy work environment that drives positive morale and makes associates proud of what they do.
  • Show appreciation to associates for a job well done.
  • Foster peer-to-peer teamwork and employee retention rates.

This pilot program expanded into a company-wide program.

Since the recognition program was being implemented across the entire organization, the brand and outreach materials needed to resonate with wide-ranging audiences, such as servers, cashiers, maintenance professionals, managers, and finance associates who work remotely.

Novak Birch created a high-impact, yet approachable brand that connects with all associates. The Shout Out program materials include authentic messaging that encourages associates and managers to give recognition cards to those who do a good job and inspires associates to provide good service to receive cards and earn the incentive pin. To drive engagement, associates are invited to post a selfie on social media with the program hashtag. Novak Birch created the following components:

  • Program name: The Shout Out program name is friendly and appeals to all audiences. It also conveys the call-to-action.
  • Logo: The logo’s clean lines and color palette establish the brand’s approachable yet professional tone, while the speech bubbles represent shout outs.
  • Tagline: “Give a Shout Out, Get a Shout Out” reinforces the two-pronged call-to-action: 1) to give associates recognition cards, and 2) to do good work and earn a pin.
  • Poster: The eye-catching poster attracts attention with a playful headline, followed by the call-to-action. Then, it explains how to give and get shout outs and introduces the incentive.
  • Recognition cards: The cards include complimentary phrases in speech bubbles, space to write a thank-you note, and an invitation to share shout outs via social media.
  • Incentive pin: As the program reward, the pin is a personal component that associates can wear and be proud of. We linked the program directly to associates by including the word “superstar,” showing gratitude and letting others know about their good work.
  • Logo style guide: We created a style guide to ensure proper and consistent logo usage.

This pilot program expanded into a company-wide program.

HMSHost successfully rolled out the Shout Out program in three test markets (Chicago, Columbus, and Atlanta). Next, they will launch the program in locations throughout the country.

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Novak Birch

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