Rosso The Elephant is the third longest serving member of the Brilliant team, having started life on a dusty street outside a pet food shop in Holbeck, Leeds. We’d driven past him on a daily basis and so he had spent a few long weeks curb side, waiting patiently for someone to rescue him from resin animal hell.
One day on a whim, we finally decided to stop and take a look.
Standing proudly in amongst a motley crew of (accurately painted) resin animals, he stood out like a sore thumb.
‘What’s with the red elephant?’ We asked.
‘A mistake’, said the shop owner, accidentally sprayed red instead of grey, ‘and who’d bloody want it like that!?’
Now we certainly didn’t NEED a big red elephant, and he was definitely way too big for our then tiny office. Plus he was expensive! (Turns out bargains were not to be had even on a mistakenly painted elephant).
‘We’ll take him!’
The shop owner was confused, didn’t we want to wait until the following week when the correct grey elephant showed up? Well no, actually we didn’t. We wanted the red elephant.
He was of course sad to leave his friends, the resin bulldog, the resin gorilla and of course the resin crocodile. But we promised him a happy life, and occasional cleaning behind the ears.
So Rosso has now been with us for many years, finally arriving in our current office with actual space for him to stand in and a jungle of plants to keep him company.
‘What’s with the red elephant?’ people ask when they see him. ‘What does it mean? What’s the significance?’
He came on a road trip once to London, where Laurra was doing a talk at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair. We’d run out of time to build a stand so we thought, let’s just take Rosso, at least it will be memorable! So we anchored him down in the back of a van and drove him down the M1 for the trip of a lifetime.
‘What’s with the red elephant?’ They said when we got there.
On a 2×2 stand it’s safe to say he WAS the entire stand!
So Laurra did her talk and directed people to find her at the stand with the big red elephant.
‘Ah marketing… it’s like the elephant in the room!’
‘It’s red because it’s different, so it stands out in a sea of grey.’
‘It’s disruptive, just like brands need to be.’
Err yeah, yeah that’s exactly what we meant.
When we rebranded it was touch and go as to whether Rosso (then very red) would tie in with our new pink and teal colour scheme. Nothing a bit of spray paint in the car park wouldn’t fix. So now he’s more Rosa coloured than Rosso but he does match the decor and he seems pretty content to have been given a new lease of life.
So there you go, that’s the story of Rosso the Red Elephant. He’ll look forward to meeting you if you come and visit the Brilliant office.