Naming, branding, and launching an arts and culture mobile app Bloomberg Connects


How do you test a smartphone app that is made for use in cultural institutions? First off, what do you even call it? That’s what Bloomberg Philanthropies asked Donovan/Green to help them with. We were tasked with naming and branding their smart phone app that acts as a free digital guide to cultural organizations around the world.



Brand system

We started with a discovery process to find the best name for an app that offers museum goers not just the ability to learn about the art and exhibitions, but to take a deeper dive into the work by sharing stories and information that aren’t easily available in the live exhibition. We wanted the idea of connection and the search for meaning to be present in the name and logo. After pouring over hundreds of names, we selected Bloomberg Connects, partnering it with a universally recognized magnifying glass icon.

The Frick Collection

Bloomberg Philanthropies needed to test the beta version of the Bloomberg Connects app in an actual museum setting and collect feedback from users. Donovan/Green designed, developed, and coordinated the user experience and launch of the first testing system at The Frick Collection. We worked with the team at Bloomberg Philanthropies and The Frick Collection staff to devise the clearest and most inviting experience for users to interact with the museum’s historic collection of art while using the app as a hand-held digital docent. The testing system included a custom distribution kiosk, curator-approved labels for the artwork, print and digital signage, brochures, phone cases, and other accessories to complete the branded experience. We composed a survey that the staff used to collect feedback from the test users who were then rewarded with a branded gift card.

The Guggenheim

We worked to build a reliable branded process for Bloomberg Philanthropies so they could launch a second testing system at the Guggenheim. Working directly with the staff, we blended the Bloomberg Connects experience seamlessly with the museum’s existing collection and visitor infrastructure.

As of Spring 2021, 16 months after its initial public launch, Bloomberg Connects boasts a 4.6 out of 5 rating on the Mac App Store and is now available in 30 languages for 18 international cultural institutions including Benjamin Franklin House, Black Cultural Archives, Central Park Conservancy, The Frick Collection, the Guggenheim, MoMA PS1, and the Serpentine Museum.