New GEM Truck.jpg

GEM Rebranding Adds New Sparkle to Company Image

May 23, 2019
After more than 15 years with the same "look," the team at GEM Plumbing, Heating, Cooling and Electric shook things up with some bold new colors.

GEM Plumbing & Heating Services, based in Lincoln, Rhode Island, recently completed a major rebranding, with a bold color palette not often seen in the HVAC contracting world. As a result, the company’s vehicles are impossible to miss, as technicians make their way around GEM’s New England territory. 

ABOVE: GEM's new look on a service vehicle. The old design is below.

Jennifer D’Ambra, vice president of operations, and a 2017 Contracting Business Woman of the Year, said the rebranding —with bright colors of orange, teal and yellow —was a bold decision, one that was meant to “disrupt” people’s normal perceptions. Encouraged by positive results in consumer surveys, the team believes the new look will be another game changer in the company’s more than 70-year history of service to the community.

The finalist branding options by KickCharge Creative, as provided to consumers at local shopping areas.

The previous GEM logo had been in place for over 15 years, so it was time for a change. And with today’s advancements in truck wrapping, the possibilities of what they could do were almost endless. 

“It was a big decision for us. The vehicles now look like something you would not recognize as a typical contracting truck: bold and bright, with a simple design,” D’Ambra said. “Contractors think they have to put every piece of information possible on their trucks, and when it goes by, it’s barely recognizable due to the visual clutter.”

GEM owners Larry, Lenny and Eddy Gemma model the shirts that feature GEM’s new company colors.

D’Ambra said the new branding — by Dan Antonelli of KickCharge Creative, Washington, N.J. — sticks out in an almost uncomfortable way. However, the team’s market research provided the assurance they needed to know they were on the right visual track. The process was led in-house by Jenny Preservati, GEM’s business development manager, who has been a blessing to the GEM team since she joined just one year ago.

“Dan provided two color combinations: navy/apple green, and teal/orange/yellow. Research was conducted outside of local stores and other places of business. After initial results showed a 2-to-1 reference for the bolder colors of teal/orange/yellow, a second, more far-reaching survey was conducted. The teal/orange/yellow — a color combination known as ‘aisle violators’ in the design world —was again chosen 2-to-1,” D’Ambra said. “Most people surveyed said blue is the color they associate with contractors, however their eyes were drawn to the other combination."

The survey involved putting the differing color combinations in front of consumers at local shopping centers.

The completed wraps for the entire fleet are being manufactured by Cool Air Creations Inc., Smithfield, RI.

GEM Plumbing & Heating Services, LLC, Lincoln, RI — is a $48 million residential, commercial and mechanical HVAC, plumbing and electrical services giant, founded in 1949 by Gloria and Larry Gemma, Jenn’s grandmother and grandfather. Today, the GEM company is managed by brothers Larry, Lenny, and Eddy Gemma, and several other family members are actively involved in daily operations.

About the Author

Terry McIver | Content Director - CB

A career publishing professional, Terence 'Terry' McIver has served three diverse industry publications in varying degrees of responsibility since 1987, and worked in marketing communications for a major U.S. corporation.He joined the staff of Contracting Business magazine in April 2005.

As director of content for Contracting Business, he produces daily content and feature articles for CB's 38,000 print subscribers and many more Internet visitors. He has written hundreds, if not two or three, pieces of news, features and contractor profile articles for CB's audience of quality HVACR contractors. He can also be found covering HVACR industry events or visiting with manufacturers and contractors. He also has significant experience in trade show planning.