Case study: Metl-Span

Redefining an industrial company’s position in the marketplace

What do you do to set yourself apart from the competition—not only to grow your own business, but to expand the entire category? Learn how we helped Metl-Span create a complete shift in its company culture in order to better articulate its purpose internally and externally, and lay the foundation for future success.


Founded in 1968, Metl-Span is a pioneer and leading provider of insulated metal panels (IMPs) used in the construction of walls and roofs for commercial buildings.

IMPs create a single barrier against water, air, vapor and heat across the entire building envelope (i.e., the outermost layer of a building that separates the interior and exterior environments). As a leader in the category, Metl-Span offers an outstanding portfolio of products, but faced serious challenges in establishing a clear identity to differentiate itself from competitors and in growing the overall IMP market relative to alternative construction materials.

What could the brand do to drive growth in a radically shifting competitive landscape—not only for its own business, but for the IMP category overall?

  • Metl-Span print advertisements
  • Metl-Span tradeshow booth

How we partnered together

Significant qualitative and quantitative research was undertaken in order to develop a deep understanding of Metl-Span’s business, from its market to its consumers to the industries it serves. How and why do customers purchase IMPs? What are the drivers of those decisions? The insight we uncovered served as a foundation on which new brand positioning could be established and implemented companywide.

Bailey Brand Consulting and Metl-Span collaborated to achieve this in three key phases:

  1. To form a comprehensive picture of the market, Bailey conducted in-depth interviews and large-scale surveys with Metl-Span customers, potential customers and influencers across all segments. This enabled us to better understand which attributes and benefits were most valuable to architects and contractors when considering different materials. We were also able to build extensive perceptual maps to help define competitive brand equities and identify growth opportunities for the Metl-Span brand.
  2. Based on our findings, Bailey established a powerful new positioning platform focused around a single, simple concept: “Performance redefined.” This message directly reflected the attributes that mattered most to the market: durability, reliability and ultimately—performance. This positioning also helped build upon Metl-Span’s heritage and set it apart from key competitors.
  3. Before the new positioning could be rolled out, Metl-Span needed to ensure internal alignment. Bailey developed key materials to facilitate this process, including the brand summary, messaging platform, and internal presentations that could be shared with employees in every corner of the company.

What happened next

Bailey and Metl-Span rolled out the new positioning across every facet of the organization, strengthening its presence at industry events and developing sales and marketing materials, traditional and digital advertising, product catalogs and additional content and collateral—all laddering up to the new positioning of “Performance redefined.”