Headquartered in California, Golden Bear Physical Therapy is a fast-growing network of physical therapy clinics. Starting as a small regional provider, Golden Bear has worked hard to maintain their sense of community and patient focus even as they have grown exponentially. Today, they have more than 50 clinics and 500 employees across 3 states.

Fragmented Brand Driven By Growth


Team Members


The Challenge:

Growing Brand, Lack of Focus

Supported by investors, Golden Bear Physical Therapy was growing rapidly and quickly enrolling clinics into their network of providers nationwide. With each new clinic came increasing demand for a functional, effective web presence that showcased their providers and their brand values. Yet executive leadership felt they lacked a cohesive strategy for how to set their company apart in a busy and competitive marketplace, as well as juggle a variety of different sub-brands within their network. We stepped in to provide strategic and creative direction to this effort.

The Solution:

An Emphasis on Community

Golden Bear began with a focus on providing high-quality physical therapy care to communities across central California. Their current executive leadership hails from that same hands-on physical therapy background, bringing a sense of camaraderie and perspective to the business. This helps the brand stay rooted in the everyday values that help patients thrive and recover.

We wanted to connect the brand back to those central values. One of the biggest challenges was that Golden Bear was not just expanding under their own brand name, but was welcoming allied brands under their umbrella. This meant that it wasn’t possible to create a single brand identity for every clinic in their network.

To provide some structure to their brand architecture, we took a step back and examined the way Golden Bear leadership talked about their work. We noticed that the leadership team used words like “community,” “commitment,” and “family” to describe the importance of their work. It was only natural, then, that their brand identity should incorporate those elements.

Even as they grew, the Golden Bear team strived to maintain the family-like atmosphere that had set them apart from other clinics. We decided to highlight that commitment and make the concept of “family” the central focus of our brand architecture.

We decided to highlight their community commitment and make the concept of “family” the central focus of our brand architecture.

As a result, Golden Bear would now “treat patients like family” and welcome new clinics into their “family of brands.” Visuals, messaging, and design would all echo this theme of warmth, acceptance, and generosity that stemmed from this key insight.

The CREATIVE: Multiple Brands, Single Touchpoint

Through multiple phases, we helped Golden Bear develop a cohesive brand that welcomed new patients, acquisitions, and staff to a family-oriented environment. Among the phases we spearheaded included:

Brand Architecture

We led the Golden Bear executive team through several rounds of messaging and brand architecture to find a unifying message that resonated with their growing clinic network. After selecting a focus on family and community, we were better able to infuse the creative with the brand’s core values. This exercise also allowed us to develop a brand architecture that was robust enough to adapt to a growing number of clinics around the country without feeling diluted or ineffective.

Visual Branding

From there, we developed visual branding that included a central color scheme, bold and easy-to-understand iconography, and clean, uncluttered design. That branding then shaped the preliminary design for a central Golden Bear website which would showcase their clinic network. We selected a color palette based around the existing Golden Bear logo, connecting the brand’s new visual identity to its long history serving communities across the state of California.


Website Design and Development

Working closely with the business development team, we then created additional site content that could be used for outreach to clinics interested in joining their network. This meant creating a version of the Golden Bear site that spoke not only to potential patients but also to clinic owners interested in selling their business. Throughout this process, we were able to maintain a focus on the brand’s core values while speaking to two disparate audiences. For patients, we created a consumer-friendly face that spoke to the clinical excellence at Golden Bear. For potential partners, we created a detailed and action-oriented overview of selling their practice to the Golden Bear network.

Finally, we developed the site to be fully responsive and usable across devices, then launched prior to a major executive leadership conference.


The structure of the Cardwell Beach team is built on the customer first. So if the client is working at 2 in the afternoon or 2 in the morning, they’re prepared to help.

Jeremy Neisser

Director of Integrated Marketing.