With access to thousands of visual impressions a day, there seems to be much confusion in the business world.
New clients for whom we’re creating logo/identity/messaging/branding for have a common mantra, “We want our logo to look like so and so’s and our website to look like so and so’s and our graphics to look like so and so’s, and our photos…” You get the picture. They’re having an identity crisis.
Then we ask, “So, who are YOU?” There’s generally a very clear answer, but one that doesn’t remotely relate to what they think their company’s outward facing persona should be. After explaining that those alter-identities and brands are not them, the fun work begins in uncovering their true identity by homing in on what they are all about, and how they can best make a connection with their audience and clients.
Sure, we’re all influenced by the ever changing visuals we encounter – and it’s cool to be inspired and impossible not to be. But the best thing a business can do is to be true to itself and have the courage to reveal its own identity. That’s how to connect with your real audience.
Learn more about Secret Valley Media Labs.
Photo, Robin Cox.
Not far into the development of iKoss Consulting’s new website design, it became apparent we needed to sit down with the client and listen to their story. Not only the obvious story of the direction and growth of their business, but those little gems of insight that are revealed through casual conversation. And we couldn’t wait to sit down and chat.
iKoss Consulting has been a client of ours since 2002 when we first developed their logo and first website. We’ve kept in touch with Blair and Jen Koss over the years and have always admired their ability to stay focused on a goal and achieve what they set out to accomplish. Plus, they’re intelligent, interesting and a lot of fun to be with.
After an afternoon filled with stories and laughs it became obvious we had to tell their story through their people, with Blair and Jen front and center. The consultants at first were a little hesitant to be subjects of a photo shoot, but after a glass of good Pinot they were fine. As we continued to shoot throughout the day, the group’s camaraderie and love for what they do was reflected in the camera lens.
Since the one requirement in building the site was to do so within the Microsoft 365 environment, which is very restrictive and makes most designers cringe, the images became the driving force of the site and social media channels.
Without taking the time to just sit back and listen to the client, we wouldn’t have learned that iKoss is people – people who work hard as a team to guide their clients through change.
To see the team in action check out ikoss.com
Last night a few of us from SVML went to the Todd Rundgren concert. He looked and sounded great, the band was tight and energetic and the crowd was having a good time. We had a blast.
What really hit me was the evidence of Buffalo’s ongoing renaissance. Its once defunct waterfront looked alive and inviting. Historic buildings have been renovated and the fusion of old and new architectural elements is successful. The beautiful old cobblestone roads have been restored and new walkways and roads have been built where necessary. Brightly colored Adirondack chairs dot the green grassy park area. The sleek sailboats and colorful kayaks filled the river entrance to Lake Erie. And the bright flags emblazoned with the Canalside logo (which is nice) fluttered in the lake breeze.
Seeing all those elements come together as a fresh Canalside brand made it exciting to be there. You felt like you were someplace special, as though someone (or a lot of someones) cared enough to invest the time and money into creating a new identity and brand. If they cared enough to put forth this effort, then it must be worthy of taking part in. That’s the importance of a strong, well thought out identity. When it looks good it feels important. And that makes people feel good. When you make them feel good, they remember.