After nearly 9 years we have decided to take our old logo down off the shelf and replace it with a new and shiny one. This was not an easy decision because our logo is near and dear to us. It has stood us through good and bad. It never judged us when we went off and opened clubs, sold t-shirts or rented a wheelbarrow for R10 000 (true story). Our logo has been with us from day 1. So we needed a really good reason to rebrand.
What in our humble opinion are the really good reasons for a company to rebrand? We think there are only a select few, the rest are more influenced by vanity. In no particular order they are:
- You have something new to say
- You need to distance yourself from a bad reputation
- There has been a change of ownership
- Your brand does not fit your product mix anymore
- You need to be more distinctive
- You started with a really crappy brand
We have moved into the space where we have something new to say, we have evolved over the last 9 years. Our original focus was on design and animation. Over time, we have become more and more interested in delivering actual impact with our work. One of the big things holding us back was getting our executions in line with the strategy (or in most cases, the lack thereof) of our clients. We were often not being used for the most important or high impact executions. We came to the realisation that execution was not enough anymore. We have grown more and more into helping our clients sort out the underlying problems in their communications. Often that involves figuring out who we are speaking to and what their pain points are. So the long and short of this is that our brand no longer suited the message we want to put out. After a process of evaluation our vision, mission and values we have realigned our focus and found a new logo and positioning to communicate that (drum roll please):
The next step was to look at what we wanted to retain from the old brand. We wanted to keep our playful tone, the to quote one of our clients ‘interesting’ images in our image bank. and we wanted to distill the old logo /\/\/\/ down to its very essence and ended up with the new Nicework / (We gave it a very fancy name “slash”).
In this mobile and internet age what we wanted was an identity that was unique and flexible. We wanted to open ourselves up to a world of different executions across a variety of platforms. So we paired the / with a clean modern font “Founders Grotesk” a grotesque sans-serif typeface designed by Kris Sowersby of the New Zealand-based Klim Type Foundry. We did some customisation of the letter “R” to match our / and give us a personalised typeset that is ours to own and love.
Where would we be without a killer logo animation? This is also part of our new Showreel.
Our next step was to take this simple logo mark that we had created and fill it with all the fun, personality and passion we approach our work with. We let the team loose on what colours they thought encapsulated them as a person. We also explored what the potential of the Nicework /. We see it as a window to all the potential that our creativity and design solution can offer. In terms of colours, we are normally very strictly bound by what colours we can and can’t use. So we have opened up our brand to experimentation with colour and colour combinations.
The final step was to give over ownership to our staff. We have built in a level of customisation for each of our team with their own imagery, colours and a personalised message on each card. We think this is important because each designer adds a piece of their personality to the work they generate out of the studio. The accumulation of these little elements of personality has shaped and defined the work Nicework is known for. We wanted the new identity to encapsulate this in a small way. We are also able to mimic the colours of our clients so our brand can seamlessly partner with theirs. We wanted to infuse our new messages with some of the Nicework quirk and fun.
The end result of all of this is a brand we are really proud to fill with meaning and purpose over the next 9 years of Nicework. To all our clients and friends, thanks for coming along for the ride with us.