One of the things I love best about McBru is that it is constantly evolving, which means I get to keep learning and growing. The past few years have been no exception. Some of the change was planned, such as more focus on social media and content strategy services. Some of it was opportunistic through rapid growth in fundamental services like video and event management programs.
With all the change and evolution, it seemed timely last summer to revisit our own corporate brand. To that end, McBru underwent one of our well-honed Brand Identity workshops (yes, Virginia, the cobbler’s children do have shoes). Over a few hours, the executive team reviewed the agency’s vision, mission and desired brand position. The combined effort took form in a brand identity document with four sections:
- Cultural drivers: the behaviors rewarded within the agency
- Brand association: the top attribute we want associated with the agency
- Promise of value: a short statement of what we deliver that other agencies don’t
- Personality: the traits that inform all our communications in the market
With this foundation, we turned to business partners and friends to give us a frank assessment of our existing brand. How well did it live up to our new brand identity? We all sat down together to hash out what part of the brand should remain intact, and where we should focus our efforts in refreshing the brand.
For example, the conversational, insider tone of our copy seemed to be a good fit. We decided to maintain that as we moved forward. The existing brand used “non-corporate” colors to express our creativity: we decided to continue that direction, but seek a new palette that stressed innovation and leadership as well. The name McClenahan Bruer, and the nickname McBru, both had brand equity in our markets, but the word “Communications” was quite long and possibly misleading. The logomark, moreover, was seen as ambiguous. It combined two circles that could be seen as merging or diverging, and one circle had a tiny “c” that could be interpreted in multiple ways. The agency decided to drop Communications and craft a more focused and bolder mark.
During the fall of 2012, McBru’s creative group buckled down to develop the new logo, color scheme, guidelines and messaging. At the center of the new design is the new logomark: a single circle with a bold “M” inside, placed to the right to embody a sense of depth and motion. The new color palette is built around the strong, unexpected “technoviolet” color, accompanied by a warm grey and a warm black, and supported by two rich primary colors: McBlue and Orange. The driving aesthetic is clean, open, simple design – sophisticated as well as easy to consume and understand.
We’re excited and energized by our new visual identity and new website. We hope you’ll take some time to explore it, and give us your feedback. And, look for a post here soon from our director of sales and marketing, who will dive a little deeper into our new brand, new website and more.