Mark my words

Having just barely survived phase 1 of our “Logo Lift” here at Beaconfire, I have only one thing to say: Ouch.

I won’t even fake naïveté here because I knew deep down it would be harder than expected. I’ve had the front row seat to many a client rebranding train wreck before, but I’ve always played the role of supportive consultant. The “expert” voice. The one saying “Good God, how hard can it be to design a great logo? Tell your agency to get on with it already!”

Yeah. Karma’s a bitch.

For those uninitiated, the process of designing a logo usually includes the creation of a unique “mark” or graphic treatment paired with an appropriate font/type. Together, these should represent, at a single glance, your company’s mission, vision, methodology and style. While settling upon a new font choice was tricky, we managed to relatively quickly agree to one we all loved. However I totally underestimated how complex, terrifying and fraught with peril the search for a revised mark would be. My blood pressure reached new highs when we spent 2 weeks without any clue how to integrate the mark. Visions of blank business cards and logo-less postcards swam in front of my eyes. My job, I was certain, hung in the balance. No doubt about it, I was in full-on panic.

In my defense, since we weren’t totally rebranding but rather hoping to “update” our existing logo (both mark and type), I thought it would somehow be easier. Don’t know what I was smoking. Lesson of the year: Creating something “new” that retains the brand equity of the “old” yet still feels like “us” is not unlike juggling. Blindfolded. On crutches. With flaming chainsaws.

All challenges aside, I can proudly report we will not be going barefoot as originally feared, and that we now have a shiny “new” logo that we are very very proud of.

But just to keep you all guessing, the actual logo is embargoed until the official reveal at our 10th anniversary celebration in March – Patience is a virtue my friends (or at least that’s what I’m told). However, I can share some of logos (out of the nearly 100 versions created) that we didn’t choose just to whet your appetite for the real thing in the spring.

After all of this, I can honestly say that I have a far greater appreciation of what our clients go through during this often painstaking & frustrating process. So next time I don’t offer you a glass of wine or a valium before addressing your branding needs, just smack me. You’re all remarkably brave souls.

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