As we know, nonprofit organizations are mission-driven, and generally working with limited budgets, staffing, and time—putting their money and focus into making change. For these reasons and more, traditionally, branding and design have been pretty low on the list of priorities. The question is, should they be?
Consumer-facing brands work incredibly hard to stand out amongst their competition by building brands that are one-of-a-kind. They focus on being consistent at every consumer touchpoint which builds trust and recognition. And they invest in building loyalty through ongoing, engaging content and careful attention to all of their supporting materials—making sure everything always ties back to their core identity. So, when Bat Conservation International (BCI) came to us for a brand refresh we applied the same logic.
Bat Conservation International is an organization of expert conservationists and scientists — leading the charge to ensure the worldwide survival of bats. Nonprofits, particularly those in the conservation space, have the challenge of standing out among competitors vying for attention. So, we worked with BCI to build the same kind of customer loyalty that a consumer brand might have but in a way that doesn’t distract or disconnect from their core mission.
Convincing consumers to support a movement to save bats is difficult, because bats are typically portrayed as villainous and dangerous creatures in popular media. In reality, these extraordinary mammals provide vital ecosystem services such as pest control, pollination, and seed dispersal. So, how do you make saving bats look cool, while also stressing the very serious nature of the mission?
Through consistent messaging and standout creative, we revealed BCI’s smart, rebellious spirit by speaking confidently and directly — inspiring people to join a movement for profound change. The brand’s refreshed color palette mixes teals and violets with vibrant corals and bold usage of black and grey, giving the brand an optimistic and confident look and feel. The revitalized website brings it all together by integrating educational resources with captivating bat imagery, and videos of fearless conservationists and scientists in the field. We also developed a comprehensive brand guide to unify all communications and ensure that the BCI brand was represented consistently—everywhere.
Since the refreshed brand launched, BCI has seen an increase in the number of people inspired to connect, take action, and give to support bat conservation. In addition, BRIGADE’s work on the brand refresh was recently recognized for its creativity and originality—taking home the Gold from the Indigo Design Awards.
Across the globe, nonprofits such as BCI are heroically working behind the scenes to fight battles that aren’t on the radar of the average consumer. However a brand refresh can move a nonprofit into the day-to-day sphere of consumer attention—more eyes, more love, more change. Today, we’re living in a world that needs nonprofits to succeed and thrive. The heroes behind the scenes, along with the people, animals, and resources they’re trying to protect, deserve consistent and unique brand identities that do their mission justice at every single touchpoint.