By Crystal Wilson
April and I are doers, not wait until all the ducks are in a row and then get going-ers.
When we started Flow, we started with an idea. Not a business idea - a change idea. We wanted to change the landscape of how a business can impact and interact with the community around it. We knew this idea would take shape as we let it.
When Flow started 3 years ago we had very few things nailed down, but we did have a solid set of values and an idea.
We have changed throughout these past three years into a team that is recognized in our community as an ethical, results driven business. The group of people we have identified as ideal clients has changed drastically. Initially we were drawn to and requested by solo-preneurs who needed to get organized or promote their businesses, small startups who needed to have services provided without the commitment required to bring on staff internally.
Then and Now with Flow
Then: Frazzled overworked solopreneurs and small business owners
Now: Established, values oriented SMEs, B Corps and NFPs
Then: Relatively loosely defined as “administrative services” running the gamut from corporate gifting, to bookkeeping, to promotion plans
Now: Neatly outlined as; Bookkeeping and Finance, Executive Administration and Project Management, Event Planning and Fundraising, Websites and Graphic Design, and Marketing and Communications.
Then: Struggling to find an organization who could effectively partner with us.
Now: The Hunger Project Canada, Madagascar School Project, Chalmers Community Services Centre
To reflect this maturation of our company we thought it was time to also put our visual brand through a metamorphosis of it’s own. Thanks to the Rhyze Project we were awarded a logo design package courtesy of Snow Conrad and we began work.
Our original logo was a very gentle, feminine, flowy butterfly. We liked the butterfly for its nod to transformation. It spoke to us about our intention to transform the standards of how business is done.
After time we ended up believing that the butterfly was too much on the feminine side, and in order to attract our target market (in some male driven industries) we thought we should move beyond it. We had already identified the colours that we wanted to use, based on preference and a desire for solid, bold presentation and Snow went to work.
We went through two rounds of designs which focussed on ideas related to ripples, flowing lines, and innovation representations. Many were quite striking, but confused the visual brand. So, our brave and persistent designer went out on a limb and presented us with exactly what we asked her not to - a butterfly. Except that it was also a windmill, a bee, curled pages, water droplets…
This appealed to the persistent problem we have had with representing what we do. It looks so different from client to client, and this logo illustrates that. Aside from this new logo showing up different ways to different people, it it also solid and bold - a far cry from the wispy logo that previously represented us. It’s shape, combined with the deep, opaque colours of the branding make a very important statement about what we now know.
We are here on purpose. We are confident and outspoken. You are going to notice us.