I am writing this to address the outrage and negative feedback from the community, regarding the new City of Barrie's rebrand. Don’t worry, Barrie community… I fully agree.
So you know that I am not making an uneducated attack, I am Thain. I own Thain Creative (www.thaincreative.com) - a small studio that has been building brands in Barrie for over a decade. I have studied at the Art Institute in York and graduated with a degree in digital design. I graduated with honours, at the top of my class, and was named to the Who’s Who. However, more importantly than my credentials, is the large body of work and experience I have developed over the years - developing thousands of logos in our studio for a variety of clients. The most important thing I’ve discovered is that a logo or brand should reach their audience and communicate the exact message that was intended for the business or organization, as well as reflect the qualities and values they stand for.
The new logo does not communicate well or reach the community of which it is targeting. But rather than just harshing on it, I am going to point out where they went wrong.
First off, with any kind of project where a large community is involved, it requires a due diligence process to justify the final decision. The community should have been involved in the selection process and given the opportunity to put forward their ideas and intelligent solutions. Community feedback and forward thinking ideas would have assisted the development of a logo that communicates the true essence of Barrie. Afterward, a final logo should have been publicly chosen as a majority decision.
In the event of an in-house job, an outside consultant with experience in community logos and brands should have been hired to guide the process. If an independent business was used, there should have been a disclosure of this information, as well as a selection process for the business.
The due diligence process is the reason that not many are happy with the result. This is the process that helps to ground the logo in the community and work out the kinks in the creative ideas and design. That being said, you will never be able to make everyone happy, but a majority decision is important when you are branding a community.
Through some research, you can find the source of the logo was not an in-house job and was done through an independent business, which should have been properly disclosed to the community. The attacks and the negative feedback that the community has had towards the new Barrie brand are founded and unfortunately, it all falls back to the process being handled poorly.
So why is everyone so outraged? Because we weren’t involved in the ideas, thoughts, creation, and selection of the logo that identifies our community. As someone who lives in that community, I too, feel cheated and misrepresented.
Not well played, Barrie. Not well connected. You had the chance to use the community and demonstrate the new slogan in action and you failed as badly as the new logo represents the city.