Every year the Texas Parks & Wildlife Foundation (TPWF) hosts an event to honor and induct some of its biggest friends and supporters to the Conservation Hall of Fame. The event is one of the most prestigious conservation award dinners, attracting partners, ambassadors and donors from across the state to benefit the TPWF and amplify its mission.
The 2019 inductees strongly believe in the responsibility every Texan has to maintain our land and the life on it. The primary theme for the event focused on connection, more specifically on the flora and fauna that grow wildly across the Lone Star state, each native species playing a vital role in our ecosystem. To raise awareness and excite attendees, we set out to design an invitation suite befitting Texas’ most precious resource—all the wild things and wild places that make our state great.
The state of Texas is not only vast. It’s diverse. From the panhandle to the pines, every inch is famed for its beauty and defined by the iconic landscapes. And there’s no better way to appreciate those views than from the open road.
Seeking to capture that feeling of nostalgia for long drives and wide-open spaces, we built a conceptual theme centered around the classic American road-trip—Texas-style. A limited-edition postcard series served as the invitation, each featuring a hand-drawn illustration of true Texas moments from five distinct regions.
The event helped raise private dollars for public funding. And the invite provided guests with a tangible piece of Texas they could collect or share with others to inspire conservation. A tribute to the landscape and a call to experience the wild, Texas Road Trip won awards at the local and regional American Advertising Awards in 2019.
The Gary Patterson Foundation raises thousands of dollars every year to benefit various education and children related entities. After experiencing Mack, Jack & McConaughey in Austin, the Gary Patterson Foundation was inspired by MCM’s efforts to empower kids through 2-days of fundraising and fun. After careful consideration, they decided to shift their traditional Joe T’s annual event into a weekend filled with fundraising activities from golf to galas. With a shift as big as this, they needed to create an impactful brand.
Develop brand name, narrative and messaging for the non-profit event series
Create a dynamic brand identity system that communicates the values of the non-profit
Finding the Way
We worked closely with the Gary Patterson and his team to better understand the audience and impact of the new events, and create a strategy that would speak to their target audience. The events needed to attract all generations of donors in North Texas, and be accessible to those that would like to donate for the first time. The new initiative also needed to be the core fundraising event for the Gary Patterson Foundation. So, we had to position it as an accessible, diverse non-profit open to those that aren’t passionate about sports, but also welcome those that are – it had to be inclusive and suitable for a diversity of mediums. From black ties to tailgates, the mark needed to be flexible enough to feel at home at any type of fundraising event.
Plenty of Good to Go Around
To communicate the breadth and impact of the fundraising efforts, we knew the brand and mark had to be big. With an emphasis on the good.
The organization landed on the name, “The Big Good,” which is direct, yet powerful. Its strength is in its simplicity. A quick read with enough flexibility to cover more than one specific event or fundraiser. The Big Good indicates the diversity of events and their monumental impact on North Texas families and beyond.
The typographic logo is purposefully simple to communicate the variety of events at the heart of the Big Good. Each of the letterforms is customized and unique which further emphasizes the diverse structure of the Big Good. The crossbars on the “H/E/B/G” are all different and intentionally illustrate the fun and engaging nature of the events that offer something substantial for everybody, and specific need in Dallas Fort Worth.
A subtly simple mark, paired with a direct brand name can make an impactful and memorable impression. The Big Good branding illustrates the power of using simplicity to communicate and represent a brand.
M. Kangerga & Bro Management (MKB) is a commercial real estate investment company that focuses on self-storage opportunities. The family-owned business has been around for more than 100 years—historic, yet brandless in their industry. To strike the right note, Schaefer partnered with MKB to develop their brand identity and expand brand visibility and credibility as the company sought investment partners.
The purpose of the MKB rebrand was to modernize the brand tone and visual aesthetics to not just live on, but inspire confidence and empower decisions among investors and new business leads. As the company expanded relationships with third-party investors, they needed a brand identity that leveraged their heritage into an authentic look with a very updated, polished feeling.
Capture history and legacy in new brand identity
Create a presence online to establish credibility and appeal to new investors
Create new marketing materials for investor pitches
A Nod to the Past, Present and Future
Stylistically, we wanted the new creative platform to pull through the heritage of the brand, but not feel old. We created a mark that nods to MKB’s roots, but also reflects where they are right now and where their company is heading. The primary logo has a quiet confidence, and the typeface’s nuanced letterforms illustrates the imperfections – but staying power – of carving into stone, which is a nod to the company’s impressive history.
The typography we chose is based on Jandus, which leverages strong architectural characters, friendly rounded corners and classic simplicity that can stand the test of time, just like MKB.
We selected a minimal color palette of dark charcoal and muted gold and cream, which represent the history and tradition that serve as the very foundation for MKB’s success, while also indicating their steadfastness and lasting nature. These colors work together to communicate that MKB is a trusted leader in commercial property investment and that their long history is full of decades of success.
Cohesive brand development
Logo recommendations and
Color palette, font solutions
Complementary stylistic assets
Narrative + messaging
When branding a company, it’s important to thoroughly understand the company’s principles and how they want to be known in the hearts and minds of their prospects. For MKB, we created a comprehensive brand identity that captures the history of over 100 years of successful business ventures and indicates that the brand will be around for many more fruitful years to come.
The Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce has served the business community within the Fort Worth area since the late 1800s, playing a pivotal role in nearly every major milestone that has occurred in the city. Moving into 2020, the Chamber’s CEO of over 30 years retired, opening the door for a new, visionary leadership team to continue the Chamber’s momentum in driving forward the success and growth of Fort Worth business.
The emerging Chamber team developed a specific vision and strategic plan to capture and sustain growth for the City of Fort Worth, serving as both the champion for existing businesses while executing aggressive economic development efforts. Critical to the success of this plan was to reintroduce the Chamber to our business community, influencers, and new prospects in a manner that would enlighten them to the value of the city and engage them with the Chamber. To accomplish this successfully, the Chamber team partnered with Schaefer Advertising to refine the communications platform and brand identity.
Each of our brand initiatives begins with a critical analysis of an organization’s strengths, weaknesses, and differentiators. We immerse ourselves in the vision of the company, including all marketing and business objectives. With the FW Chamber, we identified the opportunity to capitalize on the legacy of the organization while creating a more defined and contemporary position that was current with today’s business climate. Through the development of a Brand Archetype, coupled with a defined brand position and targeted key messages, we created a communications platform that the Chamber can use in their marketing efforts moving forward. This platform also fully informed the creative development of a new brand identity.
A Heroic New Mark
Our exploration process revealed that the Chamber was defined as a Hero archetype, a persona defined by strength, courage, commitment, and a drive to move things forward. Taking direction from that archetype, our creative team explored a multitude of solutions for the new Chamber brand. In keeping with our process of immersion, the team explored other related and competitive organizational brands, the history of Fort Worth, and the Chamber to inspire the recommended design solutions.
The resulting mark is simple, bold, and includes a star as a subtle nod to a boot spur and a connection to the prior iteration of their logo. The new identity evolves their brand to better represent the community it serves and the institutions it champions.
When it comes to oncology, medicine has advanced in big ways. But the business side of running an oncology practice hasn’t kept up. In the age of automation, back-office operations are often tedious, siloed and completed manually. Factors that contribute to misused resources and the growing cost of cancer care. That’s where AC3 comes in.
AC3 is a practice intelligence platform that harnesses the power of data to improve the quality and speed of back-office work. Allowing doctors and staff to trade paperwork and process for a more meaningful purpose—caring for patients. With care being core to their business, the real obstacle was creating an identity that lived up to AC3’s cutting-edge capabilities as well as their impact on patient care.
Bringing Care Into Focus
Cancer is humbling and, most importantly, human. So the branding had to communicate the function of a tech-driven product in a very human way. In addition to a visual identity, AC3 needed a way to talk about themselves to a more public audience. We developed positioning that helped define who they are. And rooted it in the real-world, analog benefits doctors and patients experience. Productivity, revenue, quality of care, this platform gives doctors the ability to do more. A lot more.
For the mark, we took a nod from the company’s namesake—Advanced Cancer Care Centers—and aligned it with the platform’s ability to improve operations within a practice exponentially. We let positioning guide design and the result was meaningful.
With any tech-based product, there’s a concern around sharing proprietary imagery—a challenge we faced when representing the product in a tangible way. Rather than showing the software itself, we focused on the moments AC3 makes possible.
When we took ownership of Lilyana marketing, the community needed a brand that better connected homebuyers to the true joys of living in this community.
Honing in on Key Differentiators
This community is far from cookie-cutter, so it only made sense to highlight the factors that make it stand out in a cluttered and crowded market. For Lilyana, it’s the conveniences and lifestyle that make it a truly special place to call home. With more than 50-acres of green space, the community is packed with natural amenities, numerous parks and things for homeowners to do outdoors. All of which keep the community and people connected.
A Refocused Brand Position
Lilyana is located in Celina, a peaceful, up-and-coming town remote enough to harbor tranquility and close enough to Frisco to take advantage of its entertainment, energy and everything it has to offer. When we began to evolve the brand position, we pulled the thread of accessible tranquility to show prospective homebuyers that it is possible to have it all when you live at Lilyana.
Communicating Joy and Tranquility
We needed a way to portray the very real, and often intangible, qualities that make this community so special. By incorporating bubbles as a visual element, we were able to communicate the true value of a Hillwood community—connection, comfort and an ethos rooted in community. All while positioning Lilyana as a place to pause and enjoy the moment.
In addition to visually refreshing the brand, we also revitalized the brand language to communicate joy in the Lilyana lifestyle. “A place to embrace life’s moments” communicates that Lilyana is a community for people to slow down and enjoy their lives – right here, right now.
Building a comprehensive brand story gives real estate brands more space to have meaningful conversations with home buyers. Developing Lilyana’s position in a cluttered and competitive space helped the brand stand out, and ultimately led to more home sales.
Places are defined by people, and the Near Southside is among the most vibrant and diverse communities in Fort Worth. So, when they approached Schaefer to help them rebrand their identity, we focused on the neighborhood they create and the people and ideas the Near Southside attracts.
We wanted to present that the Near Southside is first and foremost a community where people and business can thrive in an inclusive and supportive environment. The result is a design balanced in minimalism and boldness that allows the artistic soul of the Near Southside to come through, but also be functional enough to carry the brand across everything from way-finding signage to social. The new color pallet represents the diverse voices that stand up for and continue to create opportunities that cultivate community. The updated identity is malleable enough to work across mediums but enduring enough to be used over decades to come.
It is a pleasure to partner with local organizations that build up our community and help them identify their message and purpose, and carry that through to representing their brand. By creating a flexible mark that more accurately represents the community and culture of the Near Southside, we’re hopeful that their message will resonate more deeply with future community members and contributors. The Near Southside is an excellent ambassador and cultivator of the arts and culture that permeate our neighborhood and creating something that elicits that same level of passion is why we come to work every single day.
Building a brand from the ground up is an exciting opportunity and challenge for our team. In this case, the branding needed to reflect the ground, the air, and the ether. The Medical Innovation District (MID) in Fort Worth started out as a disconnected/amorphous physical footprint, an energetic entrepreneurial community, a rich density of medical professionals and patients, and a vision for the future. Altogether, Medical Innovation District was a vision of possibility, so, when they called Schaefer to help name and brand the organization, we entered into an intense discovery process to help clearly communicate the purpose of this local innovation hub. But, can you build a brand from a vision and a mindset?
Generate awareness for Fort Worth’s Medical Innovation District by highlighting differentiation and a cohesive identity and opportunity in Fort Worth
Name, brand and launch district to cultivate direct conversations with key targets and attract them to Fort Worth
From the outset, we wanted to find a path that spoke to entrepreneurs and innovative brands, striking the right balance to attract established healthcare companies and industry disruptors alike. We began strategizing the branding and positioning for MID by holding in-depth interviews with the internal stakeholders of the organization and community. We also wanted to incorporate the proximity to a dense healthcare employment cluster as a benefit of the location, which helps nurture local collaboration. Establishing the MID as a place where people collaborate and innovate solutions was critical to the final branding and positioning.
Refining the Brand Name to Reflect Purpose
When approaching any brand identity, it’s important to carefully listen to the client so that their industry-specific knowledge is pulled through to the final product. For the Medical Innovation District, that meant refining their purpose and clearly communicating it with a unique name. Specifically, the client wanted to get away from the term “Innovation,” which is oversaturated in the marketplace and does not illustrate the process behind innovation, which is the result of constant iteration. So, we looked at the core of innovation and saw a path to an answer: iteration, which is the process of constant improvement and at the heart of innovation.
We chose iter8 as the new brand name for MID. iter8 directly reflects the process by which ground-breaking ideas are created: through constant testing, fine-tuning and evolution. Furthermore, the name more accurately communicates the purpose of iter8’s position in the market and community.
Marrying Entrepreneurship and Healthcare
When we beganbranding the MID, we wanted to focus on bringing to the foreground the opportunity for entrepreneurial development to attract healthcare anchors, which are at the center of medical innovation. Positioning iter8 in Fort Worth as a place to pioneer new ideas in healthcare is a natural fit because Fort Worth is a place that pushes the boundaries of what is possible and creates new doors to open. At the heart of Fort Worth and iter8 is a maverick’s spirit, so we positioned iter8 as a brand that creates new frontiers in the healthcare landscape by fostering innovative ideas powered by community and collaboration.
Unique and ownable name and identity
New launch advertising materials and website to centralize contact with key targets
Make Life Better
You can build a brand from a clear vision of the future and an innovative mindset. For iter8, that mindset will enrich the community of Fort Worth for generations to come. Fort Worth is our home, and it is rewarding to work for a client that helps position the city as a leader in local innovation and drive creative and scientific thought leaders to our great city.
Connecting with the right target audience is crucial to marketing success. Bluewood is a Hillwood community filled with possibilities. Known for its unique ability to balance comfort and adventure, Bluewood wanted to attract a new wave of home buyers entering the market by crafting a campaign message that rang true to its target buyer and its inspiration. So, we evolved their existing messaging to create a new campaign that attracted young, vibrant shoppers, and cemented the Bluewood brand as a community without compromise. When we set out to create updated messaging, we aimed for something that reinforced the brand’s positioning and communicated the energy of Celina and the personality and vision of the community. Celina is a city that is rapidly growing and offers new residents fantastic potential as an up-and-coming community.
We landed on “Meet the Community as Bright and Bold as You Are,” intentionally focusing our position around the experience, to better paint a picture of the lifestyle Bluewood promises. The message immediately identifies with the younger homebuyer looking to buy a home in an up-and-coming community that just happens to be situated in one of Texas’ fastest-growing cities. It nods to a growing community emboldened by the people who live there. The updated message reflects the optimism of the area, the community and our target audience to position itself right alongside this exciting stage of life – bright and bold.
River & Blues Fest is a new kind of music festival, featuring a uniquely American lineup of longtime favorites and soulful up-and-comers in country and blues. Launching its inaugural year right here in the heart of Fort Worth, the River & Blues Festival needed a dynamic identity system to engage and attract music lovers and artists alike across a primarily digital landscape.
Launching a New Identity System
Drawing inspiration from the rhythm and the river, we turned up the volume on the ethos and the experience to allow the vision of the festival to come through. The result was a scalable brand identity that represented the heart and soul of the music itself—a perfect balance of grit and a good time. With so many moving pieces, it was important to create a system that easily blended photography, motion and print elements, but most importantly position this instantly legendary weekend as one that can’t be missed.
Connecting with Our Target Audience
Launching any new brand can be a challenge and making noise about a music festival can be especially challenging in Texas. But, a clearly defined vision and a true one-of-a-kind blend of country and blues music is a fantastic experience to position. To connect with a wide audience, we needed to communicate that the River & Blues Festival is not just a blues festival, but also a country music festival, which appeals to a wide range of local music fans spanning demographics. Furthermore, we wanted to bring the river through in our messaging and identity to illustrate that the festival takes place on the Trinity River at Panther Island Pavilion in the heart of Fort Worth.
Concert Going amid Covid-19
“The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that anything can happen. But, what no one accounted for, or could have foreseen, was the covid-19 pandemic. River & Blues Fest was meant to make its first-ever debut during the summer festival season. As it turns out, that fell right during the height of the coronavirus lockdowns. Like other big-name events, we had to shift from a traditionally communal live music experience to a socially-distant, socially-conscious festival. Which meant more than a new date to ensure the people attending, playing and working not only felt safe but participated responsibly. In addition to new precautions we needed to communicate that, while the experience might look different, the music still sounds the same. And after all this time apart, maybe sweeter.
Brought a new brand to market and established their brand foundation
Created a flexible brand identity system
Built a new website aimed at ticket sales conversions
Partnered with artists to cross-promote on social and traditional radio
Total digital campaign resulted in more than 150,000 impressions and an above-average CTR
Built an email database from no subscribers to just over 1,500
Make Life Better
Artists and the people who support them rely on gigs and performances to make a living. River & Blues Fest is, without a doubt, going to be a good time. But it’s also going to prop up an art form, a nearly forgotten genre that survives with every chord. More so, it supports the artists, especially the grassroots, independent and often local musicians still waiting to be discovered. We are so proud to work with a client that uplifts the local creative community and is flexible enough to adjust their brand-new music festival to be safe and socially distant. Bringing people together safely is important now more than ever.