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Barkis + Co.

Carmel Rancho Shopping Center: Brand Identity

The Carmel Rancho Shopping Center needed a simple yet striking and effective brand identity to showcase the new energy being brought into the center. With a new coffee shop going in, renovations to the grounds and stores, new industries, and coming into the Summer Season, it was the perfect time to debut the new look. We’re eager to see this brand unfold across the center and look forward to its simple application options.

A major goal of this rebrand was to appeal to multiple demographics – from the existing patrons who have been shopping here for years, to the younger inflow of new college students, tourists, and other locals who have possibly overlooked CRSC in the past. We wanted to bring a fresh, bright look to the center to really showcase the changes happening here.

When branding a company that has other brands alongside it (i.e. this logo needs to coexist nicely alongside tenant logos), we try to make a brand as simple and clean as possible. This allows for easier printing, quicker turnaround on approvals for any associated brand materials (in this case, we’re discussing teal blue planters), and overall makes everyone’s life a little easier when transitioning a new brand. We also considered the application on signage, and feel this simple logomark with a clean typeface will be quick and easy to print, but also highly visible and recognizable from the highway. This should result in a more cohesive brand appearance, and will certainly enforce the changes that are happening at CRSC.

We are so excited to be working on a handful of projects within the Carmel Rancho Shopping Center, and are looking forward to providing our branding, creative consultation, web design & photography to continue bringing the businesses here (and new businesses) up to date with what the customers are looking to see! We hope to assist CRSC in positioning itself as a one of a kind shopping experience with new and exciting finds, daily. In the near future, the Carmel Rancho Shopping Center will prove to be a space everyone can come and shop, dine, relax, and enjoy!

 

Bud Light: Holiday Campaign

 

We were called very last minute by Bud Light, as another local agency in San Francisco had fallen through on this brief and they only had a day and a half to get this shoot coordinated, shot, and delivered. When working with big brands, often “simple” shoot concepts have many more rules and requirements that add up to a large time investment (and a slower turnaround) than you might expect. This was the case with Bud Light’s Holiday campaign when we worked on it. We had just 36 hours (give or take) to coordinate this entire shoot.

We managed to get in just under the wire, and created what they considered perfectly on brief.

Amazing, this is perfect. Thank you so much for getting these done so quickly, you’ve saved the day

Kari T. on behalf of Budweiser

Life happens, and we can’t always squeeze in a last minute brief, but in this case everything came together perfectly and we were so happy to have the opportunity to work with Bud Light.

SOLVD: Brand Identity

This is a company we are so excited about – SOLVD. Without going into too much detail until their launch within the next few weeks, we can share that the Monterey Bay area is getting a much needed stress reliever and time saver. SOLVD will solve endless problems, scheduling conflicts, assistance requirements and more than you could ever imagine.

This brand identity needed to work across so many markets, so many mediums, and would undoubtedly need to grow as time passes and the need for their services grows. This brand leverages a clean, simple, easy to read and identify logo mark with a unique dapper looking icon hidden within the V. By keeping a minimalist approach to the design, and simply utilizing sleek colors and textures to allow this brand to flourish on bags, mugs, and apparel, this brand identity will be universally recognizable, and synonymous with quality and ease.

The addition of the colorful icons and geometric shapes bring a bit of fun and whimsy to the brand elements, which helps convey the simplicity of the services, and will invoke happy emotions throughout the website, the print materials, and eventually the app. They can easily be removed for other mediums if required, and simplify the brand allowing for quicker and easier printing on our client’s behalf. They will also save on printing costs by utilizing a clean, simple brand identity. These are all elements we take into consideration when designing a brand identity.

 

Check back in a few weeks, we’ll be sharing the SOLVD website, and more about this amazing new company!

 

Coffee Bank: Brand Identity

It’s fair to say we love all the brands we create, however this one was special. Austin and Nicole are from the greater Seattle, Washington area and while they traveled the country in their earlier years together, spent an immense amount of time at various coffee shops. Prior to having a headquarters, coffee shops provided invaluable networking opportunities, somewhat reliable wifi, and inspiration to continue building their businesses. They always dreamed of the day they would get to work with a new coffee shop, an opportunity that (especially for a small town like Monterey) doesn’t come up very often.

When our clients approached us with their idea, they simply gave us their hopes and dreams, and entrusted our enthusiasm and wealth of knowledge about this particular industry to do the rest. This brand, along with everything else we’ve done and will continue to provide to this amazing company, became a true passion project for our agency.

The technical elements of the brand are actually quite simple. We needed a versatile and strong identity. The intention is to create such an icon in this area, the brand will be timeless and never require changing, only small updates to the associated elements. We knew the production cost for all the branded materials were going to be substantial, so to save on costs where we could (so they could be added back into the overall construction of the coffee shop itself!) so to keep the production easier and more cost effective, we opted to bring in the iconic brown kraft paper color (and texture) as it is a print standard and will save them thousands over the years, but will maintain efficiency by having a basic item be almost immediately on brand-message. The little elements like this are what we strive to bring into every identity we create, ensuring your business is armed with a thoroughly thought out, long term identity.

The goal of this brand was to be universally approachable. We removed the “the” from the name as it’s far stronger without it. We further minimized the print costs and color-matching hassles by creating outline icons in a monochrome colorscheme as the only related elements (aside from photography as far as marketing/digital production is concerned).

The Coffee Bank, which is set to open this summer in Carmel, has an amazing story. One that you’ll have to wait to hear about once their website launches and their marketing begins. However, their mission, their story, and their location all lead to the inception of this brand identity. The Monterey Peninsula has needed a cafe that serves delicious coffee, fresh food, and offers a relaxing and inviting atmosphere. It simply doesn’t exist here, especially for a younger demographic.

We have been so thrilled, and honored to get to work with them on nearly every last detail of their brand, their website, their marketing materials, the overarching business model, creative consultation, working with the architects, and especially helping finalize their menu offerings. We are so beyond thrilled for their launch this summer and are so excited to showcase the years of planning and design, upon launch. Stay tuned for more on Coffee Bank, this is one you won’t want to miss.

 

California Pizza Kitchen: Crispy Margherita

We were thrilled to work on this brief from California Pizza Kitchen for their new Crispy Flatbread Margherita pizza. Not only was this a great shoot, these little pizza flatbreads are actually delicious when cooked in a convection toaster oven! It was a great midday snack and that always helps to love a product when your’e creating content for it!

We showcased the margherita alongside some ingredients their pizza’s use, and are suggested to top with for a custom flavor! These Margherita’s were perfect for that, we imagine they would be great to serve at parties and allow for a toppings bar, allowing all guests to get their own custom pizza, without any hassle.

After we do a brief for a global brand, we don’t always get to see the content being used. It simply goes off, to be used in a campaign in the immediate or very distant future, dependent upon some corporate red tape. When it eventually does get used, we are lucky to stumble across it ourselves, or be told by friends/family they saw our work. When we never see anything of our work, then get served an ad almost a year after completing a brief? It’s quite a pleasant surprise! We think ” wow, that looks good” then we double take and realize it’s our own content! That’s exactly what happened with our CPK brief – we forgot about it entirely after searching for a few months, then suddenly had an inflow of ads served to us via Pinterest and Instagram! We love creating compelling content, especially for brands who have great products and services.

 

Sotheby’s Christian Theroux: Realtor API Integration

It was such a pleasure getting to explore such a well designed brand identity, especially one like Sotheby’s. We were thrilled to have such effective brand resources available to aid in the stunning design of this website. Unfortunately for us (and our viewers), this website has since been taken offline as Christian does no longer work with Sotheby’s.

The interior pages of this one of a kind website showcased beautiful design elements, unique page layouts, and was still mobile friendly thanks to the partitioning within the pages and block elements! It was a straightforward solution from a development perspective that resulted in the most wonderful final result.

Integration wise, this website connected seamlessly to the full Sotheby’s realty database. We added a realtor wide search as well, so the viewers could sort within all their desired specifications. This unique website was truly a favorite of ours on so many fronts, from the brand integrations, to the endless high-quality content, to the beautiful API integration of the existing listing search functionality. We are currently digging through our archives and plan to replace the backup of this site so we can gather more screenshots for your enjoyment! Maybe by the time that happens, we’ll have an opportunity and the right client who will want a website similar to this. Be sure to let us know if you like the look of this website as we are always happy to utilize reference materials to help create your perfect website.

Updating Your Brand: Elements to Consider

Whether you’re simply refreshing, or rebranding your brand identity, it’s a huge undertaking.

So many clients come to us not knowing where to begin with their rebrand. Maybe you’ve had your brand for 40 years and are afraid to bring it into the 21st century, or maybe you’ve only had your brand a year, but it’s not generating the response you intended. Regardless of your reasoning, we have a handful of items to consider and prepare prior to starting this journey.

Refresh

A brand refresh is a makeover for your company. It can maintain some of the elements, while bringing in a refreshed typeface, colors, or complimentary elements to give a more updated look without entirely reinventing the wheel. A brand refresh maintains a strong connection to the existing brand identity’s appearance before the refresh, but simply brings it up to date and more applicable to younger audiences.

An immediate way to refresh a brand is by removing the outdated elements such as gradients, “fussy” elements that aren’t necessary, and especially typefaces.

We found a great example of the many brands that have refreshed over the decades via  Pinterest where we’ll show some of our favorites below.

As shown above, Apple, Shell and Volkswagen have all refreshed their brands over the past few decades and represent more modern, simple, applicable brand elements. This is an excellent showcase of how simply updating a few areas but maintaining the foundation is a strong way to move your brand forward without entirely rebranding a business.

 

Rebrand

A total rebrand takes things a step further. Sometimes, a rebrand is a result of a declining customer base, possibly a change of ownership, or simply just wanting to give a business a giant push in a new direction. Maybe you’re changing your services, merging with another company, or simply ready to shake things up. Regardless of your reasoning, a rebrand is a huge undertaking and should be thought out entirely, simply because it’s not something you’ll want to do again anytime in the near future. By rebranding frequently, customers may assume your messaging is ever changing, and lose trust in your product or service.

A rebrand is an excellent opportunity to critically think about your goals, your existing and target demographics, your competition, and the future of your company.

Five Tips for Updating Your Brand

These items to consider/tips for updating your brand will help identify whether you should consider a refresh or a complete rebrand.

1. Age

This is what we consider to be the very first and most obvious item to consider- when was the logo first designed, and when was it most recently updated? Your logo is just like any other marketing element of your business and needs to be revitalized after a certain period of time to stay relevant.

There is no “best fit timeline” on updating your logo or brand. Large brands like Coca-Cola make small updates every year, which help keep them continually relevant but to most consumers, the updates would be relatively unnoticeable. This is an excellent approach for companies who want to remain relevant and want to spend the time managing their brand in its entirety.

Other large companies like Google and apple opt to update their brand every five years or so. There are no specific rules on updating your brand, aside from avoiding massive changes, frequently. A company can make small changes frequently, to show the continued refinement of their brand, or make larger changes less frequently, all while maintaining consumer confidence. Having an agency create and manage your brand is the best way to ensure your brand identity and all associated assets stay on message, giving your business a more polished look, and an edge over the competition from the beginning.

2. Trends

Logos and brand elements go through trends over time. Today’s trends include hipster geometric assets and minimalist typefaces and crests being used frequently.

If your brand was designed with a trend, expect to update it more frequently, as new trends emerge so it will always look up to date. If you avoid a trend and simply go with a more modern approach to your refresh or redesign, you will have an updated brand that will last much longer. Our team always opts to integrate trendy brand elements (associated aspects that work well alongside your brand’s logo and modern typeface) while keeping your main brand identity modern yet timeless. This aids in your brand’s longevity, and will more likely allow your brand’s next update to be a simpler refresh than a complete redesign, saving you time, money, and saving potential confusion with customers. A business that is frequently rebranding can confuse customers and potentially convey that the business is unsure of it’s mission, and how it is representing itself.

3. Complexity

Logo complexity has been declining since most brands are adapting for primarily digital use. From websites to apps, you want your logo to maintain its credibility and its effectiveness across all mediums. Complex logos are frequently seen being updated throughout the past 5 years.

Designs including many small details or gradients don’t always translate well through all platforms (both online and offline). We always consider where your logo will be used when designing a brand – will it be seen on stationary and letterheads? Do you plan on printing on apparel? Do you expect to have an app in the foreseeable future? These are all questions we take into account when designing a brand that ensure your brand will be flexible enough to grow with your business.

If you’re updating your brand, these are all elements to consider when approaching your creative team and preparing for a rebrand. Spending extra time exploring and researching your target demographic, your competition, and your goals will ensure your rebrand is as effective as possible, setting you up for better success across the board.

4. Service Changes

If your company is changing it’s services or it’s structure all together, this is a great opportunity to rebrand your business or refresh your identity. From mergers to new products, new missions, or consumer feedback implementation, you want to show that your business invests in current design practices and is always moving forward. Refreshing your look will bring a revitalized energy to your company and marketing as you continue to move toward the future.

5. Growth

If you started as a small(er) company, you might not have spent the time and resources to really explore your entire brand identity. We’ve seen countless logos that have simply gotten the business through it’s launch phase, but doesn’t necessarily resonate with the customer. Providing a fresh perspective is often seen as a trust mark with consumers. By showing that you’ve grown, and you recognize this growth, your customers will be more likely to continue supporting your business as you continue to support your customer.

Your new brand has endless potential- it can say all the things your old logo didn’t, it can be approachable and versatile and represent your business in ways you may never have thought possible.

 

By updating your brand, you are able to explore new opportunities and refine that first impression your brand gives to customers. Your brand is the first impression, and the very core of your company. By spending the time finding the right design team, exploring your company’s mission thoroughly, and letting the creative process run its course, your business can have the refreshed brand identity it deserves.

 

Leisure By Design: Brand Identity, Web Development

The most successful projects are when the collaboration between our team and the client is open, thought out, and the creative process is respected. Leisure By Design is a kitchen and home design studio located in Seaside that wanted to showcase elegance and simplicity within their brand. Eventually, the goal was to have a recognizable logo mark that could be branded onto their own cabinet line. We explored a variety of logo concepts, typography combinations, and various color schemes, but continually came back to this bold, high contrast scheme of black, white and red. We knew this would allow the brand to stand out across all designs.

From the client’s needs, we established that they wanted to be a trend setter, and disrupt the industry with forward-thinking design concepts. We immediately found that high-contrast black and white imagery pairs perfectly with the brand, and would allow for various graphic elements to be used in tandem with the brand. Knowing their brand would evolve into many printed assets, the brand needed to work across multiple layouts, mediums, and incorporate the various brand elements (dots, leading lines, large drop caps, and dramatic color use).

 

Vichy Cosmetics: Commercial Photography

Most assume that large, worldwide companies would create all media and content in-house, but we’ve found that most prefer working with localized talent across the globe to create one of a kind elements for their advertising. We’ve had the pleasure of working with Vichy cosmetics on three projects, spanning over two years.

Our personal favorite was the Vichy Product Love campaign, that aimed to bring very natural, vibrant elements into the shoot. We chose to bring the product into the stunning Big Sur landscape which resulted in some of our favorite content to date.

It’s always a joy to see our digital creations being applied – whether that be a photo on a box, a logo on a bottle, or a brand translated onto a sign, one of our team’s favorite things is being able to watch our art be shared with the world.

 

Prim’s: Website Development

The Prim’s Carmel General Store is one of our more recent website projects. We designed their beautiful brand with the intention of applying nicely across all platforms and mediums, allowing Prim’s Carmel General Store’s rebrand to be as successful as possible. Using the brand guidelines we created laid the foundation for this stunning website. We were able to implement classic yet timeless design cues and brand elements without over complicating a simple brand identity.

Their store is still working on updating their POS system to integrate their many sku’s online, so we decided to develop the website with a temporary solution that lays the groundwork for when they do decide to develop their online store with us in the near future. We designed an elegant catalog system on their site to showcase the general store offerings, the multiple categories, and the vast amount of stunning products available from a local, family owned store!

This website is a personal favorite of our team’s, we encourage you to explore it live by clicking here

Organic Search Engine Optimization: Our Process Overview

Your website is live and need exposure? Well of course you do it’s a pretty site and needs to be seen! Luckily, 70% of all web traffic is organic! That means a majority of the traffic are people avoiding ads.

We aggregate the right attention to your website, your local pages, and help optimize even your social media profiles connect to your business. SEO is the line that connects your web presence together. It’s a core part of your business that is often overlooked because businesses are on every platform imaginable, hoping that one of their lines in the water will take a bite. Focus on quality, not quantity. Just take a moment to imagine out ranking a competitor, or a business name that pops up all the time and isn’t even related to yours!

SEO is a process. So you have to work with us in understanding that it is not instant. But once it gets running it takes off! To start, Josh will call you and answer any questions you may have about SEO (there’s a lot of misinformation out there) and educate you on the process. From there he will work with you to develop a list of keywords thank you would like to rank for, for either national or local results. After a few rounds of research you will have a list of core words that benefit your business. Now, this is an important difference in what separates us as SEO Experts vs SEO Agencies. Experts take the time to know your industry, your business. Agencies plug you into a software and charge.

We’ve been around the virtual block and are ready to take your business to the next level!

Be My Valentine | Styled Shoot

The California Coast is known for it’s romance,  and wonder. What better place to begin a love story than beneath a dreamy gazebo, cliffside on the ocean? After flawless pampering by Adriana and Jessica, Elizabeth was ready for the date. Their romantic table setting, styled beautifully by Cassia.Foret and View Point Events with the perfect touch of whimsy by BNB Calligraphy set the stage for just the two of them. They sipped sweet champagne and enjoyed their delectable treats, artfully created by Blue Aces Bake Shoppe.

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