Having gained the trust of AFCM after creating successful concert programs, we were asked to professionalize their marketing, the Board having realized that to compete in the performing arts arena they could no longer rely on volunteers.
The return on investment of branding is real and while many organizations believe the creation of a logo is what constitutes a brand, we know that a successful visual identity begins with a strategy brief and comes to life with good design.
Recognizing classical music’s aging audience and the need to make chamber music welcoming to a younger and more diverse audience (but without alienating loyal fans), we integrated the old and new. With a limited color palette (for its impact and cost-effectiveness in printing) a modern logo, and a strategic marketing plan we forged a path forward that took a strong stance but left room for flexible adaptation, all while ensuring every consumer touch point sent a consistent message.
Vintage illustrations of major composers are married to bright blocks of color, modern deconstruction accompanies traditional serif fonts, and type as design injects a lightheartedness lest chamber music take itself too seriously.
Images of female and African-American composers claim equal billing on brochure covers and the website to ensure inclusivity. Poems and literary excerpts remind patrons of the arts’ shared sensibility and enhance the concert experience. Copy spurns lofty vocabulary in favor of relatable ideas, presented in a tone that is relaxed not exclusionary. Periodic direct mail campaigns employ playful abstractions, reminding patrons that part of the power of chamber music is that it is not always understandable.