Ready to rebrand? Need to redesign your website? We’ve been there ourselves…a few times. As much as we tend to say that the “shoemaker’s children always go barefoot”, when we can spare the time, we’re lucky to have such a talented in-house team to keep our brand fresh.
Ivy Rules of Thumb
Before we take a jaunt down memory lane, here are a few tips if you’re wondering whether it’s time to update your branding.
When is it time for a logo update?
If it has more words than design...
If it's been years since you really looked at it...
If you originally drew it on a napkin...
In a world where logos are as recognizable as brand names, your “brandmark” is an important investment. While some businesses may need a completely new logo to signal a dramatic change in direction, sometimes all a logo needs is a little freshening up to stand out. What makes a good logo?
How often should I redesign my website?
We’re often asked by prospective clients how long their website will last. We usually respond with a 3-5 year, best-guess range. Truly, we can’t anticipate how technology will evolve from year to year, but we can say without a doubt that a well-designed, user-friendly website is the most important marketing tool your company can have. So, don’t let updating your website fall to the wayside with your own shoe cobbling projects. What does a website cost?
The Ivy Timeline
"The Ivy Group" is born.
After initially joining forces in 1987 to work on projects for Scott Paper Company and R.R. Bowker, English teacher, Pam Fitzgerald, and librarian, Nancy Davis, decided to formalize their partnership.
“The Ivy Group, Ltd” is officially incorporated in Virginia and Pennsylvania.
The inaugural ivygroup.com is launched.
Back in the days of dial-up internet and websites designed with HTML tables, Ivy’s site was short on visuals but spot-on in copy.
At this point, we were touting a simple text-based logo that used the Avenir font.
As the story goes, our co-founders named the company as a nod to their alma maters and Ivy League education. When it came to designing this logo’s icon, an ivy leaf still fit the bill.
Adobe Flash was still kicking and the developers had some fun with interactive web elements.
As a 100% women-owned business, Ivy became SWAM-certified.
Ivy named one of the Top 500 Emerging Businesses in the US.
Logo & website redesigned.
The Ivy leaf got a makeover. We wanted to marry the idea of our exceptional technical capabilities (the “techy” look) with our own aesthetic—clean, straightforward, and innovative.
We also launched the first iteration of ivygroup.com to include a content management system. WordPress was still a fledging CMS, so we used our very own proprietary system, Mimik IMS.
Logo refreshed & website redesigned
A brandmark is like a living creature, ever-evolving, and sometimes a little “nip and tuck” is all you need. We subtly altered the 2010 logo to add some more fluidity.
Website updated to be mobile responsive.
To ensure that technology isn’t outpacing us and resulting in security and performance issues, we routinely conduct technical maintenance. Some updates are a breeze while others require more careful planning. With the rapid adoption of smartphones and the resulting increase in mobile traffic, we updated our site to optimize the user experience across devices.
Website migrated from Mimik IMS to WordPress CMS.
At this point, we had experience using several different content management systems but started using WordPress more regularly for client websites. For ivygroup.com we kept the styling the same but made the move to integrate with WordPress. Why WordPress?
Logo variations added and website redesigned.
Keeping the logo icon and text the same, we updated the color palette and created layout variations that simplified our name to “Ivy Group”.
While our last site was more of a little, slightly conservative black dress, we wanted to bring out the fun and flirty (okay, we’ll translate flirty as awesomely alluring creativity) side of the company. We also took this opportunity to play with some web trends, such as looping videos, Pinterest-style masonry article layouts, and big, beautiful imagery for our Work pages. Integrated with a custom WordPress backend, the site was launched in January 2016.
Brand color palette and website updated.
We released a vibrant palette, shown here with purpose statement art. This image showcases the bright colors and our mission (updated in 2019) to help communities thrive.
To reflect the new colors, we made some modest style updates to the site.
At the close of the year, co-founder Nancy retired.
Logo redesigned and website updated.
Been There, Done That!
In summary, over our 30+ years in business, the Ivy brand has witnessed…
Innumerable iterations in between