To help position the community and make the new district site, 100milehouse.com and tourism site, discoversouthcariboo.ca more impactful and modern, Upanup started the website project with doing complete logo rebranding for both organizations to coincide with the website launches. The District wished to refresh various brand elements, including the logos, to modernize the brand while still capturing the essence of the community, its history and the beauty of the region. The new visual branding also had to be long-lasting, as they needed something that would be relevant and usable for many years to come.
The websites were due to have a complete redesign and development (check out these signs to help you determine if it is time to redesign your website) to better reflect the District and everything it has to offer. They wanted to improve their functionality and content organization while meeting the needs of users in terms of expectations around an ever-evolving digital landscape. The District’s websites are an essential communication tool to their residents, businesses, community groups, and visitors and needed to be accessible, intuitive and visually appealing.
When approaching the branding element of this project we conducted a discovery meeting to gain a deep understanding of what was important to the District and its community. Our in-house team of designers carefully thought out the design, colours, and composition of the logos and we based the websites off of the new branding by implementing elements of it throughout the websites and overall designs. We created efficiencies by completing the branding changes before designing the websites, collateral and promotional items. The logo options were designed so the icon and wordmarks could be used separately or together, making it beneficial for various instances. In addition to the logos we also designed email signatures, letterheads, creative visuals, and business cards for both the District and Municipal teams so they can each present a new cohesive look all around.
Upanup worked closely with the project team and used clear and open communication to determine what the main goals and desired outcomes were for the district and tourism sites. We built these sites on a multi-site network to create efficiencies for staff when managing both sites. Our team of designers used their expertise to create two very unique designs for the District to choose from, ensuring they both met all of the needs of the various audiences that rely on and use the district website. The District selected the homepage design with different sections for residents, business development and visitors giving all users a customized feel based on their needs and the information they were looking for. To display the many activities and beauty in the South Cariboo Region we designed the tourism website to feature high quality photos that encompass the region and community (view our recent post about website image best practices). To offer the maximum amount of value to visitors it also had to include various tools such as an events calendar, with the option for businesses and organizations to submit their events directly on the site.
We launched the new logos and collateral along with the websites in February 2021. By using the same content management system (CMS) for both sites the District’s staff were able to create many internal efficiencies when it came to content and overall site upkeep. The District site’s homepage is very easy to navigate due to the new sitemap and quick links customized to each user type. To learn more about how to improve your website's sitemap follow these sitemap best practices. The tourism site has all the information and tools needed to plan the perfect trip to the South Cariboo Region in an accessible and user-focused way. Whether you are looking for accommodation, restaurants or activities you can easily use the search function to find the information you are looking for. Alternatively, if you want to explore the website there are accessibility techniques built in such as colour contrast for buttons or hovering indicators to make it an enjoyable experience for all users.
The district site and tourism site have won the Award of Distinction in the government and tourism categories at the Communicator Awards, an international award program honouring excellence in different areas of communication (visit our awards page to see other recognitions from various award organizations).
The District has rolled out the new branding in addition to the websites such as updating documents and creating marketing materials that feature their new look. Their new branding has been met with much enthusiasm from their community and by using their custom corporate style guide it will be easy for them to maintain their visual identity going forward. The guide includes official colour palettes, logo options, fonts, and style guidelines for logo usage ensuring the District is set up to use their new branding in various future promotions and materials.