The rebrand and website redesign equipped the NYC Audubon with a bold new look and platform to realize the ambitions of their new five-year Strategic Plan.
Rebranding an iconic New York City nonprofit
Building a brand and site worthy of their bold new vision:
With their 40th anniversary approaching, the NYC Audubon asked REIT to redesign their brand and website to support a dramatic increase in visibility, engagement and fundraising — especially among younger audiences. Their brand look was dated and the website was hard to navigate, unfriendly on mobile and unable to serve the organization’s evolving needs. With a bold new five-year plan launching, the organization sought the tools to express its vision of establishing a singular leadership position in New York City conservancy.
We began with brand, communication and competitive research to understand the conservancy landscape and ensure differentiation from peer organizations, notably New York Audubon. The old brand identity centered the American Kestrel in the logo and was well liked. To signal a shift into a new era of growth and leadership, the organization sought to use a raptor in flight as its signature graphic. We drew the key elements together — the raptor, NYC’s iconic skyline and green spaces — to ground the visual identity with a compelling sense of place and purpose.
With a nod to the original logo’s bird silhouette and vertical shapes, we crafted a distinctive mark that set a raptor in flight against the City’s iconic skyline as viewed from a city park. We updated the color palette to warm greens and blues to signal conservancy, and selected a bold, modern typeface to dramatically improve legibility. By establishing a clear, purposeful brand architecture, we leveraged typography, color, photography, and graphic elements to create a compelling brand system for use across all media. Next, we brought the brand to life with a website as bold and intuitive as it is effective in driving key strategic objectives.
The resulting brand was a bold step forward that could serve as a key driver of the organization’s Strategic Plan to “reaffirm who we are and what we do — and most critically, to commit to what we must become to achieve our goals.” Reaching and engaging younger generations while honoring the history of the organization was a key goal that influenced our work at every step.
Bringing the brand to life online
The new NYC Audubon website brought the new look and messaging to life. We simplified the organization’s existing content and display of programs, projects and advocacy to drive a clear, consistent and compelling message. A robust content management system (CMS) allowed for easy updates and additions while a tie-in to fundraising and CRM systems ensured continuity and effective marketing, programming and fundraising across all mission areas.
Designed for scalability and understanding
With a clear yet flexible system and approach, we built out the organization’s online presence with a responsive website design for seamless viewing across desktop, tablet and mobile. We created graphics for social media, fundraising and marketing to ensure clarity and consistency across all communications.
Visual and written brand development
Website design, copywriting and development
We partnered closely with NYC Audubon’s leadership team and worked tirelessly to win the enthusiastic endorsement of the 30-person Board of Directors. Establishing a clear brand system and ensuring its continuity across print and web was a key objective in an environment that welcomed feedback from numerous stakeholders.
Together, we created a brand and online presence to take the organization forward into the next five years and beyond. Equipped with effective communications tools, NYC Audubon is primed to fulfil their objectives of fully realizing their potential “as an exponentially more effective, actor and influential voice, on behalf of those that cannot speak for themselves: the birds we love and passionately wish to protect.” (From the organization’s Strategic Plan 2020-2025: A Vision for the Future)