Wallace McCain Institute
Branding / Logo Design
About The Client – The Wallace McCain Institute
The Wallace McCain Institute (WMI) is a prestigious institution at the University of New Brunswick (UNB). Launched in 2007, WMI is famous for the Entrepreneurial Leadership Program (ELP). ELP provides innovative peer programming to help entrepreneurs improve business judgment and increase their chance of success.
The Institute was created by Wallace McCain, who co-founded McCain Foods in 1957 in Florenceville, N.B. The global food giant is a massive success story for Atlantic Canada, and Wallace wanted to help other entrepreneurs succeed, too. He had a vision for an educational program that went beyond traditional textbook-based knowledge found in business school. He wanted to develop an experiential, peer-based program. And so, the Wallace McCain Institute was born.
Today, over 150 CEO members who employ more than 7000 and generate more than 1.2 billion dollars in revenue have benefited from the Wallace McCain Institute’s ELP program.
The Challenge – Creating A New Brand Identity
WMI needed help modernizing their brand identity. With the current brand identity being thirteen years old, a modernized identity was needed.
The red sail in the original identity enjoyed much recognition in the Atlantic Canadian business community. Members of WMI programs proudly wear pins with the iconic symbol. The Ginger Agency was challenged to modernize the brand identity without sacrificing the brand equity enjoyed across Atlantic Canada.
Our Work At Ginger
The Ginger Agency worked closely with Nancy Mathis, the executive director at the Wallace McCain Institute, to establish a plan to engage stakeholders across the organization. Our team collaborated with the clients’s staff, current members and alumni advisory group.
Once the project parameters were established, the research was completed and our communications strategy was developed. Collaborating closely with WMI, a strategic decision was made to shift the focus away from the word ‘Institute’ and toward Wallace McCain. We wanted to honour the business titan’s legacy and his life’s work.
The Ginger Agency also carefully considered font choice for the new logo. During our research, we discovered an interesting connection. The font Helvetica, the iconic symbol of the mid-century modernist movement, was released in 1957. This was the year the McCain Foods was founded. Helvetica is famed among designers and is often overused, so we usually reserve its use for matters of note. However, given the prestige and impact of Wallace, McCain Foods and the Wallace McCain Institute, the decision was made to select this font in order to properly honour all three.
The Result – A Confident New Image
The Ginger Agency presented bold options for the WMI’s new brand identity. Staff, membership and the organization’s advisory committee all worked together to select the new path forward.
The new brand identity modernizes WMI’s image without eroding the established brand equity.
‘Wallace McCain’ is now more prevalent in the logo, and the words ‘Institute for Business Leadership’ were added to clearly communicate the mission of the organization.
The new Wallace McCain Institute brand identity was launched at the 2019 choosing in Moncton, N.B., an annual event where close to 100 Atlantic CEOs gather to celebrate the success of the organization and to reinvigorate a shared passion for strengthening the Atlantic region’s economy.
The Ginger Agency’s CEO, Andrew Bedford, is a proud alumnus of the ELP program, so this was an exceptionally proud moment for our team. We were happy to help the Wallace McCain Institute modernize its brand identity.
Want to build a confident brand for your company or organization? We’d love to chat!
You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 51 York St. in Fredericton, N.B.