Why startups change logos: branding, redesign and new beginnings

#design #brand #startup #livestream #video #logo

Gregor Landwehr, Contentflow co-founder: insights about design and re-branding of a company.

2018, the year of the octopus. At least for Contentflow, the startup from our batch 4 making livestream easier to implement. We paid a visit to their office to talk about brand, redesign and new beginnings.

1 — Contentflow is now represented by an octopus. Is this your new mascot? What is the story behind it?

Yes, it is like our mascot, we call him Flow.

The first logo we had didn’t have any graphic element, it was just plain text. We knew that we had to change this for several reasons:

Before and After. “Go with the flow. “

First, we wanted to protect our brand worldwide and we couldn’t do this with the old logo, because only with typography it was not protectable (legally). You can use logos with typography, but the word has to be very special. Contentflow in the English speaking countries is not special enough to be protected. So we started the process building a new one in the end of last year.

One important thing when redesigning the logo was to portray the livestream software more like a “lifestyle product” which people could see as easy to use and more accessible. That’s always a problem with softwares: they seem very techie, not so emotional — it’s like selling bank accounts.

The third thought was that many of our competitors are using similar graphic elements related to video, such as play button, monitor…The problem with these logos is that they are more or less the same and not so outstanding so that people will remember. That was the moment when the Octopus came into play.

The “AHA!” moment

While we were looking at the drafts and playing with the fonts, the designers presented the idea of an octopus. It sounded a bit strange at the beginning, but for me it was the moment one says “aha!” and felt this was THE idea. Because it is very outstanding, I don’t know other broadcasting or screening company using an octopus and it’s an animal which fits perfectly into our product.

Can you spot the “C” in the new version?

With Contentflow there are lots of tools within one tool, so you need something like an octopus in the background doing all these processes behind. It’s like the octopus is doing all the technical stuff in the background so that customers can focus on the content when using our software.

Plus, octopuses are very intelligent and powerful — like our software!

2 — Who designed it? Did you hire designers?

We worked with same guy who has designed our first logo, Andreas Kiesgen together with Florian Neuber. We knew Andreas from projects we did in the past and it was an advantage to work with him in the re-design because he knows the company, what we are doing, the idea behind it. We are talking about company branding which is not only the logo, but which has also to relate somehow to the new UX design of the whole product.

“What is always hard when you build a logo is that it has to work in different sizes: from the smallest icon you have in the brownser to the biggest poster you print. And that’s not really easy.” Gregor Landwehr co-founder.

3 — How did people react to the new logo?

I had to wait until the first draft was ready so I had something to show to the others in the team. At first, their reaction was of surprise, but as I explained they started to understand and buy the idea.

Now we are starting to build communications around it, include the icon in our communications, in the newsletter, business cards…there have even been discussions on how to implement it in the product.

The new logo is already featured in the startup’s office in Hamburg.
“Many tech companies have logos that nobody will remember. if people laugh or have a reaction when they see our logo, that’s what I want them to do. Even if they dislike it…it’s better than no reaction.” Gregor Landwehr co-founder.

4 — New logos usually symbolizes new beginnings. What’s next for Contentflow?

To have new UX design is a big step. The new architecture behind this will give us the possibility to implement new functions. The latest function we’ve integrated was the cloud-based cutting. It its very awesome because customers can use it to cut the video within the contentflow software, very fast, so it helps publishers to save time. Our developers are now working on implementing new functions, which sould be coming up soon.

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