Starting Upper Cut Woodworks #5: Creating an Identity for Upper Cut Woodworks

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Blog entry by Matt (Upper Cut) posted 01-06-2010 09:20 AM 1057 reads 1 time favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: Dedicating time to Woodworking Part 5 of Starting Upper Cut Woodworks series Part 6: Winning Logo + Project Backlog »

There are many web sites that will tell you what you need to do to build your company identity. This post isn’t a comprehensive summary of that, it’s just my experience so far.

Connecting with Customers (brains)

If you read The Leader’s Voice by Clarke and Crossland, you’ll find out that for an important message to resonate with your audience, they have to hear it repetitively. But it’s also best if it connects with their brain Emotionally, Symbolically, and Logically. I think the same may be true for a new Company Identity.

The Name

I feel like the name connects in these ways:

  1. Uppercut like the punch: no I don’t want customers to feel punched, but I do want them to feel like I’m going to approach their project with power and ‘knock it out.’ Symbolic.
  2. Cut is obviously a woodworking term. Logical.
  3. Uppercut will hopefully remind customers of upper crust. I want them to feel like they are getting the best. Emotional.

The Symbol

I’m currently working with designers on to finalize a logo symbol and logotype for the name. During that process, I made some decisions:

The first was about colors:

  • Upper in Green: friendly, safe, environmental, responsible, natural
  • Cut in Silver/Grey: tool steel, hard, precise, sharp
  • Woodworks in Brown: warm, natural, wood (appeals to the sense of smell and touch)

The next was about design goals:

  1. I want it clean, with just the colors above. It must look good on a hat, shirt, hoody, business card, website, etc. It must look good black and white and grayscale.
  2. Sans Serif fonts, and something modern, fresh, clean, and not overused.
  3. I wanted not only a logotype (a treatment of the name) but a Logo Symbol to stand on it’s own.
  4. The word “woodworks” has to be prominent enough so that potential customers aren’t confused about what we do.

The decision on the symbol is going to be hard, there are a lot of great ideas. The symbol also conveys a message to the potential customer, and I need to think hard about what I’m trying to say with my symbol:

  • A saw blade might be logical, but scary
  • A geometrical shape might look like a piece of woodworking, but might be a mental puzzle
  • A human figure might be personal, but might be too complicated or busy
  • A leaf might convey a responsibility to nature, but might make customers think we are a landscaping service

I’d love to hear what you think, the design is closed for submissions very soon, and then it’s on to picking the final logo.

Check out the submissions here.

-- Matt Gradwohl, Upper Cut Woodworks,

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