Vibrant and optimistic new brand accompanied by renewed call to restore wetlands and unlock their power.
Creative agency GOOD has unveiled a new brand and brand purpose for international wetland restoration charity WWT.
The UK is losing wetlands at a staggering rate. 87% are gone, and much of what is left is in danger. Through its rebrand, WWT wants to create a movement of one million people taking action for wetlands.
GOOD – the UK’s highest-ranking B Corp creative agency – recognised during the rebrand that audiences want a solution and want to be part of it, so the creative team developed the brand purpose with optimism and direct action front and centre: to restore wetlands and unlock their power.
The brand idea mirrors this optimism: Wetlands are the way. It champions wetlands as that rare and special thing: a natural solution to our greatest challenge and the path to the future we can all rely on.
Pete Snell, GOOD’s associate creative director, says: “The brand idea unlocks the mystery of wetlands. They may look like still waters, but they are mysterious places teeming with life and activity. Almost half the world’s wildlife depends on them for homes and food. Humans depend on them, too – for the air we breathe, the food we eat, the water we drink and much more.
“Most importantly, in the fight against the climate crisis, wetlands are a powerful weapon. Every time a wetland is restored, it locks up carbon – even faster than a forest can.
“We needed to convey wetland’s vital role through the rebrand whilst still reflecting the charity’s history.”
WWT founder Sir Peter Scott’s original drawing of two Bewick swans taking flight is a much-loved icon within the world of conservation, so GOOD wanted to tread lightly when re-purposing it.
Pete Snell adds: “We delved into the archives to give the original mark a new lease of life. Re-drawing a single swan created a more confident symbol and is better adapted for digital surroundings. The direction and flight of the swan reflect wetlands leading the way. This is locked up with a new WWT wordmark that echoed the bending tributaries of wetland waterways.
Another core idea of the rebrand was to use materials from the wetlands themselves. GOOD worked with illustrator Jo Strangford to create and print illustrations that captured the textures and personalities of wetland wildlife, pairing these with a hand-crafted headline font and a distinctive new colour palette inspired by the tapestry of unexpected colours found at wetlands.
Isobel Boyce, GOOD’s associate creative director, says: “Our tone of voice needed to stand out in a crowded market and inspire response. So, we created one with attitude and action at its core – along with a bit of provocation and wit where needed.
“As with our visual identity, authenticity was important. The three principles took inspiration from the spaces we’re striving to protect: Fresh, streamlined and full of wonder. This ensured our voice would not only stand out and resonate with our audience but was also embedded with meaning.
“Few people realise what incredible, superpowered ecosystems wetlands are and the impact their restoration could have on our world. It’s very exciting to amplify this message through WWT’s rebrand and encourage more people to help restore these wondrous spaces.”
This led GOOD’s team to take inspiration from aerial shots of wetlands when creating an own-able visual language to help build brand equity in a saturated conservation charity market. The final aspect was to commission close-up photography that submerged itself within the weird, wonderful, and unexpected worlds of wetlands.
Mark Simpson, head of brand and content at WWT, says, “Our new brand has been developed to engage more people in our mission to restore wetlands at a hugely exciting time for WWT.
“With the launch of our new strategy and an updated look, we’re committed to speaking boldly for wetlands, creating a million-strong movement of people who love wetland wildlife and building on a proud tradition of conservation and wetland creation.”