Two brands.
One roof.

El Cap

the short story

What makes for a happy merger? Both Earth Treks and Planet Granite were two very popular indoor climbing gyms with unique cultures who were brought together under one parent company, El Cap. Wildstory was brought in to fuse these two iconic brands, yoke them together, and move them forward on the same brand path. By auditing, assessing, and even visiting all of the gym locations, we were able to provide a complete picture of what was working and what wasn’t. From there, our insights gave them the intel they needed to steer their business decisions moving forward. It also helped El Cap create a unified and articulate brand vision to ensure that as they grow, they will stay “on-brand” and not lose who they are in the process. What made our collaboration with El Cap so successful is that they gave us a seat at the executive table, helping to shape decisions as well as aiding in delivering and executing downstream. And today, El Cap looms as one of the leaders, if not THE leader, in the indoor climbing gym industry. As their agency partner, we look forward to helping El Cap write their next chapter, which includes nationwide expansion.




Culture Building
Employee Engagement
Brand Strategy
Communications Strategy
Verbal Identity
Visual Identity
Go-to-Market Strategy
Integrated Campaign
Creative Development
Copy and Scriptwriting

the long story

Earth Treks, a successful network of indoor climbing gyms, had merged with another powerhouse indoor climbing gym network, Planet Granite. Out of this merger, El Cap was formed as the parent group for both gyms and quickly became one of the leaders in the indoor climbing gym space.


Uniting cultures without losing their souls
But this merger brought about a dilemma for El Cap: how do you bring two unique cultures and brands together and form a cohesive strategy – especially when both gyms have strong, iconic founders, ingrained cultures, and loyal followers? In addition – climbing gyms are growing in popularity and more competitors keep entering the market. How would they continue to grow, innovate, and meet their financial goals without losing their soul?


The view from the top
Wildstory was brought in because of our previous work with Earth Treks. We started off by traveling to all of the gym locations, interviewing employees and customers, checking out the competition, and assessing the national climbing gym landscape. Afterwards, we summarized our findings in a comprehensive report that received high praise from both the new CEO, the PE firm (Private Equity), and the board. Our work had given them a clear picture of what their strengths were and where the gaps were, giving them the ability to identify opportunities as well as potential threats.


Identifying the route
From there, Wildstory developed El Cap’s new visual identity and created a comprehensive brand toolkit that would allow El Cap to fuse the two brands together. We even took the time to define their customer personas and create a customer journey map, ensuring that as they grow, they’ll know who their core customers are, who to market to, and how to talk to them.


Sherpas at every step
Once we created a unified and articulated brand vision for El Cap, we didn’t shake their hands and walk away. We jumped in, rolled our sleeves up, and implemented the new brand strategy – which is really the hard part. Because branding and brand storytelling are constantly evolving, we make ourselves available to El Cap 24/7 to ensure their company, employees, and communication always stays on brand.

up next:

Thor Industries