Staying relevant by getting back to being original
However, after being in business for 10+ years, First Descents was concerned that their brand was losing relevance. In addition, they felt their image had evolved away from their original intent and grown into something that wasn’t them. Over the years, new competitors had entered the market, presenting brands that felt “new” and “fresh”, eclipsing the First Descents message and purpose.
Let’s work it out
Wildstory helped conduct a brand identity refresh and worked with the First Descents team to redefine their core values and communication guidelines. One of the challenges we faced was that the brand, story and message needed to appeal to three different audiences: participants (young adults), donors (people with money), and providers (health care professionals that are the main patient referral pipeline). We ran in-person sessions with the team where we refreshed their core values, identified their personality/tone of voice, and re-centered them on their brand. At the end, the team members agreed these sessions were truly a galvanizing experience for everyone involved.
The tools to get it done
Out of these sessions, we produced a brand toolkit that defined the First Descents brand, their values and a list of communication guidelines. This branding toolkit gave them a way to move seamlessly forward with confidence without losing their culture and story in transition.
Rock it steady
Since then, First Descents has grown steadily year after year and has resolidified their spot as the leader in the adventure healing space. In 2017 alone, they provided over 1000 unique experiences through 103 programs, using 273 volunteers. That same year, First Descents was also recognized as one of OUTSIDE Magazine’s Best Places to Work because of their culture that blends engaging work with an active lifestyle.