PolicyLink is a national research and action institute dedicated to advancing economic and social equity, particularly for communities of color and low-income communities. Founded in 1999, the nonprofit organization employs strategies such as research, policy analysis, technical assistance, and advocacy to promote equitable access to opportunities and resources.
PolicyLink is a prominent organization in the realm of racial equity, founded and led by African-American professionals. Operating under a rigorous accountability framework, it is committed to addressing the needs of the 100 million individuals living at or below the poverty line. The organization actively collaborates with grassroots movements and maintains strong connections with housing advocates and governmental bodies. PolicyLink embodies its guiding principle, “lifting up what works,” by amplifying effective, community-driven solutions across diverse spheres of influence.
PolicyLink focuses on a variety of issues, including affordable housing, health equity, education, and workforce development, emphasizing the promotion of successful policies and practices. Their ultimate aim is to create an inclusive, fair, and just society where everyone has the opportunity to thrive.
For this project, PolicyLink’s Spatial Futures Initiative (SFI) was the main branding focus. The SFI aims to address systemic inequities in land use and housing policies that disproportionately affect Black and Brown communities. Through a multi-tiered collaboration with housing justice leaders across local, state, and national platforms, the initiative will examine existing policies that perpetuate racial disparities and fuel community displacement. Adopting a “reckon, repair, transform” framework, the project formulates actionable policy recommendations and presents a range of model strategies that can be immediately implemented. The project will also amplify these insights in public discourse and furnish research support to stakeholders, including campaigns, policymakers, and communities, endeavoring to enact meaningful change.
Creative Repute was given the opportunity to develop branding for the SFI, a division of PolicyLink. Our collaboration included crafting a creative brief, designing a comprehensive style guide, and creating a unique logo that embodies SFI’s commitment to dismantling barriers to housing and land for communities of color. This process involved close engagement with the SFI team, ensuring that the final deliverables effectively represented their innovative spirit and strategic objectives.
The branding project started with a deep dive into discovery where we delved into understanding PolicyLink, SFI, and the aspirations and expectations of their stakeholders. This phase began with the kickoff meeting where both the SFI and Creative Repute team made introductions, discussed the design process and client preferences, and engaged in a thorough exploration of the client’s vision through a series of 30 targeted discovery questions, where we learned that incorporation of Afrofuturism in the designs was preferred. The deliverable for the discovery process was a detailed creative brief ensuring that both SFI and our design team were aligned in our comprehension of the project’s objectives, mission, target audience, and aesthetic direction.
After developing the creative brief, our team presented preliminary versions of the style guide and logo, drawing inspiration from information gathered during discovery. Through three rounds of revisions, refinements were made implementing valuable client feedback until a final version of the style guide and logo were approved. Editable files in various formats were then provided to SFI to allow seamless integration across different platforms.
The project had a tight deadline, which was a concern in the early stages. Meticulous planning and strong communication between the internal and external teams allowed the final deliverables to be delivered in a timely manner.
What does the Creative Repute team consider when working with a tight deadline?
The project with Spatial Futures Initiative concluded successfully, resulting in a strong brand identity that aligns with SFI’s mission. Our collaborative efforts led to the creation of a detailed creative brief, a comprehensive style guide, and a unique logo, all of which reflect SFI’s commitment to spatial policy and equity. Despite the tight deadline, our efficient teamwork ensured timely delivery of these impactful deliverables. This project showcases the effectiveness of combining strategic planning with creative expertise to meet and exceed client expectations.