Environment

Inter-Fluve, Inc. | Accentuating the design and restoration of rivers

Accentuating the design and restoration of rivers

A brand refresh for a cutting-edge interdisciplinary engineering firm

CHALLENGE 

Inter-Fluve is an interdisciplinary firm specializing in investigations, design, and restoration of rivers, lakes, and wetlands. As pioneers in their field, they develop solutions to complex aquatic challenges while balancing human and environmental needs. With over 1,600 successful projects across 4 continents and all regions of the United States, Inter-Fluve is challenged to communicate the depth and breadth of their excellent work.

The firm had recently launched a new website when they contacted Blue Marble to help with a variety of printed materials. The website project established a new direction for the brand identity with prolific use of real project photos and friendly staff bios. Our challenge was to provide a more precisely defined set of graphic styles and template documents for ongoing use by internal staff. Historically, documents like project proposals, resumes, and project summaries had been created without a consistent plan. Inter-Fluve was facing a common challenge, where many staff members were tasked with creating printed materials with limited time, changing needs, and varied levels of skill and interest in the task.

INSIGHT

While we couldn’t change alleviate the hard work of in-house publication and design, we were confident we could provide a pool of template resources considered specifically for the needs of Inter-Fluve staff. First, we worked with marketing staff to identify the needs and limitations. We also came on site and met with engineers and other non-marketing personnel to understand their perspective on the brand and their involvement in the publication process. And, we did extensive visual research to understand their language and culture and how the brand had already evolved over time.

In our initial conversations, Inter-Fluve’s marketing staff shared the desire to develop something classy, elegant, consistent, and personable. The key was creating something that is possible, if not easy, to maintain. With defined fonts, colors, and a few key elements to satisfy the aesthetic needs, staff would be able to resist the temptation to reinvent new designs each time. We worked together to identify open-source fonts that look good so that multiple staff could easily collaborate on these documents, and we trained the staff on how to use Adobe InDesign for the trickier elements of our designs. We also helped them to set expectations internally for how photography is is a critical investment, and that no template can replace thoughtful design work. 

RESULTS

Over the years since the work was completed, Inter-Fluve has continued to use the templates we developed. Thanks to their commitments to shooting quality photos, learning the ropes with design programs, and staying true to the templates we developed together—they now have a strong arsenal of resumes and project summaries to pull from for each new project proposal. The results include greater efficiency with sales and outreach efforts, positive impressions on prospective clients, and increased confidence and pride amongst staff.

 Project Summaries

Project Summaries

 Staff Resume

Staff Resume

 Project Proposal

Project Proposal

 

CLIENT

Inter-Fluve, Inc.

SERVICES

Print and digital publication

FOCUS

Environment


“Clients and employees have been impressed with our materials. It’s worked well to have solid templates that look great and keep our deliverables looking consistent. Sometimes there’s no substitution for having good design sense and being able to create a document for a unique situation. I’ve been working on improving my design abilities but I also recognize there’s a time to bring in the pros when a template doesn’t cut it. Overall, the investment was very worthwhile. BMC did a great job in completing what we asked of you. The templates are elegant yet simple; they make the company look good. Just as important, I think they make employees feel proud of the product they are creating.

– Jonathan Graca, Marketing and Field Technician, Inter-Fluve

US Forest Service | More than just a trail

More than just a trail

Building stakeholder engagement through elegant design

CHALLENGE

The last time stakeholders in the development and maintenance of the Florida National Scenic Trail sat together to discuss goals was 1986 when collaborators created the original Comprehensive Plan. Priorities and personalities shifted in the ensuing years until it became clear it was necessary to bring together land holders, trail managers and local conservation groups in order establish new priorities and create a strategy for the near-term evolution of the Trail. Conservation Impact facilitated the convening of stakeholders and managed the creation of a new 5-year strategic plan for the Florida National Scenic Trail.

The strategic plan is a landmark document that provides a framework for focused, collaborative efforts and allocates resources to achieve specific results that benefit both the trail and trail user. The plan also presents a new partnership model that fully engages a diverse group of land managers who are connected to the trail. In order to bring the concepts presented to life and ensure the information would be read, the project team hired Blue Marble to come up with a thoughtful design for its layout.

INSIGHT

To appeal to a wide variety of constituents, the strategic plan needed to look less like a government white paper and more like a feature in an issue of National Geographic. To that end, we emphasized beautiful photography and lots of white space to evoke the ambience of the trail as it traverses the Florida coast and inland the expanse of its open spaces. We also incorporated a variety of staff and trail-user photos which gives readers a sense of personal connection and ownership. The publication's landscape orientation connects with the impressive length of the trail but more importantly maximizes optimal readability on screen.

RESULTS

As a printed brochure, the Florida National Scenic Trail Strategic Plan makes the work that has been done tangible for stakeholders. Digital versions of the plan have been widely distributed making it easy to share pertinent information among the partner entities and keep the public engaged. Elements of the brochure have since been used as visual references when providing progress updates. 


 

CLIENT

US Forest Service

SERVICES

Print and digital publication

FOCUS

Environment


HRSWCD | Increased visibility for local conservation efforts

Increased visibility for local conservation efforts

Cleaning up the online environment

CHALLENGE

The Hood River Soil & Water Conservation District (HRSWCD) provides technical, educational and financial support to the local community for the preservation and conservation of natural resources. Over its fifty-plus years of existence, the organization has done a great job of evolving to remain relevant. Unlike many conservation districts, HRSWCD had invested time and attention building a web presence. However, while the information on its existing site was vast, it was not well organized and its maintenance was extremely cumbersome. There was no recognizable brand identity or consistency in presentation. The liberal use of dated clip art was distracting and detracting. When HRSWCD asked Blue Marble to redesign the website, we knew we could dramatically improve their efforts to reach more people with information and services. It was a great opportunity to demonstrate how clean design can support a cleaner world.

INSIGHT

The new website would need a significant design update and restructuring in order to present information clearly so more people could understand what HRSWCD does and take advantage of its services.

We quickly cleaned up their logo and overall style to provide a consistent, professional experience and reinforce HRSWCD’s perception as a credible and effective environmental steward. HRSWCD had attractive photos of flora and fauna, so we built a system to allow these images to be featured throughout the site.

The site includes an interactive open community section called “Wildlife Watch” where anyone is able to post descriptions and photos of local wildlife sightings. News and events listings, an important area of activity for HRSWCD, are cross referenced throughout the sight with the ability to filter listings for a refined view.

We built the website with a content management system specifically customized for the needs of HRSWCD. The CMS features a range of custom editing modules that allow staff to easily collect and manage the information for various types of resources, projects, and inventory for their annual plant sale. A user-friendly CMS is a critical aspect of the site redesign because staff had found maintaining their previous site challenging to the point of frustration and abandonment.  

RESULTS

  • With a quality user experience and greater ease of information dissemination, HRSWCD staff feel confident in their outreach efforts.

  • The site acts as a central hub for HRSWCD’s related entities, the National Resource Conservation Service and the Hood River Watershed Group, so that community members understand all of the services available to them through one office.

  • Staff are able to manage the online component of their annual plant sale more effectively.

  • With a completely redesigned wildlife log, user engagement has increased. Staff are able to readily approve and publish user submissions from with the admin interface.

FORGING AHEAD

HRSWCD has remained largely self-sufficient with the administration of its website content which is exactly how we intended it to be.

 

CLIENT

Hood River Soil and Water Conservation District

SERVICES

Website design and development

FOCUS

Environment


FCA | Building a better fish screen

Building a better fish screen

Using images and video to show innovation

CHALLENGE

Farmers Conservation Alliance (FCA) helps farmers reduce their costs of maintaining their water delivery systems, protect fish, and keep their canals free of debris through a unique and innovative fish screen technology. As engineers and product designers, FCA highly values a strong blend between function and aesthetics. This carries over into the organization’s brand identity, with materials that artfully present its product, process, and impacts. FCA’s fish screen product is complex and not easily explained in words alone. Therefore, the website needed to show the construction, installation, and operational processes of the screen using images, video, and webcam feeds.

INSIGHT

Blue Marble recommended that FCA implement a WordPress-based website with a series of page templates to present different types of media content — including photo galleries, videos, and webcam feeds. With a number of different audiences to address — farmers, engineers, project managers and funders — it was important to have most of the content at the top level. Doing so required the use of “mega menus” that organize a large number of top level links in such a way that users can quickly access what they need but without feeling overwhelmed by their choices. We also created a special area to present information about FCA’s individual fish screen projects with individual project profile pages that include video, photo galleries and details about the site.

RESULTS

  • As FCA has grown from a small nonprofit into a venture-backed social enterprise, its website and other communications materials adequately demonstrate the value of its fish screen to investors and clients.
  • The site’s structure allows FCS to present complex information in a well-organized, easy-to-navigate way.
  • The WordPres content management system allows staff to manage their content and easily catalog and display all completed fish screen projects.

FORGING AHEAD

As needs arise for the site, we have built additional page templates and styles that gives FCA a great degree of flexibility and control over how new types of content is added and their ability to keep current information fresh and up-to-date. 

 

CLIENT

Farmer's Conservation Alliance

SERVICES

Website design and development

FOCUS

Environment