A little inspiration goes a long way. Here are three Pittsburgh companies with brands that absolutely kill it.
A good brand stands out and showcases effective results in several major areas:
- Narrative Cultivation
- Font Selection, Color Scheme Development & Logo Design
- Visual identity
In the name of branding, we’re going to discuss three Pittsburgh companies that are absolutely rocking it.
We didn’t randomly search out for these companies just to write this article either—these are brands that organically caught our eyes with irrestible identities.
1.) Wigle Whiskey
With a narrative that will knock you off your seat (like a good drink) and a vibrant visual identity, Wigle Whiskey tops our list of Pittsburgh companies that have this branding thing figured out.
The Timeless Story:
They named their distillery after a “good-natured man who was sentenced to hang for his unsinkable love of whiskey.” The protagonist of their story “unwittingly helped spark the Whiskey Rebellion, which pitted Western Pennsylvania distillers against George Washington’s troops.”
The company’s goal is simple—to distill spirits much like Pittsburgh did when it was the center of American Whiskey throughout the 1700 and 1800s.
This timeless story roots this company in both Pittsburgh and American history. But it doesn’t stop there.
Take a quick look at Wigle’s website, social media platforms and—if you’re smart enough to pick up a product—bottle packaging. The story shines through every element along with consistent color choices (vibrant blues, greens, purples, yellows and oranges), fonts and logos.
Wigle has a set color scheme, font selection and logo usage policy. And you know what? They stick to it through and through. If it’s Wigle you’ll know undoubtedly that it’s Wigle wherever you see it.
You might be reading this saying, “Well, of course that’s how it should be done!” From out of the gate, brands are predisposed to not properly branding themselves. As they begin to grow, the visual and written identity mutates until one day it’s a mess.
What’s most impressive about brands like Wigle—besides the results of what’s been created—is that branding happened sooner rather than later. It was an intentional priority and it continues to carry through with everything created.
Easy Press Kit:
On another note, Wigle has a press kit section on the website. It doesn’t trigger an auto-download for a huge PDF file—it tactfully showcases logo files and a variety of photos. The media doesn’t want to fumble through a goliath PDF. They want an easy to navigate website page with what they need and no strings attached.
Kudos to Wigle on this addition.
2.) The Brew Gentlemen Beer Company
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The Brew Gentlemen Beer Company—located in Braddock—is the definition of a craft brewery. They create ambitious, complex and delicious beers. A few examples include chai wheat, cucumber wheat, belgian kiwi golden ale and an eyebrow-raising Rapid Prototype Factory series.
To be honest, I’ve had my eyes on these guys ever since I caught an article in the Post Gazette about them. From day one, they’ve stood out with a solid brand identity.
As I mentioned with Wigle, this is significant. People who became familiar with The Brew Gentlemen Beer Company in the beginning can continue to recognize and promote them today.
Iconic and Intentional:
It’s obvious that The Brew Gentlemen Beer Company is intentional about the brand that’s been created.
Consistent choices have been showcased across all forms of print and digital. There is a color scheme, font and distinct design style. Every beer type is showcased with an iconic label with a splash of electric color while continuing to follow suit with the brand’s primary gray and orange.
A good brand shapes your expectations and ultimate experience.
The Brew Gentlemen Company brand smolders with adventure. It’s quickly picked up in narrative pieces and further promoted in the mantra of the very brews created. In addition to the chai wheat, cucumber wheat, belgian kiwi golden ale and an eyebrow-raising Rapid Prototype Factory series, they bring conquests like “Thanksgiving Dinner” and a chipotle double IPA.
Live Tap List:
A unique addition is the brand’s live tap list on the website.
With it, you never have to wonder what’s on and what’s not. It’s also incredibly useful for any prospective patrons scoping the place out.
Heinz is a Pittsburgh-started legend that provides a perfect example of the longterm effects of branding.
Branding is Key to Local Success, but Absolutely Vital to Worldwide Success:
The brand that Heinz has established, tweaked and maintained since 1876 is so solid that I don’t have to say much about it because people have known it for over 150 years.
If you want to be a brand promoted and recognized worldwide like Heinz, you have to put the work brands like Wigle and The Brew Gentlemen have put into it on the front end.
Study the largest, most successful brands in the world—like Heinz and others like Starbucks—and you’ll immediately notice the strength of their brand identity. They have it figured out and has allowed them to be instantly recognizable global brands.
What Pittsburgh brands have you noticed have this branding thing figured out?