Central Illinois Elite

Sometimes, branding can be just as important as the other components of a business. It’s important to prioritize the look and feel of a brand. Central Illinois Elite Volleyball was looking for a just a small amount of that custom experience. All it takes is a little custom work to make all the difference.

Central Illinois Elite Volleyball (CIE) is a volleyball organization rooted in club training and event hosting. As a result, CIE hosts several events throughout the year that are geared toward tuning their player’s skills as well as promoting their brand of club volleyball. The events that they host are paramount in attracting new players to the organization. Therefore, a customized look and feel for these events was needed.

I was approached with the opportunity to brand these events both by name as well as visual appearance. As I started the process, I needed to take several factors into consideration for this undertaking. The time of year, age groups, frequency, locale, and the sport itself all played a role in determining the branding of each event. Ultimately, four names and designs were agreed upon.

These four designs all contain components of the time of year, sanction, organization, venue, and locale. The first design (CIE Icebreaker) was created with the intention of (figuratively) breaking the ice as the season started. The second design (Viva La Volley) was created with the time of year in mind. Cinco de Mayo was the nearest holiday to this event date, and therefore warranted a name in line with it. The third design (CIE May Madness) was another design more centered around the time of year, while incorporating components of the sport itself. The fourth and final design (CIE Diggin at the Dome Championships) was a play on verbiage used within the sport as well as the venue.

By first creating names that could be transitioned into visuals, I was able to add some depth to the branding of each event. Moreover, each event name can remain the same from year-to-year for event brand consistency. The visual design of each event may be changed each year for promotional purposes as. This is especially important for CIE, as event apparel is sold with the visuals included on shirts.

All in all, CIE has been satisfied with their small custom branding. I, myself, have been pleasantly surprised by the overall reception to this branding by CIE organization players as well. My hope, is that CIE continues to find more need for customized branding of this type moving forward as this will help grow their organization overall.