Every Voice, Every Vote (EVEV) is a coalition of community groups and media organizations in Philadelphia collaborating to elevate the city’s diverse voices, inform voters, and promote civic action around the 2023 local elections. Led by The Lenfest Institute for Journalism, which owns The Philadelphia Inquirer and invests in innovative models to strengthen local media, the campaign provides grants to journalists, media outlets, and community organizations to report on the priorities that all Philadelphians feel should be centered in the next local election. More than 50 media and community partners joined the coalition and plan to host nearly 200 forums and community events serving all of the communities across the city. They will also produce journalism and voting guides in at least 13 languages to help inform and engage residents.
The Lenfest Institute selected Message Agency to establish a name, brand strategy, visual identity, and website for the campaign, which needed to launch prior to the primaries in 2023. Their request was to develop a name within a month of the project’s kickoff in order to begin actively recruiting partners, while the remainder of the brand and site were developed.
Lenfest originally sought to use its working title, “Next Philly Mayor” as the campaign name to expedite the work. However, during discovery we heard how the initiative sought to engage candidates and communities beyond the mayoral election. After a thorough research and ideation phase, we arrived at the name “Every Voice, Every Vote,” which emphasized the importance of elevating the voices of all Philadelphians to elected officials and engaging the whole city in the electoral process, with the ultimate goal of using reporting to also hold those officials accountable for their promises over time.
The development of the mark focused first and foremost on locating the initiative within Philadelphia, as the title did not include the City explicitly. We drew on the iconic Liberty Bell, a motif frequently used and immediately identifiable by the audience, and incorporated two elements that reflected both voices and voting—a speech bubble and checkmark. The bell was also situated to appear to be ringing, providing dynamic motion to the mark and signaling action.
One challenge with the logo was a need to co-brand the Every Voice, Every Vote identity with those of newsroom and community partners. We developed a series of guidelines to assist partners with applying the brand in various settings.
Our brand strategy and messaging framework helped to kick off the campaign on time and with energy. We also completed a rapid prototype site for an early launch and then built out a complete CMS-based initial site to provide updates on the campaign, recruit partners, and consolidate coverage across the city. Using the messaging framework delivered as part of the brand strategy, we were able to easily create copy for the website that helped to explain the initiative to site visitors.
In addition to developing a comprehensive brand strategy document, Message Agency also assisted Lenfest in creating a series of templates that extended the brand into social media graphics to help ensure fidelity to the brand.