In Washington DC in October the Board of the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) took the decision to adopt a new logo after more than 25 years.
Here’s the background: When, in the late 1980s, the Hardwood Export Trade Council (HETC) was renamed and its light brown circle with tree logo was abandoned, a brief was drawn up for an altogether new logo. It must use the word ‘American’ and perhaps reflect the American flag and certainly contain a reference to forest, trees or wood. That was the simple brief. The logo then adopted has been used millions of times on brochures, at shows and in every conceivable form of promotion to become the most well-recognised hardwood logo in the world. That’s the essence of branding, which in this case represents huge and consistent investment as the American hardwood industry has grown its global exports.
Come the digital world, there were practical problems in integrating the old logo and there was a perceived need to modernise. The newly approved logo, now launched, ticks a lot of boxes. Most important, it is still completely recognisable. Secondly it works for the digital age, having adopted two squares rather than two rectangles. Finally the slightly changed colours look more modern. Let’s hope the new logo will last another 25 years.