Case Studies

Company: Wave Accounting
Wave is a free online accounting application for small businesses.

Their mission is helping you — the small business owner — be more successful. How? By letting you do your thing. You already have enough to look after, so accounting should never waste your valuable time. Wave slashes out the time-wasting parts of bookkeeping and accounting. No more manual entry. No more confusing, time-sucking steps. By using smarter tools and game-changing technology, they are reinventing the way small businesses stay on top of their financial information.

The result: No more sleepless nights worrying about the accounting you’ve been avoiding.

Business Issue
Create a brand identity for Wave Accounting that will target small business owners and/or accountants who manage the accounting function for small business. The logo must be professional and emote feelings of security, trust, simplicity and intelligence. It must also be fresh in design, while still having longevity.

Brand Response
We thought about totally divorcing from the idea of using a wave as an image mark. I mean, it’s kind of cliché. The challenge though, was that as soon as you heard the name, you could not help but think about the visual. So, we decided to take a step back and really think about the role of accounting.

About the Logo

  1. A business' financial health is its single most important strategy to achieving success. While many factors control the success of a business, we believe its financial well-being is the foundation. We chose to represent this foundation with the basic shape of a circle.
  2. Business finance in its simplistic term is the process of money coming in and going out (accounts payable and receivable.) We used two waves (tide in and out) to denote this function.
  3. Wave Accounting is part of a financial community; a group of people sharing a common interest of improving the role of finance within their organization. The orientation of the waves shows a flow of interaction within this financial community
  4. The colour blue is often associated with words like loyalty, security and trust so we knew that blue was a direction worth exploring. However, we did not want a blue that seemed too corporate or unapproachable. We wanted to be true to Wave - full of personality, a business with a real sense of community. For that reason, we chose a warm blue and took our inspiration from the Caribbean sea for our imagemark. We balanced warm and friendly with a dark Charcoal navy to give the logo some structure and stability.
  5. We chose to put extra emphasis on Wave and less on accounting. We wanted the name to be short and memorable and we wanted to be able to develop brand extensions along the way leveraging the name Wave.
  6. The wordmark derives from the font Bauhaus. We have customized elements of this typeface for Wave's identity. Like a signature, it should be unique. The kerning (spacing between the letters) was adjusted for a clean flow. Wave Accounting allows you to do what you do best while easing the burden of accounting from your day. Just like Wave, it's clean, clear, and simple.
Option B Creative Services:
  • Client Discovery
  • Brand Identity
  • Brand Identity Extensions Logos
  • Tradeshow Booth Development
  • Promotional Gifting

What the client said:
When we contacted Joselynn and her team at Option B Creative, we knew we needed a great logo, and we had an idea of Wave Accounting's identity and brand positioning. To take us beyond that starting point, we knew we needed a responsive agency with a sophisticated design sensibility and an understanding of the heavy lifting a logo is expected to do.
As a web app, Wave needed a logo that would serve not only to identify us, but also as an icon that would appear in many different online scenarios -- some of which we wouldn't immediately be able to foresee.

Joselynn took the time to understand the lightness and freshness we envisioned surrounding Wave; the accessibility and friendliness of our brand; and the technical requirements of logos and iconography. She was a careful listener, and very responsive to feedback and revision.

We're very happy with the outcome. Our logo has served us very well through the rapid growth of our company, functioning very well in a variety of applications, including feature positioning in spaces like the Chrome Web Apps store. We've continued relying on Option B for a variety of projects, including trade show booth design and execution, T-shirt design, and more, and expect our relationship to continue into the future.

Rob Maurin
Senior Director of Marketing and Community, Wave Accounting