COMMUNITY REINVESTMENT FUND, USA (CRF)
Community Reinvestment Fund is a nonprofit organization that connects private capital to local business owners and community and economic development organizations. When CRF provides and purchases loans, these groups receive new capital to create jobs, affordable housing, and community services. Tilka Design performed research to assess current brand equity, including internal and external interviews, audits, and competitive analysis. This research and analysis created the foundation for the evolved brand and visual identity.
After many years of growth, CRF was poised to scale up its innovative financial models and selected Tilka Design to study the existing CRF brand and make recommendations for moving ahead. Tilka Design began by understanding CRF's financial models, future plans, and the newly passed federal legislation called New Markets Tax Credits — tax credits that give private investors motivation to see these underserved markets differently.
CRF's brand outcome is memorable and distinct, warm and professional. The visual system resonates with both main street and Wall Street. CRF has remained true to its culture of innovation and has used its brand system to communicate new ideas and products with ease and efficiency. Everyday CRF works with the most sophisticated financial organizations and with local, small on-the-street emerging entrepreneurs. For audiences on both ends of the spectrum, the CRF brand signifies the power of positive change.
In 2009, CRF was involved in an effort to win a development grant from Sam's Club, where grants were awarded based on how many votes—via social media—each organization received. Tilka Design created promotional materials and messages to encourage people to become fans/followers of CRF on Facebook and Twitter and to vote for them as a part of the campaign. Of the four finalists, CRF, who began the campaign with no social media presence, came in second place, securing $500,000.