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The Veritas Forum

Clarifying the vision of a growing organization committed to universities.

Since 1992, The Veritas Forum has invited university communities to dialogue with respect and curiosity across differing worldviews. They are best known for their rich legacy of campus forums (2,000 and counting) that feature academics and leading thinkers. But in recent years, they have expanded their work to also include student publications, original media content, and faculty cohort gatherings. Veritas hired Open Book in a strategic season of growth, as they entered their 30th anniversary year, eager to sharpen how they tell their story and elevate their brand for their broadening stakeholders. We worked to bring alignment across the landscape of their programs, as well as position them to deepen a sense of community and shared mission for all audiences. It was our privilege to engage in deep work with Veritas, encompassing strategic positioning and multi-channel creative work.

Impact

A new invitational story

The Veritas Forum is now equipped with “exploring the ideas that shape our lives,” a story that expresses their core mission to a variety of audiences in a concise and centralized way.

A refreshed brand identity

A new visual identity for The Veritas Forum supports the core story, provides flexibility as they engage various college campuses, and cultivates internal and external alignment.

Integrated marketing tools

The Veritas Forum is empowered with branding across media channels and key communication pieces, which presents a consistent experience wherever people engage them.

Strategy + Story Formation

A sense of invitation and community is central to Veritas Forum—so we sought to give voice to that in a brand story that animates their work.

As a result of deep strategy and discernment, together we identified a single phrase to crystalize their heartbeat: “exploring the ideas that shape our lives.”

“Exploring” is a strategic word choice evoking dialogue based in curiosity, hospitality, and humility. While The Veritas Forum has a historic commitment to seeking truth, the word “ideas” helps them lead with language for the widest possible audience—regardless of a person's faith commitment. The emphasis on “shaping” evokes a deep wrestling with fundamental ideas that inform how we see the world and act in it. Finally, the phrase “our lives” re-emphasizes a sense of mutuality and underscores a willingness to be changed by the process. All together, the story strategy helps welcome a diverse audience into a shared experience of discovery.

Logo + Visual Identity

The previous logo of The Veritas Forum included a maroon color to evoke their Harvard roots and a shield to reference academia. We modified these pieces that were meaningful from their previous brand and built a new wordmark with an embedded shield shaped by graduated lines. This new logo helps them brand media content with consistency as they grow their podcast and YouTube offerings. We also saw opportunity to add in a sense of growth and possibility, true to their belief how ideas shape and build people over time. All together, they are equipped with a refreshed visual identity that represents their historic roots while supporting their new story.

University Co-Branding

Because The Veritas Forum works with hundreds of university communities, their brand needs enough flexibility to represent a wide range of locations and audiences. We built a visual language that can be easily adapted with a clear sense of place to give each community a sense of recognition and ownership. The result is branding that helps express that national organization’s particular commitment to each local context.

The Brand Toolkit

With student teams around the country, The Veritas Forum is best served with a toolkit that is shareable and easy to update in real-time. The microsite we built educates their volunteers on the Veritas brand and provides the resources they need to develop programs on their campuses. This toolkit empowers Veritas leaders to translate the mission of the organization into their own contexts.

Photo + Video Direction

The Veritas Forum needed photography and video assets to evoke their commitment to the university and the life-shaping experiences of teachers and students. We first gave direction on imagery that could express community, generous dialogue, and a sense of place. We then traveled to the site of Veritas’ founding and the home of numerous university institutions working directly with staff and volunteers to capture video and photography on site. These choices give a grounding visual anchor for Veritas on the website and printed materials, and the imagery lives on as a resource for their work in the future.

Website

As The Veritas Forum expanded, the organization outgrew its old website and its original use as a content library for recorded events. We partnered with them to design a new website with a vision-driven presentation of their new brand story, visual identity, and programs.

This deep-level update both helped The Veritas Forum move away from a content library and shaped new language around their re-structured program areas of campus dialogue, community formation, and content development. A new digital front door, the site integrates the brand story into every page, features new visual design supporting the story concept, and elevates the identity as a whole. Each page offers accessible and inviting doorways into deeper engagement with the mission of The Veritas Forum.

Annual Report

Veritas’ annual report is a cornerstone communication touchpoint with partners and, for many, it was the first exposure to the new visual identity and brand story of the organization. We designed a visually rich 32-page book to re-introduce their vision and present their restructured program areas. The result was a galvanizing summary of the year that was well-received by the Veritas community, inspiring both alignment and shared excitement for the future.

Event Strategy + Execution

Open Book advocated for, and helped plan, a major kick-off event that generated 2,750 people in attendance. Attendees were not told that it was a launch event for a capital campaign, much less told the name Rise. Instead, we helped position it simple as an important night of vision-casting. Then, at the event, the Rise story, vision, video, and invitation were unveiled comprehensively. Nearly everyone in the room ended up walking forward that night to fill out a personal geo-marker card with their commitment to be part of the Rise campaign.

Live Messaging + Talking Points

We developed overall event messaging and talking points for the lead speakers and communicators of the New York Project team. This involved finding both succinct soundbites and effective narratives that reinforced the big-picture vision at play while also illuminating specific metrics and reporting.

Event Materials

EncounterLife decided used the new brand story as a launchpad for a state-wide event for Colorado churches. We worked with them to name the event "We Love Colorado" and developed materials and custom packaging to serve as invitational outreach tools.

Print Materials + Environmental Design

A restaurant needs a brand you can experience at every meal and every visit. We created menus, table signage, gift cards, and a 30-foot mural to surround the place in the feeling of possibility.

Video

One of the cornerstones of The Veritas Forum is the Forum Event—ongoing campus events that foster dialogue with prominent thinkers from different worldviews. We developed a script, captured footage, and designed motion graphics to create a 90-second video for them to show before every event. The goal is to reinforce a mindset they invite all attendees to share—one of humble curiosity and willingness to wrestle with ideas different than one’s own.

Expanding the Brand

As a wide-reaching organization, The Veritas Forum needs a variety of communication materials. We applied their new brand across platforms—from digital to print including social media assets, a conference micro-site, document templates, and more. With every touchpoint, a variety of stakeholders can be invited in, showing the flexibility of the brand across platforms.

The Veritas Forum

Clarifying the vision of a growing organization committed to universities.

Since 1992, The Veritas Forum has invited university communities to dialogue with respect and curiosity across differing worldviews. They are best known for their rich legacy of campus forums (2,000 and counting) that feature academics and leading thinkers. But in recent years, they have expanded their work to also include student publications, original media content, and faculty cohort gatherings. Veritas hired Open Book in a strategic season of growth, as they entered their 30th anniversary year, eager to sharpen how they tell their story and elevate their brand for their broadening stakeholders. We worked to bring alignment across the landscape of their programs, as well as position them to deepen a sense of community and shared mission for all audiences. It was our privilege to engage in deep work with Veritas, encompassing strategic positioning and multi-channel creative work.

Impact

A new invitational story

The Veritas Forum is now equipped with “exploring the ideas that shape our lives,” a story that expresses their core mission to a variety of audiences in a concise and centralized way.

A refreshed brand identity

A new visual identity for The Veritas Forum supports the core story, provides flexibility as they engage various college campuses, and cultivates internal and external alignment.

Integrated marketing tools

The Veritas Forum is empowered with branding across media channels and key communication pieces, which presents a consistent experience wherever people engage them.

Strategy + Story Formation

A sense of invitation and community is central to Veritas Forum—so we sought to give voice to that in a brand story that animates their work.

Story

We developed a unique, signature theme for Momentum Weekend that simultaneously spoke to the overarching vision and the the real-time growth of the movement on the ground.

Visual Identity + Branding

With “Every home loved” as a cornerstone message in the brand, we focused on building it out with simple language and a visual tone that was low-pressure, friendly, and invitational. The outline of a home became a visual connection between the EncounterLife logo and the campaign vision.

Creative Direction

We simplified Vivo's existing color palette to the simplicity of black and white accented with a vibrant green. We introduced multiple typefaces and shapes to create a sense of playful imagination in the brand. Like the meals they create, Vivo's new brand led with a sense of creativity unleashed before-your-eyes. We also built momentum around the hashtag #tastepossibility and social media ads as they generated excitement for their grand reopening.

Logo + Visual Identity

Open Book created a new logo that embodies this refocused mission and story. Core to TreeHouse’s point of view is a belief that transformation is possible—and it happens from the inside out. So, we developed a logo that’s a nod to the growth rings of a tree, which develop over time, from the inside out. This rings also show the compounding impact of a transformed life on individuals, communities, and beyond.

Story

We worked with Riverbridge to flesh out the story that surrounds "invest with endurance." It was important to highlight both the optimism and specificity of their approach. Their lead messaging now elevates their belief that what is true endures⏤in investments, people, and companies. Both visually and narratively, we positioned Riverbridge as builders. In a world where people are not experiencing superior returns on their investments because of shortsighted behaviors, Riverbridge is on a mission to invest with endurance.

Visual Identity

We crafted a visual identity that represented the three-part strategy of new leaders, new churches, and new buildings—plus the most important part: YOU, represented by a red location pin. This was a strategic choice to underscore that Rise was about activating everyone into new service and outreach from right where they are. As a whole, the logo was also reminiscent of the four-square cross that had long been a feature at one of the Redeemer sites, as well as a grid of city blocks, since a neighborhood call to action was central to the campaign story.

Story

The story we developed focuses on the core idea that life is not meant to be a series of disconnected dots. At the modern university, the issue of living a divided life can feel like the norm for people who see themselves as both academics and Christians. Faith and academics are seen as parallel at best—and, at worst, in opposition, But Anselm House is inspired by the Scripture that says, “In Christ, all things hold together.” We helped Anselm give voice to their grounding mission: "to connect faith and knowledge with all of life."

Story

We helped Stony Brook crystallize that the kind of leadership vision they emphasize is the ability to "see beyond"—beyond information to application, beyond what's expedient to what is wise. Our storytelling captured Stony Brook's heart to raise up life-long learners who don’t just wait for answers but keep asking the right questions, leaders who transform information into insight, and citizens who approach their communities with eyes for the common good.

Photo + Video Direction

The Veritas Forum needed photography and video assets to evoke their commitment to the university and the life-shaping experiences of teachers and students. We first gave direction on imagery that could express community, generous dialogue, and a sense of place. We then traveled to the site of Veritas’ founding and the home of numerous university institutions working directly with staff and volunteers to capture video and photography on site. These choices give a grounding visual anchor for Veritas on the website and printed materials, and the imagery lives on as a resource for their work in the future.

Website

A new streamlined website leads with the story and provides clear pathways to the tools and resources EncounterLife offers. 

Website

We built a website that invites visitors directly into the opportunity to invest with endurance, providing clear and efficient pathways to key information. The new site is a clean and modern shift from their old site, while also providing flexibility to build upon as they customize messaging to core constituents in the individual, institutional, and retail channels they seek to serve. 

Website

We created a straightforward website that featured the different dimensions of Vivo—dining, catering, and gathering spaces. The platform features Vivo’s story and vision, as well as visually sets the table for what guests can expect.

Website

We created a robust Rise website that connected vision to action through streamlined content, photography, and resources. During the campaign, users also had a custom page where they could place a location pin, which allowed people to see engagement growing across the five boroughs of New York.

Website

We designed the new TreeHouse website to be equally relevant to donors, volunteers, teens, and community members. We aimed to build a site that was simple to navigate while clearly telling the story of what TreeHouse does and the invitation it makes.

Website

We created a new website to house their content, and to position Anselm House as not only a credible, academic resource for the University, but also as a community of prayer, shared meals, open discussions, and faithful presence.

Annual Report

Veritas’ annual report is a cornerstone communication touchpoint with partners and, for many, it was the first exposure to the new visual identity and brand story of the organization. We designed a visually rich 32-page book to re-introduce their vision and present their restructured program areas. The result was a galvanizing summary of the year that was well-received by the Veritas community, inspiring both alignment and shared excitement for the future.

Event Strategy + Execution

Open Book advocated for, and helped plan, a major kick-off event that generated 2,750 people in attendance. Attendees were not told that it was a launch event for a capital campaign, much less told the name Rise. Instead, we helped position it simple as an important night of vision-casting. Then, at the event, the Rise story, vision, video, and invitation were unveiled comprehensively. Nearly everyone in the room ended up walking forward that night to fill out a personal geo-marker card with their commitment to be part of the Rise campaign.

Live Messaging + Talking Points

We developed overall event messaging and talking points for the lead speakers and communicators of the New York Project team. This involved finding both succinct soundbites and effective narratives that reinforced the big-picture vision at play while also illuminating specific metrics and reporting.

Event Materials

EncounterLife decided used the new brand story as a launchpad for a state-wide event for Colorado churches. We worked with them to name the event "We Love Colorado" and developed materials and custom packaging to serve as invitational outreach tools.

Print Materials + Environmental Design

A restaurant needs a brand you can experience at every meal and every visit. We created menus, table signage, gift cards, and a 30-foot mural to surround the place in the feeling of possibility.

Video

One of the cornerstones of The Veritas Forum is the Forum Event—ongoing campus events that foster dialogue with prominent thinkers from different worldviews. We developed a script, captured footage, and designed motion graphics to create a 90-second video for them to show before every event. The goal is to reinforce a mindset they invite all attendees to share—one of humble curiosity and willingness to wrestle with ideas different than one’s own.

“Working with Open Book has surpassed all our hopes and expectations.

They know us so deeply, love our mission, team, and community as much as we do, and work so hard—literally around the clock—to help us tell our story and do our work better. Our community loves the work they've done for us. Team Open Book isn't just an incredible team—they're incredible people too.”

ANDREW SCHUMAN, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

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