The Rebrand

Problem: How do we take an existing business and elevate their brand, web presence, and social media that has become outdated. River's End Bookstore is a small independently owned bookstore in Oswego, NY, they face steep competition for large chains like Barnes & Noble. 

My Solution: Use River's End Bookstore's relationship with the local community to emphasize their strengths that set them apart from bigger chains. Their friendly readily available staff makes their customers feel at home along with their community events and involvement. By highlighting these things on their social media and website they can potentially gain new customers from the nearby SUNY school and seasonal visitors. 

This rebranding project is part of the Branding & Identity class (VCD 732) at Rochester Institute of Technology. This project is academic and the business "the river's end  bookstore" retains all rights to their business and brand. The goal is to give a per-existing business a fresh look along with a website and social media redesign. 

Photos of store taken by me; photos used in the website and of the employees acquired form "the river's end bookstore" website

Logo created in Adobe Illustrator; Website created in Adobe  XD; Social media post built in Adobe Illustrator, mockups built in Figma; Website animation created in Adobe After Effects. Product mockups edited in Adobe Photoshop; Bookmark mockup created in Maxon Cinema 4D

Original Word Mark

The original word mark is lacking personality or that special something seen in their competitors' logos/word marks

New Word Mark/Logo

Original Website

There is no style, hard to navigate, and no hierarchy; book covers are too small

Competitors' Websites

Easy to order online and find what you are looking for, organized and branded 

Book covers are displayed front and center and organized; brands are clearly identifiable and styled consistently

Website Redesign

Original Social Media

Too much stock marketing; lacking pictures of people; inconsistent styling

Competitors' Social Media 

Utilizes photos of people; photographs of the store and books; uses branding consistent with their website 

Social Media Redesign

Introduced the addition of photos of people; highlighted their staff, events, and promotions; emphasized  books available in store

Original Newsletter Cover

Newsletter Cover Redesign

Additional Marketing Materials


Inspiration was gained from the local lighthouse on Ontario Lake, right down the street from River's End Bookstore. These are actual photos of the lighthouse and they really showcase the charm of the port city. Along with that I looked at how other logos were designed featuring a lighthouse. Eventually the word mark evolved into using a typeface the embodied the classic nautical essence and history of Oswego.