Don't Panic

the hitchhiker’s guide to our company’s brand

 

Don't Forget your Towel.

Table of Contents

Yeah, you can use the dots at the right. But you want to see everything at a glance, don’t you? Here it is.

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Dive into the world and brand of Nexom.

This company that you and I work for is special. We are a passionate, diverse group of people that cares about the world, cares about doing great work, and takes special care of one another. The point of the brand—and by extension, this guide—is to help outsiders understand what we already know: how special this group of people we call Nexom really is.

 

The best way to grow our business is to tell others what’s special about us in a clear and consistent manner,

and to help you, we’ve specifically designed some brand tools that are introduced in this guide. Oh, and you don’t need to have read The Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy; with apologies to Douglas Adams, there aren’t any further Vogon poetry-quality references written into this guide.

 
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What do we say when people ask

“So, what does Nexom do?”

We give them Our Brand Statement:

“The wastewater industry has seen how nutrients and energy costs expose the limits of existing solutions. Nexom design-supports and supplies the next wave of proven technologies helping consulting engineers confidently exceed all municipal or industrial demands.”

Our brand Story

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When you get asked what your company does, what do you say?

The best brands tell a story about how their customer had a problem, and how you came alongside them to assist as they solved it. If there’s one thing you take away from this entire book, memorize the two sentences above. You are a brand ambassador, and that story is how we want to be remembered. Of course, there’s a long version of this using all the classic story elements, and it starts with our hero...

 
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Our hero…

Municipalities are key, but consulting engineers most influence whether we get a project.

What do they want? Like most professionals, these engineers want to do a good job, avoid frustrations, and move up in the world.

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Has a Problem…

If we want to provide a solution, we must understand all levels of their problem.

Their external problem: The engineer needs an ammonia/nutrient removal solution.

Their internal problem: They need to move the project forward to please the boss.

Their philosophical problem: They desire recognition and admiration as an excellent engineer.

 
 
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meets a guide who understands their fear…

We must show we care and are credible.

We have empathy: We get that projects can move frustratingly slo-o-owly.

We have authority: Testimonials from fellow engineers and our data from full-scale facilities shows we can be trusted.

 
 
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and gives them a plan…

We lay out in simple steps a pleasant process of doing business with us, to make it easy for engineers to move forward confidently.

  1. Submit the RFP info.

  2. Receive final design-ready drawings.

  3. Never worry about nutrient limits again.

 
 
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calling them to action…

Giving the hero a useful next step that moves the project forward.

Direct Call-to-Action: The “Submit your RFP” website button (or similar invitation in an ad) lead to tangible progress on a project without us having to do anything.

Indirect Calls-to-Action: Useful for those not ready to move forward, these can include offering valued content (in exchange for an email address for follow-up), inviting them to a presentation (either webinar or in-person), or the ol’ Contact Us button.

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that leads to success!

We fulfil our promises of moving the project forward, the project is green-lit, the engineer has a great experience working with us, and we gain an evangelist while helping them to climb into a role with more influence.

 
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that leads
to failure.

The process falls apart, expectations aren’t met, and the consulting engineer moves on. Chances are we won’t get another shot with that engineer any time soon.

Who are we?

Our Brand Story helps us explain where we fit—we are the guide!—and what we do as part of our everyday interactions.

But who we are at a deeper level speaks to our mission, vision and our core values.

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What’s our dream for the world that our company exists to realize?

OUr Vision:

For every drop of wastewater in North America to meet the highest nutrient standards at the lowest possible energy footprint.

 

What do we do to turn that dream into reality?

Our Mission:

We ensure all wastewater plant operators sleep easy at night through a relentless commitment to proven innovation, best-in-class employees and customer service.

 

What is different about our company that makes us uniquely capable of achieving our mission?

Our Core Values

 
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At Nexom, We Believe in

Doing what we say

What do a good jumpshot, perfect golf swing, and Nexom’s success have in common? It’s all about following through. This is about so much more than honesty. We’ve built a reputation for reliability and earned the trust of engineers, regulators, and operators by supplying technologies that do what they’re designed to, and by our people routinely overdelivering on our promises.

 

Known as “Honest Abe,” Abraham Lincoln was said to have once walked three miles to return six cents to a customer he had accidentally overcharged. As President, he committed to freeing the slaves and led the North to victory in the Civil War to become the Great Emancipator.

 
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At Nexom, We Believe in

Seeing through clients’ eyes

It’s important to keep things in perspective. But to us, it’s equally important to choose the right perspective. Many companies consider themselves “client-focused,” but that’s inherently a reactionary position. Instead, we proactively choose our actions based on our clients’ points of view. We anticipate what matters to them, communicate with clarity and listen well. We are here for our clients as a guide they trust.

 

Before he became the first black justice on the U.S. Supreme Court in 1967, Thurgood Marshall was a lawyer defending thousands of black people deprived of their basic rights in the South in the ‘30s through the ‘60s. “In recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings,” he said, “we pay ourselves the highest tribute.”

 
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At Nexom, We Believe in

Relentlessly doing little things right

Details are like surgery. The only minor ones are the ones that don’t affect us. If we were forecasting weather, we could afford to be wrong 30% of the time; instead, clients need us to be 100% right. Since even big jobs and corporate decisions are just collections of tiny details, we win by tirelessly getting each one right.

 

The man who led Apple in re-inventing personal computers, smartphones, and more, Steve Jobs was notorious for his attention to detail; he was fascinated by the subtleties of typefaces, and he famously threatened the first iPhone’s launch by insisting it have no visible screws.

 
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At Nexom, we Believe in

No egos. No silos.

They may not have WHMIS labels, but we’ve banned these toxic substances. Nothing chokes personal growth like egos or workplaces like silos. Both isolating impulses stem from a fear of being overlooked and a desire to be needed. We embrace humility and collaboration to become better people and grow Nexom so we can all be seen and valued.

 
 

Mahatma Gandhi led India through decades of non-violent civil disobedience to gain its independence from Britain. An example of humility and humanity, he said “the best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”

 
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At Nexom, we believe in

Family

We care about each other at work and our families at home, whether that includes ten kids, one goldfish, or neither. What does it mean for us to be family? It’s not to replace our home lives; quite the opposite! Rather, we legitimately care about our coworkers and our families (as varied as our situations away from work can be!). And we all take responsibility for keeping each other safe and healthy, and making this place a source of happiness, growth and fulfillment, because that’s what families do!

 

“The biggest disease today is not leprosy or tuberculosis, but rather the feeling of being unwanted.” So said Mother Teresa, who comforted millions of dying people in Calcutta and beyond and was officially made a Saint in 2016. “Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.”

 
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Where the “Nexom” name comes from

 

The Truth

 

In 2015, Tom Pokorsky was traveling through Greece when he came across a strange temple on a the Aliakmonas Potamos river south of Thessaloniki. Exploring among the temple’s columns, he came upon a large pool of water, in the center of which was a stone throne upon which sat a fierce-looking woman in an intensely-green dress but otherwise dressed for an ancient battle.

Tom thought his wife or his guides were pranking him—until the lady spoke.

“Hello, Tom. I am Nexom, the Goddess of Nutrients, born of the unholy union of Demeter, Goddess of the Harvest, and Poseidon, God of the Sea. I have for you a great quest. Every day, nutrients spill out of your continent’s wastewater plants to destroy waterways, lakes, and oceans. Heroic engineers are striving to stem this flow, but they need a guide to equip them for this Herculean task.”

She rose. Her raised sword crackled with energy. “Summon an army in my name,” she ordered. “Build tools to defeat nutrients, and I’ll see to your success.”

In a flash, she was gone, but Tom knew what he had to do. He grabbed his phone: “Georgiann, make an appointment with my doctor to review my dosages. But hang on; get me XPV first. We’ve got to get a team together.”

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Where the “Nexom” name comes from

 

What we tell people so they don’t think we’re crazy

 

Nexom proper noun | nex·um | \'nex- m\

  1. A made-up name derived from the term “nexus” which suggests the “centre” or “focus,” as well as a “connected series or group,” much in the same way Nexom’s technologies are the focus of a connected series.

  2. A word that conveniently includes the initials of “Nelson Environmental” and the first initial of “XPV”

 

What’s the right way to pronounce “Nexom”?

 
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NECK-sum

 
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nex-SAWM

There is no “Da Vinci Code” hidden its artwork, but

Our Logo

was designed to evoke specific feelings and ideas. It also comes in many forms to suit a variety of purposes.

 
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Variations

Our logo comes in many forms, distinguished by variables like the ones below. Ask Marketing for the version you should use.

Colour

On white (or light solid colours):

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On Nexom Blue*:

On dark or patterned colours:

Tagline

Where the logo is >1.5” wide (in normal applications) and viewers may not know Nexom, we use our tagline:

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Where the logo is too small for the tagline to be clear or viewers would know us, we use no tagline:

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Media

On screens, we use widely-supported formats like JPEG or PNG that are pixel-based which, magnified, looks like:

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In print, we use specialized files like EPS that use geometry to define outlines so the logo is sharp at high resolutions:

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Language

In English, we use:

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En français, nous utilisons:

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It is all of our jobs to responsibly use and—when called upon—protect our family crest.

Logo Usage Guidelines

Clear space requirement

To avoid crowding our logo, keep it an “m” clear of any other elements.

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Epic Logo fails

Logo misuse and mistreatment is common, but thankfully we have our crack team of brand ambassadors keeping a watchful eye out (hint-hint, we mean you).

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Keep it on the level:

Rotating the logo is a no-no.

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Effects-free:

Don’t let effects (shadows, bevels, glows, etc.) be added to our logo,

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Even if they think it fits better:

Always ensure the logo is proportionate.

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De-logo that photo:

Make sure the logo is always on solid-coloured background.

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Recolour no logo:

Sorry if it doesn’t match your favourite team’s colours.

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Don’t let them recreate it:

There’s no substitute for the real thing.

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Don’t change the text:

Unless it’s “N-E-X-O-M” it’s not “O-K” with us.

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Repetition is not key:

The logo should not be a repeating pattern or wallpaper.

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® every time:

The ® symbol protects the logo, so we protect the ® symbol.

Our Brand Names

Biological

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optAER® Fine-Bubble
Lagoon Aeration

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SAGR® Cold-Water
Post-Lagoon Nitrification

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BioPortz™ Moving Bed
Biofilm Reactor

Filtration

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infini-D™ Zero-Downtime
Cloth Disk Filter

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Blue Nite®
Biological Denitrification

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Blue PRO® Reactive Filtration
for Phosphorus & Metals

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EcoBELT™ Rotating
Belt Filtration

Please note: Apart from infini-D™, descriptions do not constitute part of the brand name.

 

It’s easy to properly represent Nexom in documents and presentations.
Just trust our

Templates

 

Microsoft Word® Letterhead

Microsoft PowerPoint® Presentations

Where should I save the templates? You should drop them into your Documents\Custom Office Templates folder.

How do I access them in Word/PowerPoint? In either program, hit File>New, and you should find our templates under the Personal tab of the templates that come up.

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Our Word Letterhead Template, Explained

First Page

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  1. First Page Top Margin: 1.82” from the top edge (or 0.5” plus 4 lines with 12 pt spacing) because we protect the elbow room of our logo.
  2. Address Dot: Position the top-left corner of the address here so it fits in the window of our envelopes.
  3. Fold Line: Fold the letterhead at this point (and the rest behind it) so the address fits in the window of our envelopes (and so the whole document fits in the envelope, period).
  4. Styles: Our Word letterhead templates have Styles & Formatting built in for headers, body text, etc. to draw attention to key points and maintain consistency.
  5. Margins: 1.15” left and right, and 1.65” from the bottom.

Subsequent Pages

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  1. Subsequent Page Top Margin: 1.15" from the top edge. (Other margins are identical to the first page.)
  2. Footer: Enter your document's title and author to remind readers (and help reassemble documents that get mixed up).
  3. Automatic Page Numbers: No need to enter anything here!
 

FAQ

Q. The letterhead is splitting my content onto more pages. Can I adjust the margins, paragraph spacing, or font sizing of the letterhead a little?

A. No, and it’s not just because we want things to look good.

It’s about being easy to understand and simple to work with, a reputation built slowly that can be ruined quickly.

Think about Apple. They have a reputation for simplicity. White backgrounds with a few words of black text. A phone with one button. Or Google: a whole webpage with one search field and two buttons. It would just take one incomprehensible ad or product to lose that reputation.

Even if they don’t know it, the person receiving your document cares about formatting, because it makes reading easier. And we care because it helps communicate that we value simplicity, that we are the easiest to work with.


Our PowerPoint Template, Explained

First Slide

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  1. Background Colour: The blue lightens to Nexom Blue in the middle reminiscent of the effect a projector’s bulb has on a screen, and to remind us to focus content in the middle.
  2. Title: You only have three lines, which is intentional to force us to devise a concise, simple title.
  3. Subtitle: Here is where you can include an addendum to your title, the presenter name, and the date.
  4. 60-40 Split: To emphasize what we want people to recall, we allocate disproportionate space to key points.

Subsequent Slides

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  1. Slide Title: Limited to two lines, this is the key piece of information on the slide.
  2. Body Content: Use brief phrases that focus listeners on what you are saying. Full sentences are distracting, and if you read them they become redundant.
  3. Defend the Logo: The white curve-backed Nexom logo is on every slide. Ensure that neither text nor images overlap the curve.
 

FAQs

Q. The template text is too large. Can I adjust it?

A. Oof, the marketing team just cringed. For the reasons discussed in the letterhead FAQ above, but also more, please resist the urge!

Sitting sixteen inches from your computer screen, it’s exceedingly easy to read fonts as small as 10 points. But when you’re delivering a presentation in a massive hall with a decades-old projector on its last legs shining onto a screen much too small for the room (if you’re lucky enough to get a screen), you’ll wish the standard template text was twice as big.

Rule of thumb: People who win at presentations never have to apologize to the back of the room because they can’t read what’s on the slide. (This is also why we discourage putting tables of data on slides.)

Q. Do we have to create our slides from scratch?

A. Good news! Over the course of more than five years, Nexom has been refining its presentations and the Marketing team has retained the slides that work best.

If you need to deliver a presentation about Nexom, let Marketing know, and chances are they’ll have the slides already to meet your specific PowerPoint needs.


Our Business Cards, Explained

Front Side

  1. Name: Sized to maximize use of space to the right of the white curve to promote name readability and retention, while also sliding slightly behind the white curve to focus attention on Nexom.
  2. Designation & Title: Graduate degrees and/or designations releveant to the position appear in Nexom Green, with the individual's official title in white.
  3. Email & Phone Number: Our most direct, relevant contact information takes precedence.
  4. Office Contact Info: Mailing address and office line, as well as the standard Nexom URL.

Back Side

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  1. Logo: With tagline, as per our logo guidelines.
  2. Corners: A mix of curves and sharp corners, evoking the logo.
 

FAQ

Q. I’ve run out of business cards! Help!

Q. My information has changed. How do I get new business cards?

Q. I started six months ago. Can I have business cards?

A. Because every Nexom employee can be called upon to represent the company at a moment’s notice, we feel it important that every Nexom employee have access to up-to-date business cards. If you don’t have them, contact Marketing!


OUr Email Signatures, Explained

Full Signature

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  1. Logo: Presented without tagline, given that our logo is too small in the space alotted by an email signature to allow for what would be the tiny text of a tagline.
  2. Name: Uses the email signature-sized equivalent of our title font.
  3. Designation & Title: As on the business card, graduate degrees and/or relevant designations are in green, with the individual's title in blue.
  1. Email & Phone Number: Let's keep the focus on the ways people want to contact us anyway.
  2. Office Contact & URL: Refers to the individual's office, toll-free number, and the company URL for those looking to reach out in other ways.
  3. Promotional Tag: This space is reserved for communicating a positive message about our company, linking to a story on our website.

Reply Signature

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  1. Smaller Logo: Again, presented without tagline, but shrunk down to save space.
  2. Name: Remains the same size, since this is literally the point of the signature.
  1. Phone Number & Email: All on one line, saving height.
  2. URL: Occasionally replies will still end up in the hands of people who don't know us; highlighting the URL ensures they have a way to follow up on us.
 

FAQ

Q. Why are there separate Full and Reply signatures?

A. By popular demand, Nexom’s provided our team with both, because we recognize that, although we’ve worked hard to represent our brand in a compact space, the Full Signature still takes up a few lines. When you’re emailing back and forth internally, or sending a response to someone externally who knows us well, scrolling past the full signature becomes tiresome (and can eat up an extra page when printed).

The reply signature is more compact, less intrusive, and still gives the key information for quick access to those who might need it.

Q. I’m emailing a response to someone who doesn’t know us well; how do I switch signatures?

A. Microsoft Outlook on a desktop provides an easy answer: in your draft email, simply right-click the signature itself, and you get an option to switch between the Full or Reply signature.

Fonts &
Typefaces

We do our brand a big favour when we stay consistent with the words we write, including in terms of how the words look. Those both inside and outside our organization can instantly recognize our documents by not just the medium they’re printed on, but also our distinctive Titillium typeface, displayed in large green letters as a title or in rich blue letters as headings.

 
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Title

BASIC

Typeface: Titillium Web Bold.
Color: Nexom Green.
Size: 48 pts.
Case: All caps.

ADVANCED

Tracking: -65 thousandths of an em.
Paragraph Spacing: 30 pts before; 12 pts after.
Leading: 75% of size.

Heading 1

BASIC

Typeface: Titillium Web Bold.
Color: Nexom Blue (or white on Nexom Blue).
Size: 26 pts.
Case: Normal.

ADVANCED

Paragraph Spacing: 18 pts before; 12 pts after.
Leading: 85% of size.

Heading 2

BASIC

Typeface: Titillium Web Light.
Color: Nexom Blue (or white on Nexom Blue).
Size: 20 pts.
Case: Normal.

ADVANCED

Paragraph Spacing: 12 pts before; 12 pts after.
Leading: 85% of size.

Body Text

BASIC

Typeface: Helvetica Neue Condensed (alternately, Arial).
Color: Dark Gray (or white on dark colours).
Size: 11 pts.
Case: Normal.

ADVANCED

Paragraph Spacing: 12 pts before; 12 pts after.
Leading: 115% of size.



 

Colours

 
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Colour Swatch Legend

  1. Colour Representation: How it shows up on your screen may vary, but this is the best we can do to show you what it looks like.

  2. Colour Name: We’ve started off on a pair of pretty self-explanatory categories.

  3. Pantone Coated: A color defined as a ratio of inks that professional printers mix, for use on paper that is coated so ink sits on the surface.

  4. Pantone Uncoated: Another ratio of inks, optimized to replicate the color on uncoated paper that absorbs ink.

  5. RGB: For screens like TVs, computers and phones. Colors are additive light, meaning you start at zero with no light (black) and add amounts (on a scale of 0 to 255) of Red, Green, and Blue colored light to create colors, to a maximum of white.

  6. CMYK: For home and office printers. Colors are subtractive, meaning you presumably start at zero with white paper and add a volume (on a scale of 0% to 100%) of Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and “Ketone” (Black) ink or toner to create colors.

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Primary Colour Palette

These are the colours we want to make famous. They’re the colours in our logo, they’re the ones we want people to see and think “Nexom.”

 
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Nexom Blue

534C / 295U
R:31 G:53 B:94
C85-M68-Y34-K17

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Nexom Green

377C / 390U
R:121 G:154 B:0
C58-M22-Y100-K4

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Dark Gray

426C / Black 6U
R:53 G:55 B:57
C5-M0-Y0-K93

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White


R:255 G:255 B:255
C0-M0-Y0-K0


 

Secondary COlour Palette

Sometimes you need more than four colours. While we prioritize the above primary palette, this secondary palette has been chosen to complement our primary colours and give us a defined range of options to use that look intentional and professional. (You might recognize a few of them as being associated with some of our Core Values.)

Dark

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Ferric Red

7618C / 173U
R:225 G:100 B:75
C17-M72-Y75-K4

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Tubbs Hill Turquoise

5477C / 330U
R:75 G:100 B:100
C72-M48-Y53-K23

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Idaho Mountain Purple

7662C / 2612U
R:125 G:75 B:125
C57-M81-Y24-K6

Mid

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High-Vis Orange

715C / 130U
R:250 G:150 B:50
C0-M49-Y90-K0

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Cedar Creek Blue

7682C / 7682U
R:125 G:150 B:200
C53-M35-Y2-K0

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Manitoba Clay Gray

Cool Gray 9C / 425U
R:125 G:125 B:125
C0-M0-Y0-K63

Light

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Citronelle Yellow

120C / 603U
R:250 G:225 B:100
C3-M7-Y73-K0

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Blumenort Green

7486C / 365U
R:200 G:225 B:150
C24-M0-Y52-K0

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Pokorsky Silver

420C / Cool Gray 2U
R:200 G:200 B:200
C0-M0-Y0-K25