Rebranding the Leader in the Cannabis Beverage Category

Keef is one of the oldest brands in the cannabis category.  Born in Boulder, CO in 2010, Keef grew and expanded organically over the next ten years, opening bottling lines for cannabis beverages in seven states.

In anticipation of further expansion in the California market and beyond, the Keef team decided it was time to re-think the brand platform and design system. This was our assignment and challenge.

To rebrand Keef, we started by redefining the brand’s narrative and its voice. We determined that beverage was the most socially acceptable way to consume cannabis, and the least stigmatic way to celebrate. “Add some elevation to celebration” became the rallying cry and strategy line that informed our brief.

Next, after several rounds of iteration, we hand-lettered the perfect logo, typeface and style for the brand system, and developed bespoke artwork packaging that was rolled out across four lines of beverages, as well as the Keef vape products.

The Original Logo

Although Keef’s original logo worked well as a badge on clothing and swag, and was recognizable, especially in Colorado, the team felt that it did not reflect the fun personality of the Keef brand. There were also some readability issues that we needed to solve.

Our New Logo

After a few rounds and many variations of logo designs, a clear winner emerged. This new logo is prominent on the shelves and legible from behind the counter and across the room. The design’s flowing curves give the logo the inherently fun and happy feeling we were striving for.

Package Design & Illustration

We sought to develop a brand system, through color, design and original illustration, that would be extensible enough hold together the entire Keef product catalog — including both beverage and vape.

Original Concept Illustration

Final Label Example

Beverage Line Redesign

Once we landed on a brand system through color and illustration style, we extended it across all four lines of cannabis-infused beverages. For beverage, most states require an opaque can or bottle, so we needed to capture the flavor and personality of the beverage through illustration and color.  For example, the classic soda line utilizes bright colors and bold imagery, while the flavored seltzers showcase muted colors and softer imagery. All of the packaging artwork is original and hand-illustrated.

Ancillary Product Design

In addition to the cannabis-infused beverage product lines, we extended the brand system to CBD beverages, oils and vape products.

Website

We used our freshly-minted style guide and new visual identity to craft a shiny new Shopify website at keefbrands.com.

"The team at Essential Good killed it.  They far exceeded our expectations and we cannot thank them enough for everything they did to level up our brand."

-- Erik Knutson, Founder & CEO of Keef Brands