casestudy

The Walrus

The Work
  • Strategy
  • Identity
  • Signage
  • Print

The Walrus

The Walrus got its start when Braveheart topped the box office, Seinfeld, ER and Home Improvement were top watched TV programs, and TLC was number one on the Billboard charts. The year was 1995.

The Walrus opened its doors in Arrowhead Shopping Plaza more than 20 years ago and occupies the same space today. From the beginning, The Walrus has been dedicated to people who enjoy prepared food in a fuss-free setting. They deliver big flavor in a small space inspiring intimate moments worth celebrating regularly.

The Walrus quickly became one of the top sought-out spaces in Bismarck. Diners included couples looking for a special dinner out on the town, business professionals hosting lunch clients, and legislators winding down a long day at the building near the state capitol.

Owner Jill  Sanford started her Walrus career as a server in 2009 to supplement her income as a music teacher. She jokingly suggested the original owner sell her the place, not expecting it to actually happen.

Today, the Walrus continues to follow through on the company’s mission of giving Bismarck-Mandan a place to pull up a chair, enjoy a flavorful meal, down a distinct draft beer, and be treated like family.

The Challenge

“I always forget about that place,” said the target audience of the Walrus. This is precisely the problem The Good Kids were made to solve. The Walrus started its brand transformation with an outdated logo, a delicious brand story that had not yet been told, and an interior design that needed a little TLC. Using these focal points, The Good Kids worked on a winning strategy for Walrus to reach the next generation of customers while continuing to foster their relationship with long-lasting loyal patrons. Ultimately, Walrus would need to lean into a solid brand guide so it can continue to serve diners for decades to come.

The Solutions

The Good Kids found two demographics to prioritize through survey results and market research. The first was young adults looking for an authentic place to go on a date or connect with friends. The second was married couples looking to celebrate all the small, intimate moments in a fuss-free setting. One thing was clear, people don’t go to the Walrus just to curb their hunger, they come for the experience. The Good Kids and Walrus focused on creating a kindred atmosphere that went above and beyond for every guest – making it the first choice for any date night or celebration.

The Good Kids conveyed Walrus’s enjoyable experience by finding a new color palette that is welcoming and fun, yet intimate and romantic. While keeping an art nouveau style, the design team updated the illustration of the walrus with a fresh, modernized logo icon. The Good Kids are also creating new menus for Walrus to display their quality options for an unmatched dining experience. Walrus is currently working with an interior design team to create an ambiance curated from its new brand kit where customers will feel welcomed, adventurous, and treated like royalty.

The Results

After working with The Good Kids, Walrus has an improved color palette, updated logo and signage, modernized menu graphics and fonts, and thoughtful interior design to collectively reflect its new visual brand identity. It’s now even more clear what sets Walrus apart from the competition. It’s the only full-service restaurant in Bismarck that embraces fun with every experience, making it the first choice for residents dining out and a must-stop for travelers. With their new brand kit and always reliable customer service, you’ll now hear their audience insist, “Let’s celebrate at the Walrus!”

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