This Tampa Startup Consulting Company Makes Some FIRE For Veterans!

When Firewatch Magazine was searching for a website company in Tampa, Florida, we were excited to get the call. Let’s dive into this project and see how we created everything. We will take you through the idea, analysis of everything, how we provided solutions, and the result of the process. Startup Street prides itself on a transparent and inclusive process, with an easy-to-understand formula of onboarding, development, and offboarding. Keeping things organized is key to running an efficient website company, and we pride ourselves on delivering on this promise consistently. If you’re in need of a Tampa website company, you know where to find us!

The Idea

Steve Roderick is a staunch supporter of veteran causes, so when he met up with Toni Hedstrom of Veteran Approved Network (VAN),  the two saw an opportunity to take a current project to the next level.  VAN was currently producing events, meetings and monthly magazines to help further veteran causes.  The two put their heads together, and Firewatch Magazine was born.


Firewatch was referred to Startup Street in need of a total brand makeover and a gameplan on what kind of content to move forward with, along with a roadmap of how to achieve it..  The magazine also needed a total brand makeover, including a new brandvoice, website, logo and magazine design guidelines. 

While diving in on the concept of a media company that would resonate with the post-911 veteran crowd, a vibe along the lines of “Men’s Health with a touch of Maxim, geared towards the modern veteran community”, was established as a baseline for the project, a visionary guide to help the process along the way. 

Items to Tackle:

  • Brand
  • Logo
  • Website
  • Magazine Design
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Content Strategy

The Solutions

Color Palette and Fonts:  When designing for “the modern vet”, something was needed that was not a complete re-creation of active duty military life, but a representation of the optimism and determination of post-active duty life for veterans of the post-2000 era, while still incorporating a military feel.   

The orange and sand earth tones worked well, with a font that was bold yet modern.  The colors are similar enough to military life without being overbearing and too obvious, and the font is bold enough to work without going full “stenciled” look that is all too common for military-themed brands. 

Firewatch Logo:  Startup Street developed a modern take on the classic ‘crosshairs/optics’ graphics of years past, for a logo that is bold yet modern, and ties in military life without being obvious. .  By going square as opposed to circular, we added some edge to the look and feel.  The logo represents the word “Firewatch” well, as those on firewatch have the sole duty of keeping a lookout on things while others sleep. 

Brand Voice:  The brand voice was based off of the previous concept of  “Men’s Health with a touch of Maxim, geared towards the modern veteran community”.  The brand would be light and approachable, yet professional, focused on education and empowerment, speaking to the veteran demographic that is typically in the 25-45 age range while still appealing to those who are younger/older.  Topics of ongoing discussion would include lifestyle, gear/products, health, wellness and fitness. 

The following acronym was created based on F.I.R.E. to help solidify the brand:

Focused:  Firewatch readers are focused, set goals and stick to them.  They see things through with determination and pride.

Inspired:  Proud of their past and looking forward to the future, Firewatch readers embrace all that life has to provide and make the most of every day, in tribute to those who cannot. 

Resilient: Life isn’t fair and Firewatch readers don’t just understand that, they EMBRACE it, overcoming any challenge that life presents.  

Empowered: Creating a positive impact on those around us is key to Firewatch readers, they were this opportunity as a badge of honor.

Note: It’s not uncommon for brand voice to change as the startup launches and the company becomes more defined in it’s mission. That being said, creating a definitive starting point is a solid step in the right direction, and assures that the brand mission will be a focus moving forward.

Website:  The website was developed to be bold yet modern, and drive home the brand as best as possible while not sacrificing functionality needed in a typical website (easy to filter categories, easy menu navigation, appropriate call-to-actions for advertisers, etc).  The homepage was developed with content prioritization in mind, featuring Most Recent articles first, followed by Most Popular and then followed up with some base categories for users to choose from. 

Startup Street built the website with the understanding that the Firewatch team will need to load up new content frequently.  Ease of operation on the backend was paramount, and Startup Street also provided the needed educational videos to help the Firewatch crew if needed.

Note: The balance between brand and functionality is a delicate one. Some projects allow for more of a visionary feel for their website, while others need to get straight to business. Understanding this relationship is something that Startup Street excels at. Learn more about our website process here: THE PROCESS

Content/Marketing Strategy:  Magazines are dependent on quality of content, which is determined by three main aspects; copywriting, graphic design/photography and star power (quality of the interviewee). 

Startup Street devised a plan that would generate the appropriate star power, created design templates to work from, and developed a marketing strategy based on influencers and events that would (by plan) help to streamline the interview and content process as well.

Note: It’s important when devising marketing plans that the operational logistics and capabilities of the organization are not only taken into consideration, but prioritized. All too often, startups and companies sign onto plans that are too tedious, too demanding or too complex to execute them properly. Running the company should always be paramount, with the marketing plan fitting into a larger strategy.

The Results

Startup Street is extremely proud of how this project developed, and grateful to the team at Firewatch for trusting us to bring their vision into reality.   Firewatch has a strong brand to build from, a great user experience platform online and a solid game plan on how to grow the company moving forward.

Startup Consulting

Do you have an idea for a business and are in need of some startup consulting to get it up off the ground?  Startup Street is here to provide a helping hand, providing you the coaching, business plans and/or pitch decks that you need to hit the ground running. 

If your company has been doing well, and you feel that it’s time to take your online presence to the next level, feel to reach out and let’s see what’s possible! Feel free to email us at or schedule your free consultation below by contacting us.

Share This Post:

It's a perfect match



Enjoy this project article?

Explore More Goodies!

We love showing you all the in’s and out’s of working with our clients! Read up below on some other happenings and projects that we have taken on here at Startup Street.

Skip to content