It look's great, but what do I do with it? What is branding? What's all this stuff for? Brand design is more than just a logo. There are many supporting elements that help reflect not only how your brand looks, but how it feels as a whole. This includes the use of color, typography, language, textures, patterns, photography, etc. Brand design is what brings your brand to life and what makes it cohesive, memorable, and trustworthy to your ideal customers. Customers prefer to buy from brands they recognize. The best way to build brand recognition is to apply your brand attributes to all of your collateral consistently. Read on for a quick guide on how to use your new brand assets!
1. Brand Adjectives
To set the tone, brand adjectives are used to define your brand personality, values, and aesthetic. How your business will be portrayed visually, and how you will communicate with your customers. For example: Playful or serious? Quirky or straight-to-the-point? Fun or functional? Trendy or classic? Affordable or luxury? etc. Your brand adjectives should speak to your target audience and visual aesthetic.
A moodboard is a collection of images that sets the tone and direction of your brand both visually and emotionally. Your brand adjectives should be portrayed in your moodboard. When you look at your moodboard it should make you feel the way you want your customers to feel when they interact with your brand. Your moodboard is the last step of the brand strategy stage before moving onto the rest of the design. It's important to nail this so it can be referenced throughout the entire brand design process and beyond. It will set the tone for your colour palette, photography style, and the look and feel of your brand.
3. Colour Palette
Brand colours will end up being one of your most memorable brand attributes. Your brand colours should be chosen to help communicate your brand personality while helping to create a visually appealing atmosphere to house your message. You want to ensure you use your brand colours consistently on all of your marketing and brand collateral. For example: Business cards and stationery, social media graphics, signage, promo pieces, etc. You should also keep these colours in mind if you are going to have a brand photo shoot. Your clothing, background, props, etc. can all help you stay 'on brand' and contribute to your brand recognition.
4. Brand Fonts
As with your brand colours, your brand fonts should be chosen strategically to help portray your brand personality and aesthetic. It's important that your fonts are used in a consistent manner and applied to all of your collateral the same as your colours. All of my branding clients are provided with an example of how to use their fonts as they were intended. For example: Headline font, subheading font, body font, and accent font.
5. Logo & Alternate Logo(s)
It's important to have multiple versions of your logo to allow for optimal scalability. While you want to use your main logo in most cases, sometimes it's necessary to use an alternate version based on the platform, size, or shape of your brand piece. This may be a simplified or expanded version, stacked or horizontal version, circle version or an icon. Sometimes all of the above! Think about what will fit better, a vertical or horizontal version of your logo? What size will it be seen at, would your main logo need to be scaled down to much to fit? With multiple versions of your logo, you can ensure your brand presence will not be compromised.
6. Patterns & Textures
Brand patterns and textures are excellent extensions of your brand. They contribute to brand recognition and help to create visual interest and diversity in the design of your brand collateral. They can be used on almost anything if done right. For example: As backgrounds or borders on social media posts and websites, on business cards and stationery, packaging design, documents and presentations, etc.
Icons are small simple graphic elements used to help you communicate visually. They can represent different aspects of your business, help categorize, or help portray your brand values. Brand icons help with brand recognition and allow you to communicate your message faster in a visually appealing way. You can use them in places like your social media graphics, highlight covers on Instagram, website, or on print materials.
Check out some of the branding packages I have done for examples of how all these elements come to together to create a cohesive look for your brand with versatility.
Thanks for following along! - Hailey