The internet changed everything, it changed how brands work, interact, compete and even the very nature of their existence. No serious businesses in this time and age can ignore the fundamental impact of the digital space. And neither can designers.
Brand development encompasses a number of different facets, our focus in this article will be on the visual part of the process. Most often than not the design process focuses on the tangible, what can be seen and doesn’t take into account the digital space in which the brand will live. It comes easy to us to envision how a logo will look on a business card but how will it look on a V-card? How will it work, will the same design layout used in the print design work on an electronic version? Let’s explore some aspects of how we as designers can help our clients design and build brands that thrive in the digital space.
Digital Brand Collateral
A great place to start would be to think of the digital brand collateral your client might need. We found that most of our clients who use emails a lot as a means of correspondence or marketing tended to request for email signatures or V-cards. When designing always try to think ahead and identify what kind of digital collateral that your client might need.
Responsive Logo design
The digital space has created a divergent range of touch points for brands. From 4K desktop screens to 360px mobile phones brands need to be more careful and aware of how their clients interact with them. Responsive Logo design helps businesses construct brands that adapt to multiple devices and screen resolutions. The concept borrows from responsive web design. It takes away various logo details in relation to screen size while at the same type maintaining brand fidelity. Its important for designers to help their clients understand that their logo will have multiple touch points which must all be taken into account.
Understanding color is critical to the success of a brand. Color affects client psychology, perception and user experience. Colors can help clarify messaging and communication or they can confuse it. It is important therefore that brands take the time to build comprehensive color systems that cover both offline and online media. A key point to consider is how you can use color to better structure information architecture, build hierarchy or even a notification system. This color principle will be adopted in website builds, app development etc. all to give clients a comprehensive User Experience.
Visual patterns help brands develop a visual language. This patterns are important in a host of applications like packaging, product assets and communications. Visual patterns help reinforce brand association. With the help of a creative team, a brand should seek to develop a consistent and adaptive visual pattern that can reinforce the brand wherever possible. Visual patterns can also be extended to include iconography which is important especially where the brand deals in digital goods.
Video has taken over the world especially in the social media space. In addition, a lot of brands are dishing out content which most of the time is in the form of videos. Brands are shifting their marketing efforts more towards owned media than paid media. Its therefore important to design with this reality in mind. The brand design should take into account the dynamics of how the logo can be animated, how it will look and work on intros (think YouTube) and how it will be placed on video content.
This would by default the most important consideration but it still is relegated to the realms of afterthought. Every brand and brand designer should take into consideration how the mark will work on the company’s website, social media assets, landing pages, apps and newsletters. This ties in with the responsive nature of your logo, how well or how hard is it for the mark to adapt.
Its therefore important for teams or individuals involved in visual brand building to take into consideration how the brand will live and thrive in the digital realm. Hope this article sheds some light and do share any additions or observations.