More than meets the eye
For over 25 years, New Story has been evolving from a traditional advertising agency into a full-fledged digital agency that provides services designed to drive sustainable growth. One of the key factors in achieving this growth is through the power of brand design. In today's digital era, what is the purpose of brand design? What does it take to develop one? And why is it essential to design digital-first?
The purpose of brand design
Brand design is the process of creating a visual identity that reflects a brand's values, products, or services. It includes designing visual elements such as logos, color schemes, typography, packaging, and marketing materials. These elements create a consistent and recognizable identity that resonates with the brand's intended audience. Brand design has a business purpose. It's is more than creating a visual identity that looks good; it's about creating an identity that is relevant. One that helps you stand out from the crowd of competitors, establish an emotional connection with your target audience, and increase loyalty. Done right, brand design is able to transform customers into brand advocates, the strongest sales force on earth.
Many think of brand design in terms of aesthetics. But good brand design is not about creating something beautiful. Sometimes creating a cheap looking identity is exactly the right thing to do: the Dutch drugstore chain Kruidvat proves that point. The brand design is able to establish a meaningful connection with the target audience. It creates and manages expectations. When designed for the right audience an identity can establish strong connections and do amazing things. Why else are there people out there who gladly pay 3500 euros for a 100% cotton Supreme t-shirt? It's because they feel the brand looks better on them, than the product itself.
No offense to the world-class marketers at Kruidvat. Although the brand's identity is not to the author's personal liking, it sure is very effective. Kruidvat rationally chooses its audience and knows what customers are longing for. With them in mind, it maintains an identity that reflects a commitment to functionality and affordability. That's what makes Kruidvat such a powerful brand. Same goes for Supreme. The astonishing price-tag and minimal design combined create a buzz, making a statement of the brand's status and value. The high price conveys that Supreme is not just a clothing brand, but a lifestyle brand - pushing the boundaries of what consumers are willing to pay for its products.
Guidelining brand design
Brand design requires clear guidelines to ensure that the visual identity represents your brand values. The method of mapping works miracles. It helps objectify the values your brand stands for by gathering relevant insights and expert opinions from both client and agency stakeholders. The result is a thoroughly analyzed and well-positioned brand that guides the design process.
Brand design is never done and dusted
Brand design is an ongoing process that never really ends in a constantly changing world. That's why we take a fast-paced approach to designing your brand. Building on the Positioning map mentioned earlier, we develop two more maps: the logo map and style map.
The style map is far from a comprehensive brand book; it provides your brand with a general look and feel showing elements like colors, fonts, paragraph styling, and visual devices. We advise against going further than this in the primary stage of establishing your brand. As an ambitious brand, you want to move quickly. However, you still need time to figure out how your brand identity interacts best in the ever-expanding media landscape. Even after your brand design is fully functional, it still requires work. Want to learn more about style maps? Read our blog Branding success with style maps and brand guides.
Think of your brand as the San Francisco Bridge, which needs maintenance every day. It's inevitable that your digital presence will constantly face pressure to change. New technologies emerge, new rules are enforced, and new trends come and go. At New Story, we stay on top of these changes and use an agile approach to future-proof your brand design, helping your business grow sustainable.
Designing a brand identity with a digital-first mindset is essential in today's digital era. Your brand's online presence is critical, and poor design choices can lead to costly mistakes that hinder your brand's growth and success. Designs that are inflexible and unable to adapt across different devices can slow down development, drive costs and negatively impact user experience. Many aesthetic design choices can result in poor accessibility, longer load times and - as a consequence - search engine deprecation. If you neglect designing digital-first, these and other issues can hurt your brand. New Story's creative team includes a cross-functional team of visual design experts that specialize in designing for digital, ensuring that your brand is fully optimized for the online world.
Let's future-proof your brand together
New Story can help you craft a brand identity that reflects your values and resonates with your target audience. Our team of experts will guide you through the process of mapping, designing, and launching your brand identity. Let's work together to build a sustainable brand that will thrive in today's digital era.
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