Powerful branding: Creating a brand with emotional pull - the basics
Ready to get serious about your brand? Great. I'm assuming you've done your homework, and spent some time really considering what you want to be known for? If you haven't done this yet, go back and do it now - you cannot create a powerful design without knowing what it is you want the world to see when they come into contact with your brand.
Beautifully crafted design is crucial to building a beautiful identity. I'm going to share with you some of the techniques that we use at Ditto, so as you'd expect, you may well need a professional creative on hand to implement some things. But whether you're ready to hire a brand stylist like me or simply want some DIY tips to help improve your existing identity, there'll be something here for you!
Let's get started, shall we?
Your logo should be smart, well executed and distinctive. We work through a checklist at Ditto to acid test our designs before we present them to a client, and if they don't pass, they don't get shown. We check that they have a strong silhouette, work just as well in one colour only as they do in full colour, that they're honest and true to the values of the brand. Balance, kerning and proportion can be the difference between mediochre and exceptional, but you'll need an experienced designer to help you with that!
A powerful brand identity consists of a stable of carefully considered typography that reinforces the overall brand. You'll need a headline font, body text font and at least one accent font. Look at the personality of the font - does it feel right for your business?
Colour is a huge topic, but so crucial to get right. At Ditto, we use a process called colour psychology to provide the design cues we need to create brand identities that appeal on an instinctive level. Take a moment to read over my colour psychology series, and see which season fits best with your business - it'll definitely help guide you towards the colours which best represent your business.
Secondary logos & brand elements
We always provide clients with a cluster of secondary logos. Why? Well, it's not always relevant or appropriate to use your full logo; perhaps you have a long and thin logo yet thrive on social media, where the space you have to work within for your profile picture is irritatingly square. For all sorts of reasons, secondary logos can make it much easier to get your brand out there. They might be a variation on your primary logo, or something different - provided that they use your brand fonts and colours, go for it. Brand elements might mean illustrations, icons or shapes; whatever is right for your brand.
Patterns & Texture
To create a brand with depth, we love to add pattern and texture to our brands. The work we did for the Zed Music Cafe shows how texture really conveys the mood of the brand with the use of brick, wood and chalk board - and the Illuminate brand shows how beautiful patterns add that magic ingredient to create a gorgeous feel. Patterns are brilliant for business cards, website and blog backgrounds, stationery and all sorts.
Get creative and have some fun! Next time I'll show you how to use your branding to communicate with flair.