Up to date design makes brands work harder

posted on February 21st 2013 in Branding & Graphic design with 1 Comments

Your overall design theme and your logo are important parts of your overall brand perception. Changing them can become a very emotional decision making process, especially as your logo is often an emotive part of your brand history. Here we look at why up to date design, including your logo make your brand work harder.

‘Up to date design freshness’ works

Brands need to stay up to current. So your overall look and feel needs regular work and a bit of a design MOT every few years. Brochures, leaflets, stationery, and more expensive items like websites have a shelf-life.

Design moves on. The way brochures and websites are designed moves on. Buttons, navigation, shadows all create a ‘design feel’. New ways of doing things and design trends mean most design work can feel like it’s in need of a re-work after three or four years – as up to date design makes brands work harder.

Old images show their age

Your imagery will also show its age – both in the style of shot and the contents. That computer-monitor screen the size of an old cathode-ray TV, or the 90’s power-dressing suit are a guaranteed way to make your imagery look out of date.

People look at pictures more than the text, so if imagery looks tired your brand will too.

The big picture – refreshing brands

So refreshing your brand design is important. It’s worth looking at the big picture too to ensure your logo and brand identity are also cutting it. New brochures and websites lose power if accompanied by a shabby, cheap looking logo.

5 signs for a logo re-think

So is it time for a logo re-fresh? Here are 5 things to check:

  • The cheap type-face only route you used at start-up might make your established and successful company look a bit amateur.
  • The bargain-basement £99 logo you chose from the 25 options delivered really was a bit too good to be true. Brands can easily be made to look cheap, so if your logo looks a bit like a cut-price fried chicken and kebab take-away then you’re probably giving the wrong message.
  • It’s not working in application. Fonts or icons that lack standout will mean you’ll be having trouble getting your identity to have impact on hoardings or a busy page of content. Similarly if you don’t have a logo lock-up for every eventuality having been stuck with a landscape only logo shape, or a colour only version, there will be times where a stacked or colour reversed option would be extremely useful!
  • Ready for social media? Icons and logos that work at very small sizes for apps and social-media profile pictures are now key.
  • It’s 10 years old and not been touched. We’ll investigate logo heritage in an up-coming article, as throwing the logo baby out with the bath water can be a big mistake. But, great logos progress and get refined. If yours is looking tired and not been given some attention for a long time then it’s time to take a look.

Big steps

Changing a logo is a big step. There can be a huge amount of emotional attachment to an established identity, but that doesn’t mean it can’t change.

Undertaken with care a logo can be improved, modernised and refreshed without losing the fundamentals of your original. Unless of course it’s in need of a radical overhaul!

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