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Ways to Know If You Have The Right Logo Design

Do you know what makes a brand succeed and others fail? 

As you know, the quality of the products and services are very important factors in any brand's success. Imagine your products and services are equal, so then what is it that sets your business apart from the competition?

A creative and effective logo and brand design can make a world of difference between your brand and the competition. Just need to consider some of the most famous brands around you. They employ logos that are not only specific and eye-catching, but also meaningful and memorable as well.

A logo is a brand visual identifier such as a mark or a signature. A logo is rarely a description of your business. Your logo derives meaning from the quality of the idea it symbolises, not the other way around.

So, back to your business logo. Think about the design and meaning. Maybe right now you don’t have one, or just quietly you don’t like your logo, or you do but not sure whether you should stick with it forever.

Forever is a long time, especially if you’re building a business with longevity in mind. Before you approve or disapprove of any logo created, you need to work out which logo design is the right one for your business?

Don't worry. I’m here to help you. There are quite a few elements you need to pay attention to, so just take a moment and read through my list to get you started.

Does my logo tell the story of my brand?

Think about your target market or audience. An effective logo design doesn’t have to portray a company’s product or services. Ask yourself what meaning or message it should communicate.

It is important to know a logo is more than just an image. It’s the public face of your brand and its unique visual identifier. It’s important to consider what your brand offers and who the target market is. Should it be represented by a particular emotion or specific utility?

Remember an effective logo design doesn’t have to portray what the business does or sells. Nowhere in McDonald’s famous logo is there a hamburger. Apple doesn’t sell apples, and Nike doesn’t sell ‘sneakers’, but each logo represents these brands through a combination of shape, colour and symbolism.

Is my logo simple?

Don’t try to create a too complex design. Simple logos are more recognisable and memorable.

When it comes to effectively conveying a brand’s key message, simplicity in logos is by far more recognisable and memorable. A lot of the time logo designers try to create a design too complex for audiences to understand or memorise.

Think of a large notice board also known as a billboard. The audience might drive past by at high speeds, so the design should be seen, recognised and communicated quickly.
A complicated design (logo, billboard, magazine, website, etc.) will be nothing but an incomprehensible image. Some of the most famous logos are made of simplistic shapes and colours.

Just think of the Nike or Apple logo. The basic shapes are immediately associated with the brands they represent. The designers or founders of these companies had a vision, they’re thinking differently, they’re thinking out of the box and it worked.

Is my logo unique?

Brands can be distinguished from their competitors by their logos. A glass of Pepsi looks pretty much the same as a glass of Coca Cola. Some people can’t tell them apart by their taste (I know I can, I prefer Coke but that’s just me!). So, what makes Coke different from Pepsi at first sight? YES! The logo and advertising.

When you want to choose your logo with the aim of standing out from the competition, it’s important to think outside the box. Neither Coke or Pepsi feature the actual beverage in their logos. Just imagine If every travel agency used an aeroplane or train in their logo designs, would anyone recognise one from the next?

Does my logo speak to your audience?

The first step for your graphic designer is market research, because they might not be familiar with your brand. You, by providing all the information and brief, can help the designer to understand who are the target customers and what ways the brand should choose to communicate to them.

When the designer creates an identity for your brand, it’s more important to consider what message will speak to the target audience, rather than your personal tastes as a business owner. If you are a conservative person may prefer the grey colour and black letters, but if the brand targets a young, urban audience, bright colours and creative fonts will be more helpful. So, give all the information to your designer and  leave it to them to do the best for your business.

Is my logo timeless?

You don’t want your brand to be a passing trend, do you?! So don't use current trend designs.

You need to ask yourself some questions: will my logo convey the same message to its target market in 20 years or 30 years or even 60 years’ time? Will it still stand apart from the competition? If you find yourself creating heavily from the latest design trends, the answer is more than likely, no.

Is my logo versatile?

Professional logos should be scalable so they can easily be transformed between sizes and formats. So, always ask your designer for the vector format.

Probably you will use your logo in a variety of media, so your logo needs to be designed in full colour as well as black and white, with different sizes and formats.

The designer you hired should think big. Just because the design represents a small-scale brand right now it doesn’t mean that your company will not grow in a few months or years, so they need to provide all varieties of the logo versions.

Does my logo have an appropriate and effective typeface? 

Your logo should use no more than two fonts which helps make it versatile, distinctive and easy to read.

Helvetica is one of the most commonly-used fonts in logo design, as seen in popular brands such as Microsoft, Nestle, Target, Jeep, Toyota and Panasonic.

Some logos are completely typography-based, known as word marks, such as Coca-Cola. This kind of design is popular for big companies because of its simplicity and ease of reproduction.

If your company has a unique name, you could get away with a logotype. But if you have a generic name, then you need something to identify the brand by, which can be achieved by using a logo mark.

Does my logo utilise empty space? 

Sometimes the most effective element in a design is nothing at all!

Using negative space is necessary to communicate aspects of the brand, such as FedEx.

The logo is made by the company’s name but positioned in a way that the empty space between E and X creates a hidden arrow. This is the negative space between the “E” and ->”X” as you can see in the image below.

Even if the empty space in a logo isn’t sending a message, it’s still an important element of the design. Without any empty spaces, your logo could blend into whatever background in which it appears.

Does my logo use a consistent colour scheme?

Effective logos should be versatile enough to convey a message in full colour, black and white, but should not rely on colour alone.

So if your logo design conveys its message through the use of colours, ask your designer to alter the contrast of various elements or use the lines around the shapes to retain the same meaning as presented.

Should my logo feature a recognisable symbolism?

Many of the professional logo designs use visual double entendre, in which images take on more than one meaning to transfer a more powerful message.

Let’s have a look into the Amazon logo. They use a simple logo that consists of the company’s name. Pretty straightforward, right? But when looking closer, the name is underlined with an arrow from “a” to “z,” expressing that the retailer offers anything a buyer could want, from A to Z. It’s so creative, isn't it?!

Does your logo Design utilise shape psychology?

By using round shapes, such as circles, ovals and curved lines, you can show positive emotion, femininity and endurance. On the other hand angular shapes for example, squares and triangles convey power, stability and masculinity.

So, by using different shapes you can transfer different emotions.

Is my logo effective or instantly recognisable?

If you want your logo to be fully effective, it must be recognisable. Studies show that even small children can recognise many brands by their iconic logos.

It is important to realise that many famous logos stand out because their designers thought outside the box and broke the rules in design.

Just consider, the more audiences see a consistent logo, the more they recognise the brand. If it’s changed, the brand recognition can disappear with the original design, so if you have a small business it is important to create a fantastic logo not just for today. Think about the future when your company turns into a worldwide business.

To sum it up, be memorable 

Think of the Apple logo or Mcdonald’s again. Just as an effective logo must be recognisable, it must be memorable, too. What makes Apple or Mcdonald’s stand out, so that audiences will remember the design and associate it with the brand?

Often, a single unique element can make a logo timeless by remaining in a viewer's mind making it instantly recognisable. Let’s have a look at the Apple logo in the image below. There’s nothing memorable about the silhouette of a fruit. But by removing a bite from the shape, the brand created a logo that is associated with it, and with it alone. Apple is a good example of one of the world's most iconic and memorable logo designs.

So, it’s time you have a look again at your business logo and check these elements the effective logo has to have. Something missing? We are also always happy to help you. Let’s have a coffee on us and chat about your marketing and your brand.

Hope to see you soon. 🙂

From Drab to Fab - Our Three Best Video Editing Tips

You find yourself stumbling nervously through the dark stormy night as thunder rolls across the sky and the heavy rain lashes at your back, searching for a reprieve from the weather, and more importantly - answers. 

You continue trudging across the windswept landscape and you feel as if you’re losing hope when suddenly a light appears in the distance - salvation. You thrust open the doors to the editing suite and walk through to behold, me, the editing lord, sitting on the rolling office chair throne. 

“My child,” I speak, “what is it you seek?”

You stutter nervously, your emotions are a mess, this is the moment that you’ve worked so hard for. 

“My lord…” you steel yourself, “I, I seek… Three tips to improve my video editing.”

“Well you’ve come to the right place, I’ve actually got a blog about it so have a read.”…

Video editing is an artform, as much so as painting or drawing. In written art forms, you start with a blank canvas and then from that you add elements with the artistic tools at your disposal until you’re left with something emotionally evocative. Video is the exact same. And more.

Any Joe Blow can throw a bunch of clips together into what then becomes simply a longer clip. Video editing takes more finesse than that, and to deliver professional results it requires skills that are honed over time and practice. 

That being said, there are a few things to keep in mind when editing that will drastically help you improve the outcome of your video. Let’s have a closer look at three of them.

Use the right tools

Depending on what project an artist is working on they will have a different set of specific tools for the job. Fine line work requires finer brushes, large watercolour canvas pieces need watercolour pencils, body art requires a special kind of paint. There is no ‘one solution that fits all’, and the same goes for video editing. 

When editing, you need the right software for the job (this is your canvas), sometimes that’s professional video editing software, sometimes it's audio editing software and sometimes you might need some animation software as well. Every video is going to have different needs and to accommodate these needs you will require a variety of tools. 

Software is just the beginning. Once you get that down you need to think about transitions, music, colour grades, titles, animatics, and so much more. 

There are a large number of factors to consider when editing that make a video look more professional, but having the right supplementary tools like those listed above is important. Pick and choose which will have the most effect, and which will drive the point of your video home. 

If you have a super dramatic and slow moving video then you won’t have fast paced transitions, it wouldn’t make sense to confuse your audience with slow dramatic shots and then fast energetic transitions. 

If your video is fast paced and super high energy then you wouldn’t use a slow orchestral piece for the music, once again this would confuse your audience. 

In the instance you create a series of short videos for social media, you wouldn’t tack a bunch of long credits on the end or a lengthy outro because these would interrupt the flow of the video, but for something like YouTube these elements would make more sense. 

I know a lot of these things sound very self-explanatory but I cannot stress enough how important it is to firstly use the right software and secondly use the right element at the right time. Select the right music, the right colour grade, the right transitions, etc. 

Just throwing music or transitions into a video with no real purpose behind them doesn’t make your video look professional, it makes it look messy and distracting. 

Tell a story

This one might also sound a bit silly but bear with me here. 

They say a picture speaks a thousand words, well imagine how many words a sequence of moving images can speak. Film is an artform and is used to evoke a response in your audience. So when you are editing be sure to keep that emotion or response in mind before creating your piece. 

It’s important to tell a story or express your point in the edit, not simply choose the prettiest or coolest images and then throw them together. Sometimes the coolest images will be the ones that express your point the best, if that’s the case then great, throw them in, if not, save them for later. 

Cut footage that doesn’t add to your story, don’t add elements that might confuse or overstimulate an audience and select the right shots to evoke the response you’re looking for in your audience. 

Essentially, make sure your video (and every element within your video) actually means something, ensure that it serves a purpose otherwise you’re not truly creating a video, you’re just creating clutter. 

Watch your footage before you edit

Don’t just start throwing footage into a timeline and chopping it to pieces as soon as you get a hold of it. Be sure to take the time to look through the footage you have and determine what shots will be the best fit for your video. 

Similarly to elements, each shot is going to evoke a different response in an audience. Your job as an editor is to ensure that the right shots are in the right position within your video to evoke that desired response. How are you supposed to do that if you yourself haven’t watched the footage back to see how each clip makes you feel? 

Your video will come together far more smoothly if you already know what shots you are dealing with, as opposed to searching through and having to find something that fits every single time. 

Basically it all comes down to knowing what you have at your disposal, so that you can create the most effective finished product. 

Bonus Round

Okay, I promised only three tips but here are a few quick ones that’ll help improve the quality of your video edits. 

Shot variation is a good thing to keep in mind. Basically just changing what types of shots are in your footage, if you have a lot of shots that look very similar then throw something a little different in there to spice it up (only if the other shot makes sense though).

When cutting away be sure to cut on an action, this is called a match on action cut and it makes more sense to your audience as opposed to cutting when there isn’t much movement in the frame.

Colour grade your videos. Colour grading is an art in itself but a simple dash of saturation can go a long way when your finished product is distributed. Try and select a colour grade that matches the mood of your video. 

Normalise your audio if you have anyone speaking or any background noise. Be sure that all the audio for your video is consistent and your audience doesn't need to change the volume of their output device to listen to your video. 

Finally, edit to music if you can. If your video is set to a backing track be sure to edit to the beat of the music so that none of the transitions feel jarring or jumpy, and your video has a clear rhythm. 

“I hope this information shall serve you well young Squire, now go out there into the wide world of video editing and make me proud. Oh, you have something to say? Please just leave a comment below and I’ll get back to you.”

Search engine what? Demystifying the big SEO monster

Every time I think about the SEO monster, I can’t help but think about my dad saying “Don’t make a salad of shit!” (Pardon my French). 

SEO, as we know, stands for Search Engine Optimisation. This means: “How can we make Google love us?” or “What can we do, so Google and other search engines can find our website, and rank it at the top of people’s searches?”.

It is a simple concept, but not-so-easy in practice. This brings me to the salad. We see a big problem because we tend to bundle all the s**t together. However, when we break it down, it becomes less of a problem. 

So, let’s have a look at the SEO basics to start understanding and benefitting from them.

Why even learn about SEO?

Well, not taking care of our SEO is a bit like having a shop and not sharing the address in directories or maps. That’s it, I have this beautiful shop that offers so many amazing products, but no one knows where it is.

Imagine that Alice is thinking of buying a gift for a friend and wants a beautiful, unique candle that burns for a long time, plus some other cute little things. She needs these products and would love your shop (since you sell the best candles, and lots and lots of gorgeous items that women love). 

She would spend hours browsing in your online shop, finding mementos for all her friends, and super cute little treasures for herself. It could even become her happy place. 

Alice always asks “George” for help, because he is the best at giving recommendations. “George” gets out and about so much and knows every hidden gem. He never fails. 

Unfortunately, “George” doesn’t know your beautiful shop exists. So, he will recommend other “close matches” to Alice, and just like that, she will miss the opportunity to fall in love with your shop. Sad, right?

SEO is vital to increase the quality and quantity of traffic that visits your website. Therefore, it also helps increase brand awareness, attract local customers and build credibility and trust. Win, Win, Win, for sure.

On top of that, amongst other benefits, we’d like to point out that SEO is a very solid marketing tool. When you invest in it, whether time, money or both, the results tend to last for a long period of time. Once George knows your shop is there, he will be able to tell more and more people about it (although it is good to remind him that you are there from time to time).

Let’s break it down to the SEO basics.

There are 2 parts of SEO: On-page SEO and Off-page SEO.

On-page SEO

Let’s start with On-page SEO, because it’s the one you have more control over. On-page SEO involves optimising your website for search engines to find you.

You can find “how search engines find you” with a simple Google search, so we won’t get into that, but think WORDS, more specifically KEYWORDS. Hold the thought for a moment.

In order to optimise your website you will need to tackle both your content and the technical aspects that run in the background (big words like html source code, meta tags, schema, etc.). Don’t panic, we will only look at the SEO basics, and will give you some tips to get started.

So, coming back to the keywords. Alice will search for words related to the gorgeous candles you sell, such as: beautiful candles, candles Sunshine Coast, most unique candles, etc.

When she searches for those terms, Google sends its battalion of spiders to crawl the web and find those keywords, and other key terms that are relevant to the words she would use to find your shop. 

As you may imagine, if you don’t display those words on your website, “George” (ahem, Google) won’t be able to find you.

So, you need to identify those popular words that your “Alice” (A.K.A. ideal client)  would use to find your products, a set of words closely related to them and another set of words that are close but don’t mention candles. 

(Think of the game, Taboo. The player can’t mention the word, or the forbidden words, e.g. wax, to their team and the others have to guess what it is). Therefore, as an overall rule, use not only keywords but also their synonyms and related words. This helps Google see your content as relevant and comprehensive.

The key with keywords, no pun intended, is to find the sweet spot. If it is too popular the big players will definitely beat you. If it is too niche your audience won’t probably think of them. Take your time doing this research, because it is what will set you up for success. 

Then, you need to make sure that these words populate your website, as much as possible, without sounding like a machine of course.

Tip: Before making any changes, you may want to have a look at your Google Analytics to have a baseline and see how the changes you make affect the traffic that goes to your website.

Every time you write a blogpost, the copy on your pages, product descriptions, etc., remember that that’s the content your audience actually sees, so these are the perfect sports to add the keywords to.

On-page SEO basics - On the outside:

Then turn to the back-end of your site and check how its guts look like. Those keywords can live in many places, so let’s give them many homes.

Photos, graphics, videos and other visual content are very important. They can have a name, Alt-text, title, caption, description, etc. Fill in the relevant fields (including keywords) to lure Google and other search engines to show it to more people.

In terms of the blog post and other pages with text, a plugin like YOAST SEO will guide you through the process of where these keywords could be added. 

On-page SEO basics - On the inside:

Change it to a brief and clear description of what the page is about, including your main keyword if possible.

Modify the Slug (the part of the url specific to that page that follows the main domain page, i.e. https://yourbrandcrew.com.au/blogging-for-your-business/). Keep it relevant to the text and include the keywords if possible.

Alt-text and description in images and other graphics should include your keywords or synonym keywords in them.

Add relevant tags and categories to your pages. This will help Google (and other search engines) to find you.

By paying attention to these fundamental items, you will see a great improvement on the performance of your website. Keep polishing your SEO by regularly adding and optimising content relevant to your products or services.

Off-page SEO

To improve your Off-page SEO you will have to get out of your site and build the roads that lead to it.

It’s funny how “George” knows everyone, but very few people have been able to actually talk to him directly (he is so busy). So, to build your reputation and be known by him, you have to make your site popular with his friends.

Search engines, like Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc… look all around the world for sites their users will love. With the immeasurable amount of content created every minute, there has to be a hierarchy. 

What we mean by that is they will search first amongst the sites that have higher authority, trustworthiness and relevance on the whole wide web and see who they know. 

When one of these websites mentions yours is like a golden star ticket that says “go to see my friend’s shop, they have the most unique, beautiful and aromatic candles on the Sunshine Coast”.

These “mentions” are called backlinks and they are actually a link to your website on a different page. Other types of “mentions” come from local search citations (directories and listings), social media marketing, guest bloggings, brand mentions, influence marketing and other “shout outs”.

Think of off-page SEO as networking. You will need to build relationships with other businesses to have a genuine recommendation from them. 

Maybe you meet a florist that knows that every time a group of girl friends buy flowers for another friend they like to add a few cute items to the gift. If the florist loves what you do, she will take her customers to you in a blink, because it means she will be giving value to them and helping you at the same time.

Off-page SEO basics:
The never ending story

As you can see, these are a few SEO basics to get you started, there is so much more to learn. However, these already provide a very solid foundation, and a big chunk of work that you can implement straight away to increase traffic to your website.

Think of it as a never ending story, but in a good way. This is a marathon, not a sprint, so learn to love the journey and cruise through it. Keep in your mind “I’m giving extra value to my Alices and showing George how many people I can help too”

If you want to learn more, we found a very comprehensive beginner course. Remember, if you feel overwhelmed don’t get trapped in the “salad of sh*t”, break it down to make it easier.

We hope we helped make this big SEO monster a bit less scary with our SEO basics. We would be happy to give you a hand with any of that, if you need it, just leave us a comment below.

How to use colours in marketing and advertising

Have you ever wondered why you feel slightly alarmed when staring at a red stop sign and why the world has chosen red, green and yellow for traffic lights?  Those are just two of the many effects colour has on the human psyche. It’s all part of a study referred to as the psychology of colour.

Our brain uses the colours to recognise characters and properties about business, brands and products. Our brain understands that the colour palette that would feel suitable for an Italian restaurant is not appropriate for a real estate agency. This is colour psychology in marketing and advertising.

If you look at the commonly used colours in advertising for any industry, you can find many of the same colours repeated and used, again and again. It does not happen accidentally, and not just because the business owner likes this colour! These are the colours that connected the audience with their needs and expectations from brands in the industry.

The colour psychology in marketing and branding is what I am going to explore today to help you communicate your messages most effectively with your audience, so keep reading.

Why do colours matter in marketing and advertising?

Colours speak a language that is more efficient than words. Colours can communicate with us on an emotional level, so they can be more effective and persuasive.

With choosing the right colour you can convince your customers that your product is fresher than the same product with a different colour.

It is unbelievable, but colours can even make medication or placebos feel more effective. Medicine companies use the colour associations to make sleeping pills blue and motivation yellow and red because consumers associate the colours with their respective effects.

It seems like magic but I have found some data to support it. For 85% of customers colour is the primary reason for choosing which product to buy. Also up to 90% of impulse decisions about a product are based on the products’ colour.

Colour psychology researchers found 42% customers form their opinions of websites based on the web designs with colour contributing more to their opinions than other factors. And 52% of the time, bad colour choice sends users off a website and they never return.

How colours communicate with customers

Now you know that colours are important in marketing and advertising, but the real challenge is to use colour psychology to speak to your clients. Probably you know the basics of what some colours mean, like red indicates passion and white shows cleanliness, but that is just scratching the surface of colour psychology. The colours can influence how a customer thinks and feels about a brand and business.

According to researchers, there are links between specific colours and behaviours, like royal blue, red, black and orange which easily connect with impulse customers.

For example, the colour brown is not a good choice for fresh-food product packaging because it reminds us of rotting fruits and veggies. Otherwise red is a popular colour for fresh-food brands because it reminds us of the red fruits which are ripe and ready to eat, as well as fresh meat is always red.

We can look at nature and see what the colours mean, and in any design the best way is choosing colour according to nature’s rules.

Our feelings about a colour can depend on our culture and personal background, so we need to generalise the colours based on the colour psychology and combine science with target audience research and find what our consumers prefer.

What’s the effect of colours in advertising and marketing?

Each colour has its own effect on people that you can take advantage of in your advertising and branding materials.

Although the meaning and feeling of each colour depends on the colour saturation, opacity and the shade of that colour but here, I am going to explain the meaning of some basic colours to give you an idea of the best opportunities to use specific colours in your advertising and marketing.

Blue

Blue is a calming colour that is typically regarded as a masculine colour, but there is more to this colour.

Blue is for intelligence and responsibility. Also, it is cool and relaxing. Light blue is peaceful and evokes trust, honesty and loyalty, while dark blue can show depth and power.

According to this meaning, blue is a popular colour for banks, yoga studios and hospitals because with using the blue you can easily remind the audience subconsciously that they can trust the brand to protect them.

Green

Green is a good colour for professional, calm and mature brands, and the popular colour for health and environment business.

Green represents growth, spring and rebirth as well.  Another meaning is “getting the green light” to go ahead, giving it an association with taking action.

Green reminds people of recycling through association, so is perfect for any brands that advertise as organic and eco friendly. Also, the colour green is a good choice for spa branding because it represents the soothing and renewing experience.

Purple

Purple is not a colour we see often in nature. Purple is royal, mystical, luxurious, wise, sensual and represents military honour. A light purple is associated with feminine energy.

Purple is often used for high quality brands. It is seen in examples such as Cadbury’s chocolate advertising or some women's cosmetics.

Red

Red is the warm and physical colour that is associated with high energy, fire, anger, passion, love, danger and confidence. 

Red is a best choice for dating apps and businesses that have sexy services. Red also can catch the attention and increase appetite, so it is ideal for restaurant branding.

Globally, all the danger signs are red. If you use the red in a wrong application, it may show and create aggressiveness and anger.

Orange

Orange, just like red, is warm and high energy. Also friendly and cheerful. By using this colour you can show affordability, humour, vitality, youth and seasonal changes.

Orange is a great colour to use for kids products like trampoline to attract kids and teens for a bouncy, energetic good time.

Yellow

Yellow represents energy, happiness, warmth, playfulness and youth as well. With using yellow colour in your brand you have the advantage of being both light and bold at the same time.

Just be aware that one of these associations is not like the others. For example, the dangerous meaning of yellow represents much like fire but the danger of red is negative. So considering what a brand needs, you have to choose the best colour.

Pink

Pink is more used for girls brands and products. Pink can be fun, sweet, romantic, girly, delicate and peaceful. Pink can be a good colour for candy and lolly shops because it represents sweet. It is also the colour for businesses that are feminine and proud of it. You can use hot pink graphics in your advertising if you want to teach women how to be bold and protect themselves.

How colour meanings vary by culture

Always acknowledge your target market audience’s cultural background before choosing a colour palette. Many colours have specific meanings in some cultures that are different in others.

For example, in Japan yellow represents courage whereas in parts of South America it can be a signal for cowardice. In some Latin American cultures, yellow shows death and mourning. In Germany they use yellow for envy.

The first step to design any marketing and advertising materials for your brand is researching your target audiences. Using a colour palette that doesn't fit with your target expectations can doom your brand before it reaches the market.

How to test your colour marketing strategy

Knowing colour psychology is necessary for designers to make informed design decisions in advertising and marketing. Your designer with their experience and knowledge can choose the best colour palette for your brand.

Designers test lots of colour palettes to find the most effective ones. They use the bracket tournament, which is to test one colour against another to see which garners a stronger positive response from the target audience. Then they put winners against each other again to determine the final colour palette that is more effective with the customers.

When they are correctly tested, you can confidently use the colour choices for each design, logo, website, packaging, flyers, etc.

Colours amplify your marketing message

Now you know that using colour strategically is more than choosing a beautiful colour that looks good to you. 

After all, maybe today you are walking around and think olive green and lemonade pink are a match made in heaven. For some businesses maybe they are (not really)!

Do you want to choose your colour palette confidently? Easy peasy! Give us a Buzz for a FREE Biz Boost Strategy Session! 60 minutes of FREE Marketing advice.

The logo variations that every brand needs to have

Wherever you go, you base your looks on the surrounding environment. Isn't that right? You don't wear party shoes when you are going to the office, and vice versa. So, for every occasion you change your outfit. 

You may wear a colourful dress for a birthday party, and maybe just something black and white for a job interview. Simply, because subconsciously you want to match and fit in with the place.

Fittingly, the main topic today is LOGO DESIGN. You may think we didn't start talking about logo design right at the beginning but actually we’re talking about VARIATIONS.

When you design a professional logo for your brand (and for a professional design you need a professional designer as well), the logo can and should take on many forms. This is where logo variation comes in.

First thing first though, what is logo variation and why does your business need it?

A logo variation is an alternate version of your primary logo design. The logo variation gives your business the ability to be consistent, recognisable, cohesive yet fit in many different places.

A Facebook ad design, a website and a business card may require different logos in different colours or shapes. It does not mean you need to have many logos. 

Depending on the situation, maybe you just need to change the primary logo colour or use the horizontal version instead of the vertical one. Rather than relying on a single logo to do all the legwork, your brand can have flexibility by developing several logo variations.

I’ll go over four important types of logo variations that are primary, stacked or secondary, submark and favicon, to help you find out which ones you need for your brand.

Primary logo

The first logo you need to design is the primary logo. This is the main, complete and complex logo. You will use this primary logo most often. 

Primary logos can include a company name, tagline, and the date of establishment. Your logo is the front-and-centre representation of who you are as a brand, whether it’s placed on signage or on employee T-shirts.

A primary logo is commonly horizontal, but depending on the design and theme, this can vary. Remember to have a black-and-white version of your primary logo as well if the original contains colour.

Make sure that your primary logo is not overshadowed by other design elements, so that it can stand out. It is important for the primary logo to be gripping, memorable, and adaptable.

For consistency, most brands settle on one primary logo. Occasionally, however, we'll see an exception, such as Adidas. The brand uses three primary logos, which vary depending on the collection. With the same font and three stripes throughout each logo, they maintain cohesion. 

Most brands will not benefit from this strategy, especially if their business is still growing. Nevertheless, Adidas is the second-largest athletic apparel manufacturer in the world.

In contrast to Adidas, most brands use a primary logo that has multiple variations, such as secondary, submarks, or favicons.

As soon as you've established your primary logo, it's time to design a secondary logo as well. The main goal of a secondary logo is to have a different arrangement from the primary. 

For instance, if your primary logo is horizontal with an image and words nearby, the secondary logo can be designed with an image above or underneath the words.

Think of your secondary logo as the main logo's reflection. To keep your brand persona consistent, it should use the same fonts, same weight, and overall design. When there isn't much space available or your primary logo won't fit, a secondary logo will come in useful.

For example, a horizontal logo can be better fit for the letterhead template or business card because different places have varied space needs for logos. 

Perhaps a vertical, stacked logo might work much better as a social media profile image. Your secondary logo works as a backup in situations where your primary logo doesn't fit or look its best.

Submark

It's crucial to design your submark when your primary and secondary logos are finalised. This is the most condensed and streamlined type of the logo, and it will be useful when you need to fit a logo into a small area, both in print and digital formats. 

Keep in mind that not all primary and secondary logos were designed to be reduced in size. A submark will be useful in that situation.

Submarks with only symbols, or circles with text and/or symbols, are the two most popular varieties. You might or might not require a submark depending on the size and arrangement of your primary and secondary logos, but having one is always a good idea.

Submarks make excellent stickers and are frequently used in print as footers or watermarks. When you need to use your logo in a digital setting but prefer it to look more polished, a submark is ideal as a social media avatar.

Favicon

Last but not least, designing a favicon is an important step in establishing logo variations. An internet browser's top bar contains a small icon called a favicon. Depending on the style and arrangement, it's frequently merely a symbol but can also fit a few letters.

A favicon's main function is to serve as a visual reminder of a brand's identity. A favicon can also make it simpler for users to find your website if they have several tabs open. Visitors can find your website easily while you increase brand awareness and identification by using a favicon.

A favicon may not always be required for your brand, but it can be useful because it can also serve as an app icon. Consider the many apps you have on your phone and how certain icons are more noticeable than others.

Play around with logo variations

The element of your brand that people are most likely to recognise is your logo. It should not only be lovely and unforgettable, but also flexible enough to take on several forms. 

When using different logo versions, your brand will be equipped to make a strong impression anywhere and at any moment. The complete visual brand experience is created by a primary logo, secondary logo, submark, and favicon. Additionally, professional designers are never too far away if you feel overwhelmed by how to proceed.

Yay! The party is about to start. Do you need any help to choose the best outfit for your brand? Give us a free buzz 🙂

Graphic Design In Advertising: Why Is It Important?

Advertising relies heavily on graphic design, but some marketers are unaware of its potential. Even worse, the majority of graphic designers lack advertising knowledge. We'll therefore cover everything in this piece that you need to know about graphic design in advertising, whether you're a marketer, a business owner, or a graphic artist.

What does graphic design for advertising entail?

In advertising, graphic design makes use of visual components to spread a message or advertise a product. In order to produce effective commercials that attract new clients and boost revenue, it is necessary to strategically use colour, imagery, typography, and layout.

You may observe dozens of designs vying with one another for people's attention in the image below. Which one catches your eye? Consider, why.

How are graphics used in advertising?

In advertising and marketing, graphic designs are utilised in all aspects of the process, including brochures, packaging, logo design, website development, display ads, and billboards. The main objective is to produce a visually appealing graphic that highlights the provided goods or services.

What are advertisement graphics?

Any visual design that affects the purchase of a good or service, whether through marketing or attention-grabbing packaging, is known as an advertisement graphic. The logo, which contributes to brand identity but most businesses neglect, is a frequently ignored promotional graphic.

5 Reasons Why Graphic Design Is Important for Advertising

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1-Increased conversions

Graphic design is essential since it raises the effectiveness of your advertising efforts' conversion rates. Make sure potential clients will be drawn to your goods and services when you advertise them. I advise creating a graphic design approach (strategy) to do this.

You can draw in more customers who want to purchase your product if you produce images that are visually appealing. Additionally, your advertising should be concise and straightforward. Asking for reviews, Using images of your customers and using your product or service would be a great way to increase conversions.

Your customer won't understand what you're trying to tell them if your message is unclear. They may believe you are misrepresenting them or are attempting to sell them something else. Therefore, a bad conversion rate may result from a confusing advertisement.

2-Brand recognition

One of the important components of corporate advertising is brand familiarity. Building a solid identity requires a lot of time and money. Because of this, forward-thinking businesses invest a lot of money and time in building their brands.

Hiring graphic designers that can incorporate the brand's aesthetic into visual communication is the simplest approach to achieve this.

The major objective is to increase consumer recognition of their clients' products. They must, therefore, ensure the consistency of all the company's materials.

Every component of the product must be integrated by the graphic designer into a single design scheme. To do this, the designer needs to be aware of the message the business wants to express through their advertisement. After that, each component should be used to deliver the same message.

3-Effective communication

Advertising is communication that influences people to purchase goods or services through the use of images, words, sounds, and body language. Consequently, visual design is essential to effective communication. 

Through a variety of media, including print, radio, television, billboards, websites, and social media, we assist businesses in communicating their message. The objective is to convert audiences into consumers.

Design is not just used in conventional means of advertising like print and television. It is employed in digital marketing as well. Websites, blogs, email newsletters, social media posts, video advertisements, and infographics are a few examples. Modern advertising relies heavily on visual design in order to communicate a company's brand identity and increase sales.

The ideal strategy is to use graphics in advertisements. 93 percent of communication, as you may know, is non-verbal.

4-Getting attention

Additionally, graphic design is crucial to drawing attention. A good design will aid in drawing customers' attention, whether you're creating a logo, website banner, or any other type of advertisement. You must present yourself professionally and put thought into your design if you want to stand out.

You should use succinct and clear wording to grab the interest of potential customers. Consider design with a minimal aesthetic. Stay away from using too many colours, big images, or intricate text. To divide and organise your message, use white space. And keep in mind that drawing attention is what you want your design to do.

5-Makes it memorable

Advertising's ability to stick into the mind of the audience is greatly influenced by graphic design. A message may be communicated and is more likely to stick with people when the appropriate combination of colours, forms, fonts, photography, illustration, and animation is used.

At least nearly half of advertising companies' overall budgets are allocated to graphic design, or at least they should be. Television advertisements often cost $3,500 per second. Because failure is costly, make your design as memorable as you can.

The most crucial quality to consider when picking a graphic designer is their level of expertise. They must do more than just be imaginative. They must also possess excellent communication skills. In order for you to understand what they're driving at, they should be able to describe how they operate. In addition, if they lack experience interacting with clients, they ought to collaborate with you to guarantee your satisfaction with the outcome.


Book in a FREE Biz Boost advertising session with us if you need a creative advertising team to amp up your brand.

The Worst Typography Mistakes

Even though typography can seem simple, it's still possible to get it wrong very easily. 

Choosing a typeface, adjusting the size, and perhaps altering the colour seems pretty straightforward, right? Wrong! 

The truth is, effective typesetting involves so much more.

Here are some of the best (worst?) examples to save you time, effort, and embarrassment:

01- Using a Bad Font

Why is a font bad? There are many reasons. Some fonts can be difficult to read, while others can be distracting, or simply too much. 

Fonts to choose instead:

You have a tonne of gorgeous, readable, and innovative font selections to choose from for your design. Some of our favourites are as follow:

02- Using Too Many Typefaces or Font Styles

What number of typefaces is excessive? In general, using more than two fonts or font styles is superfluous and not a good idea, especially if you're new to typographic design.

In case you forgot, a typeface is a family of fonts.

How to use typefaces instead:

This one is a no-brainer. Keep it simple, please! You should be alright as long as you stick to one or two options.

03- Poor Font Pairings

It's nice to have it down to two typefaces, but that is just half the battle.

Fonts that are too similar to one another may confuse the reader. It undermines the hierarchy you're attempting to create or softens the point you're attempting to make.

What to do instead:

Similar to wine and food pairing, font pairing also takes practice. Any two possibilities could be combined, but a perfect pair is required for a tasty design. There are countless variations possible. Here are some excellent Google Font combinations:

04- Tragic Tracking

The concept of tracking refers to the standard spacing between each character in a piece of text.

Letters that are too close together may overlap and become challenging to read. When they are too far apart, it is challenging to distinguish the individual words.

What to do instead:

As you make your adjustments, bear the following in mind to prevent committing the crime of "tragic tracking."

Readability: Is the text easy to read?

Can you identify which letters go with which words?

Your content should be in good shape as long as both of those statements are accurate.

05- Don't stretch your font

When stretching a font your text may become distorted, difficult to read, pixelated, or simply unattractive.

Therefore, kindly refrain from stretching, scrunching/squishing, slanting, or doing anything else that could obliterate the lovely shapes of the letters you are working with.

What to do instead:

Change the weight or form of the letters by using a different style of the same font. If the font you're using and the desired effect are right, highlighting the word may be as easy as pressing a button. Yes, it's that easy!

Changing character spacing is all you need to do, so keep tracking in mind. Tracking is a great option if you want to change the spacing between each of your characters at once.

06- Inappropriate Use of Hatch Marks (or Prime Marks)

When we're talking about measurements, hatch marks (or prime marks), also known as 'dumb quotes', are used to notate measurements, but many of us mistake them for apostrophes. It's sometimes confusing, but it's mostly just... wrong.

What to do instead:

The difference between "dumb quotes" and "smart quotes" is important to recognize. In dumb quotes, the markings are usually just straight lines. The smart quotes that you should use to contract and quote are those lovely little curved characters that we use prefer to use.

07- Rage of Rorschach

(The rag is the side of the paragraph that isn't justified -- i.e. not perfectly aligned. In the western world, it is usually the right side.)

You shouldn't let the rag make your paragraphs into discernible and distracting shapes unless you're working on a concrete poem or a snazzy experimental typography.

What to do instead:

Take control of the shapes if you notice the rag lining up perfectly square, all over the place, or looking like Maine. of the lines and the breaks so that the rag is nice and organic

08-Leaving Behind ‘Orphans’ and ‘Widows’

The term ‘widow’ refers to a line that opens a paragraph, which is separated by a page break or column, from the rest of the paragraph. Therefore, it is left all by itself. It's so sad. So lonely.

To run with the same sad concept, an ‘orphan’ is a paragraph-closing line that's either too short, or is isolated at the end of the section.

What to do instead:

Keep those sentences together into a single, happy paragraph. A simple way to fix the problem. By including breaks and moving words to the next line, you can manually change the line lengths.

In essence, you merely need to "return" everyone who is an orphan or widow to their family.

09- SO Many Signals!!!

Did reading that completely awful heading hurt your eyes? Because it certainly hurt mine just to write it.

Why? Like most readers, us, designers too, prefer it to be obvious to know what deserves our undivided attention. The message becomes muddled and the emphasis is lost when you overuse stressing signals like caps, bold, italic, underline, etc.

What to do instead:

The solution to this typography offence is to keep things straightforward. Create a single, consistent technique to highlight your text, and please stop there. It really is that simple.

10- Doubling Down on Serifs

We've already discussed the offence of poor font pairing. Absolutely, we did. This exact typographical faux pas requires its own legislation because it is so awful.

"Birds of a feather flock together," right? Wrong.

Seriously, two Serifs don't belong together. The phrase ‘fonts of a feather’ is still under development, however the sentiment is still valid! 

When used together, two serif typefaces create an unkempt mistake.

What to do instead:

Attempting to match a sans-serif (a typeface lacking serifs) and a serif typeface is another simple solution to avoid this calamity.

11- All Jammed Up

Incorporating as much as you can into a design won't improve it; it will only make it busier, more distracting, and unprofessional-looking.

Remember to move the typeface away from the corners and edges unless you're purposefully cutting something off, because sometimes spacing matters more than information density.

What to do instead:

Change your perspective (and try to convince your client to do the same)! You'll find it getting easier and easier to let your design breathe as you start seeing negative space as a valuable component of the design rather than as unused space.

Play around with the available space; adding more negative space can help you create a cleaner appearance. You can reduce the font size, scale down all or just some pieces, or sometimes a clever rearrangement of the individual components will work.

12- Illegible Text

If you consider this to be a complete "given," fantastic! We all adore hearing that! Though we do believe that occasionally, some people need to be reminded of this crime. You're not hitting the mark if the intended audience cannot read the material.

What to do instead:

Put "function" before "fashion." Of course, go for both if you can. As much as the next designer, we enjoy a gorgeous (type)face. However, if you can't have both, choose useful instead of fashionable.

Of course, if your goal is to play with wacky or strange fonts and your content doesn't need to be readable, just go ahead, my friend!

13- Random Rules

It might be time to let go of that loosey-goosey mentality for a hot second and follow some real guidelines. If you find yourself explaining why things are aligned a specific way or you’re repeatedly readjusting and readjusting until it "feels" right, you may need to rethink your design. "Ruler" is a concept for a reason.

What to do instead:

You need that massive grid energy to get back on track and make your type look practical and new. In other words, you better become genuinely enthusiastic about using grids. We should possess them, put them to use, and adore them as well.

14- Snooze Cruise

Nobody wins if you're not having fun and your design is a snooze-fest.

Not you, not your customer, and most definitely not the other major design nerds (that's us!) who can't wait to see what you come up with.

What to do instead:

Have fun with design, please! As much as it is motivated by the rules and norms we've discussed today, design is also driven by passion and curiosity. Hey, part of the reason we learn the rules is to break them in amusing, novel, and entertaining ways.

Now you're making great progress towards a crime-free design!

After reading about the worst typographic offences, we're sure you're ready to exchange your life of type-crime for one of excellent design. Though if you’re still struggling with making sensible design choices, we can help you!!

Just give us a BUZZ!

Why do you need a brand system?

First thing first, a brand system is the way design components work together to create a brand image. A strong brand system is the foundation of a successful business identity.

A brand system is a collection of design components that work together to form a cohesive entity. When used together, they allow all of your communication to speak in a single, consistent voice.

Creating a brand system is the first step in developing your company's brand and providing it with a visual and intellectual roadmap. It lays out a clear path for communicating a consistent narrative about who you are while also telling a captivating story.

Branding is important because it helps build a strong and memorable relationship with target audiences. A brand system is the actual expression of your organisation's brand promise through images and words. It conveys your organisation’s goals and values while also assisting audiences in understanding why you are important to them.

Connecting the user to the experience in a clear and concise manner

The particular strategy and research that goes into designing branding systems, with the objective of providing a consistent experience across any and all online and offline platforms, distinguishes today's branding landscape. Modern brand systems make it simple for target audiences to perceive visual signals in a comprehensive, often subconscious way.

You have the capacity to direct your brand's experience in an efficient, scalable, and far-reaching manner. It is both economical and time effective to provide your business with a clear way to represent its brand, and it may assist people, both internally and externally, better understand you as you evolve over time.

All of these touch-points are linked together to create a complicated — yet cohesive — picture of your brand. When we design a brand system, we integrate the following elements:

Logo: a picture, phrase, or shape that, when combined, conveys your company's name and mission. On a deeper level, it must also express your company's traits, ideals, and personality.

Brand Colour Palette: a distinct colour palette that shows your brand's individuality.

Brand Font: a collection of typefaces that communicate your brand's individuality. Because various typefaces elicit different emotions, selecting them is an art. Serif, san serif, and script are the three major types.

Brand mark: is a graphical symbol that serves as the primary visual representation of a brand.

Brand Pattern: a pattern created using elements of a logo, brand mark, or other graphical assets created during the creation of a brand identity.

Visual: any imagery or photography that has been art-directed, processed, or digitally transformed to reflect or represent the brand.

Typography: the use of brand typefaces in the size of paragraphs and content, as well as the interaction of messages with logos and other brand markings.

Video and motion:  Applying styles from the imagery category for any moving images

One of the best examples of a brand system is Airbnb's recent rebranding. For their broad audience and offerings, it strikes the right balance between consistency and vibrancy.

Building a brand system that is scalable

A brand system can include many elements, but it can also start with a few only, and expand over time. In the long run, some organisations need a brand system that's more stable and safe, while others need something more daring and impactful. How you develop your brand system depends greatly on your organisation's size and reach.

The core conceptual shelf life of an organisation's brand should not exceed five years in today's media landscape, which is why a core brand system is more and more useful. In today's world, you can't go 20 years without changing your brand, but your brand system allows your brand to evolve and expand.

A brand system is about putting your best collective self forward (words to live by, we know).

Show your audiences that your organisation's brand is accessible, approachable, and modern with the right language, colours, and symbolism.

How brand systems will evolve in the future

Considering how brand systems will evolve in the ever-changing media and communications landscape, we see a lot of overlap in digital domains with design systems, which are a series of components that can be reused in different combinations.

When integrating a brand on a website or mobile app, practical principles such as colour theory, typography, and photographic style will be critical in order to offer companies the voice they need to deliver compelling, engaging tales.

As you can see, this is the right moment for you to consider your brand system and its possible overhaul. Is it professional or sufficient? If you are uncertain about it...

Just give us a FREE BUZZ!