DESIGN@WORK

“What Is Branding?” by David Brier

Couldn’t have said it better myself! Enjoy…

Visit DBD International for more insights by this Fast Company blogger and brand innovator.

Via Design Taxi

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The Ups and Downs of Fixing a Brand

While working on an update to my portfolio and this website, I happened to go back and count how many logos I’ve designed over the years. Just to remind myself where I’ve been, I guess. (The number is somewhere around 60.) A bunch were created from scratch for newly branded companies, but most were redos of existing logos.

It’s always a thrill to try to distill the ambitions of an enterprise into a tiny piece of art that will represent them wherever they go. And redesigning an existing brand has its own special set of challenges.

Veritable Vegetable Logo & Branding

Before & After: Veritable Vegetable

The Ups

There are a number of ways fixing an existing brand can be a little easier than starting from scratch. Here are a few:

  1. We learn from the mistakes of the past — what is not working is glaringly obvious.
  2. Leadership has the benefit of knowing the ins and outs of their business strategy, audiences, and marketing smarts, which paves the road to a solid creative strategy.
  3. There is actual marketing collateral to work with, so the proof of concept just got easier.
  4. There can be existing elements we can salvaged — sometimes it’s good to keep some bathwater.
  5. If the project is definitely moving forward, there is probably strong agreement that it needs fixing!

The Downs

Of course, when some things are easy, others are hard:

  1. Some individuals inside and outside the company may be very attached to the existing brand, possibly creating roadblocks.
  2. Once the new brand is done, it can be difficult to get everyone on board with making the switch and using it correctly.
  3. Along the same vein, it can be difficult to get some team members on board to see the brand in a new way, especially during concept development.
  4. A rebrand requires a total re-do of all of the company’s collateral with the new look and feel, and the new approach to the copy.
  5. There is a bit of work required with thoughtfully rolling out a new logo and identity to your audiences to help them with the transition.

Of course, the company’s leadership needs to decide whether the benefits of a fresh brand outweigh the challenges that lie ahead for their team (usually “Yes!”). We do the heavy lifting to make the process seamless, enjoyable even. Click here for examples of brands we’ve face-lifted.

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Marsala: Pantone Color of the Year 2015!

Marsala, Pantone Color of the Year

Images courtesy of Pantone Inc.

Pantone chipWhat better way to kick off the New Year with the latest “Color of the Year” from Pantone? Each year, the color-trend company chooses one hue they believe will set the colorway for design for the years to follow.

While past colors have been much brighter than this one, this year’s winner, “Marsala,” has a beautifully rich resonance to it. This sophisticated, more neutral tone will probably be absolutely stunning in home décor and fashion, neutral for the first and flattering to most skin tones for the second. However, I am not certain how well it will translate to ink and web design! As evidenced on the Pantone website, the color feels a bit flat in RGB.

Pantone writes:

Much like the fortified wine that gives Marsala its name, this tasteful hue embodies the satisfying richness of a fulfilling meal while its grounding red-brown roots emanate a sophisticated, natural earthiness.

Learn more about why Pantone chose this color »

So when you are ready to redesign your living room, keep an eye open for colors that will go with this one because we should start to see it pop up in products and clothing over the next year or so. And you might even prepare to redo all your other rooms as Pantone leads us down this sultry, earthy color way.

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Examples of how Marsala might be used.

Examples of how Marsala might be used.

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Inspiration: 10 Great Business Card Ideas

Aren’t you so bored of your 3.5″ x 2″ 4-color business card? Well, let’s push it out of the rectangle! Print doesn’t get much attention in these days of the Interwebs and Facebooks, but there are a few places where putting the effort into something really unique is worth it. Especially if you actually hand your business card to another person, making it remarkable will make you memorable. Here are some inspiring examples. See more on the original post »

1. Make-up Artist

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Advertising Agency: OpusMúltipla, Curitiba, Brazil

2. Framing Company

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Advertising Agency: Piko, Moldova

3. Fitness Trainer

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Advertising Agency: Leo Burnett, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

4. Sommelier

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Caserne

5. Bike Technician

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Rethink Canada

6. Dentist

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7. Smoke Shop

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Advertising Agency: Bos, Toronto, Canada

8. Investment Representative

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Advertising Agency: Rethink Canada

9. Yoga Center

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10. Divorce Attorney

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via Bored Panda

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Introducing The Dog Studio

Introducing The Dog Studio

AJ-MT-Shopped-SMA fresh approach to greeting cards and social stationery for dog lovers.

I’m excited to finally share my big news with you! For the past few months, I’ve been working hard at starting up an exciting venture with my sister, renown dog photographer Amanda Jones, and my brother-in-law Chris Jones. Our new company, The Dog Studio, pairs Amanda’s stunning dog portraits with my enthusiasm for beautiful design to create contemporary stationery and cards — and eventually gifts and home items. Very soon we will be releasing products that dog lovers (and lovers of dog lovers) across America will go crazy for! We hope.

Ultimately, we want to influence the quality of dog imagery used on products everywhere. And make beautiful cards and gifts. Our goal is to create products that are unique, smart and beautiful while giving back to the dog community. For that, we have created a “Royalties to the Rescue” program that makes financial and product donations to groups that help shelter dogs.

Here’s an example of our cards…

The Dog Studio Greeting Cards

The Dog Studio Greeting Cards

We will be launching to the resale trade in May at the National Stationery Show in New York City. In September we hope to launch our online store so everyone can buy one! Or two or twelve.

We hope you’ll come along for the ride! Learn more about it and how you can keep up with us at www.thedogstudio.com.

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