White Space

A strong design requires careful attention to both what’s there and what isn’t there. White space is important because it tells our brains which elements in the design are the most important. It helps us process these elements, both on their own and as part of the overall image.

What is White Space?

White space refers to the space left in between elements of your design. It is also often referred to as negative space. It is essential for a balanced and harmonious layout and without it your design would look cluttered and overcrowded. While the term used is white space, it does not necessarily mean it is white. The space may be any color or texture that represents the negative space in your design.

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Types of White Space

Passive White Space
This is the white space that occurs naturally, such as the area between words on a line or the space surrounding a logo or graphic element.
Active White Space
 This is the space left blank intentionally for better layout or structure. Active white space is often asymmetrical, which makes the design look more dynamic and active.
pass

Why is White Space Important?

Improves readability and comprehension

When text and images on the page are cluttered and overcrowded, it can make your design quite difficult to read and comprehend. Adding white space allows the reader or viewer to focus on the key message or design in front of them. This applies to both text and design elements. White space allows the reader to easily read and understand what they are viewing.

Highlights a key message or design element

White space is a creative and powerful way of drawing the reader or viewer to a particular element of the design. It is also a powerful way to create a certain mood or look in a design piece. It can create focus and highlight design elements by offering visual cues to which elements belong together and which are separate.

Increases visual appeal

White space creates focus, balance and reinforces quality and professionalism. It is visually appealing and creates a clean, relaxing visual effect.

whitespace

The general rule of thumb is less is more. Don’t overcrowd your design in an attempt to push your marketing message through. Strategic and thoughtful use of white space is important and will offer a more professional representation of your brand.

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Rebranding

Like anything in life, brands evolve with the times as their target audience changes or they have grown to offer new services. When first starting a company it can be difficult to know exactly who your future customers will be. You learn as you go along so your brand must evolve to meet your customer’s expectations.FortyTwo

When is it Time to Rebrand?

The decision to rebrand is usually made when a company feels that their brand does not match the company that they have become. Whether it is because you are no longer reaching your target market or because your brand has become dated. 

To reach a new audience

Your current brand may not be attracting the customers or clients you want. 

Values have changed

If your brand values and overall philosophy have changed leading you to take a different direction with your company, your brand should reflect these values. 

Outdated

If it’s been decades since you have updated your brand’s identity it may be time to determine what changes can modernize your look. These changes can be minor to major.

Refresh or Total Rebrand?

If you’ve decided that the company would benefit from rebranding, it’s time to determine the scale of this effort.

A Refresh

This is a lighter and more targeted effort. A simple refresh makes sense if a specific element of the brand could use a more contemporary take, as in the logo or product packaging look dated; or if there have been developments to the business, as in new products have been released.google-logos-1998-2015-020915

Google’s logo has gone through several refreshes throughout the years, all of which are relatively minimal. 

Total Rebrand 

This is a wide-reaching and high-effort brand overhaul. If a critical part of the business has changed—for instance you’re pursuing a completely new market, targeting a different demographic, selling a new core product, or are undergoing a merger/acquisition then it might make sense to do a total rebrand.doritos

Doritos newest logo gives a more action-oriented vibe. They have been promoting themselves as ‘bold’ and this logo reflects that sentiment. 

Rebranding Process

Define

Determine if a rebranding is needed and identify the specific reasons. 

Develop

Devise a plan to rebrand. Once you’ve identified the reason for the rebrand, you need to come up with an outline of how to achieve your goal. Include projected costs and a timeline indicating important targets.

Design

Visualize the Future. Developing the design includes testing for quality and functionality of the logo, font, and icons. They are developed inconjunction with the brand statement, story, and tagline in mind. This may take some time spent positioning all the elements of the design and tweaking it to perfection. 

Deliver

Implement the brand changes. Transition your brand to the new logo, product, etc. in accordance with your established plan. Update your business cards, letterhead, website and social media profiles as needed.

Rebranding is a big decision. The decision should be made with as much care as you took when you started your company.  Though your customers are changing, they still crave the comfort of familiarity. By mindfully taking advantage of your years of experience and paying close attention to your target market, you can navigate your business into the future. 

Redesigning Your Website

Nowadays, it’s extremely important for any business to have a nice looking and easy to use responsive website. Many people, while doing their research, check your company’s online presence along with your competitors before they contact you. Your company website is an essential element that users base their first impression on. iI done right, your website can be your 24/7 salesperson.

redesign

Outdated or Un-appealing

Companies go through a website redesign process for different reasons, but the main one is because it is an old looking site. You will not believe how many companies still have websites that look like they were done decades ago. Even people with no experience in web design can tell they’re outdated. This can hurt your business, especially if users are choosing between several competitors. Consumers will most likely go with a company that has a nice looking and easy to use website because it provides the assurance that the company is growing and on top of the latest trends and technologies.

Responsive

Not Mobile Friendly or Responsive

It was easy for companies to maintain their desktop-only sites several years ago when people didn’t use their mobile devices to shop, order food, do research and connect with their friends. Now more than 17% of all web traffic comes from mobile devices and 1 out of 4 internet users only access the internet on a mobile device. So, if your site isn’t responsive yet the chance you’re losing leads and maybe even customers are high. By incorporating responsive design into your website, you’ll be able to reach a larger audience.

Having a responsive website design means that your website has been built so that the structure, content, and images of the website all appear the same on any device. This means that customers will be able to easily use your website no matter the device they are using.

navigation

A website has about four seconds to make an impression before users hit the back button. When visitors reach your website, they want to quickly find the information they are looking for without too much digging. If it is too difficult for users to navigate through the different pages on your site, they will quickly become frustrated and turn to other sources for what they are trying to find. Ask yourself these questions when looking at your website:

  • Can you quickly sum up your core services?
  • Can you find the information you’re looking for?
  • Can you easily tell where you are on the site and see where you want to go next?
  • When you’re on a service or product page, is there a clear call to action to take you to the next step?

If you find yourself getting lost on your site and it takes you more than a few seconds to find the information you’re looking for, a redesign is probably in order.

Redesigning your website is a major task. It doesn’t matter if you do it yourself or hire a freelancer or agency to do it for you. A redesign not only involves time but also, an allocated budget.

Just remember, a well-designed website is one of the most effective marketing tools you have – make the most of it by keeping it fresh, up-to-date, and easy to use.

Branding: Defining Your Company

What Does Your Company Stand For?

Branding your company or service can be a great asset. Brand-driven advertisers understand this very well. They understand the emotional substructure of good advertising. If you don’t stir the heart, goes the reasoning, you can’t stir the pocketbook. That’s why Super Bowl advertisers will work hard— and spend millions to leave you laughing. Or crying. Or angry.

To build your brand, begin by thinking through exactly what it is you sell and why customers choose your product or service. Identify the promise you are making to your customers. For instance, you may manufacture vacuum cleaners, but what you’re really selling is a better way to clean house. You must also define what makes your product more desirable to the customers you’re targeting than that of your competition. With a strong brand, you don’t have to sell nearly as long or as hard. Customers know what you stand for before the pitch or proposal.

Here’s how to give your company the kind of brand identity that will help drive sales:

Define Your Personality
A successful  brand becomes an emotional bond that builds customer loyalty. A brand includes your logo, color scheme, taglines, slogan, design elements and more.

Build Recognition
You want the company personality to be easily identifiable at every customer touch point, from word of mouth to final sale. Make sure that every bit and byte of packaging, presentations, communications, and marketing speaks with a brand-consistent look and voice. That includes vehicle graphics, trade show displays and booths, storefront or office signage, banners and web ads, print ads, posters and point of purchase displays, in other words, everything.

Get Inside the customer’s mind
You need a serious fix on what will propel people to buy so you can gear your messages accordingly.  Ask yourself: what need will you fill for the customer? What problem can you solve? How can I make it easier for them? Once you know that, you know what will trigger a market response.

But defining what that brand is and what it will mean to your customers is complicated. When counting your abstract assets, for instance, try putting the customer relationship AHEAD of brand on the ledger sheet. And the product? Channel money into making it the best it can be, both in quality and in the manner it satisfies your customers’ deepest desires. Let those two things drive how you communicate with your market, and you’ll have a powerful branding strategy that pushes the numbers up on your balance sheet.