By Kate Hayden, Designer.
Join asabell Designer, Kate, for an exploration of brand trends in 2017.
Let’s start with the basics. What is a ‘brand’? Well, from my point of view, it’s the public-facing personality of your organisation. It’s what makes you unique. It’s how people remember you.
A successful brand needs to be instantly recognisable, which is why big companies, such as Coca-Cola, McDonalds and Apple, have spent millions of dollars developing and evolving their brands over the years.
It sounds like a contradiction, but the truth is that brands have to change, in order to stay recognisable. After all, if your branding doesn’t evolve in line with current trends, it’ll most likely fade away and be forgotten altogether.
So, the question I’d like to take a crack at answering next is: what trends are dictating branding today?
A decade of change.
To answer the question, we need to take a look at how things have changed over the past decade.
With logos, gone are the intricate designs of the 90s, and in their place we’re seeing simple, flat designs. Colours remain fundamentally the same — it’s risky to change your core brand colours after years of building up that recognisability.
But it’s fonts where we’ve seen the biggest transformation.
Simple, linear fonts (like Helvetica, the designer’s font of choice) are taking centre stage — they’re easy to read and look effortlessly professional, what’s not to love? Many companies have also changed to a lowercase font, maybe to look friendly and approachable instead of a bit shouty. Look at the logos of Next and Facebook for examples of this.
The tech angle.
We know what branding trends look like today, but what are the catalysts for these changes?
I believe it’s all about technology. For the last few years, the web has had an influence on graphic design that’s almost too significant to comprehend. And as the web evolves, so does design and branding.
Sites are becoming slicker and more streamlined. The consumer doesn’t have time to wait for intricate pages to load and won’t sift through a mass of pretty pictures to find what they want. As a result, branding and design has become simpler and more minimalistic, giving companies a straightforward look that will load quickly and work with their responsive website.
And that’s another thing worth pointing out — in 2017 your website HAS to be responsive.
The massive shift came with the rise of mobile devices, which are now the most used technology for browsing the internet.
With the web at your customers’ fingertips 24/7, your brand needs to keep up with the times, while still being instantly recognisable. That means responsive design — which allows users to experience your brand consistently, no matter what device they’re using — is now a must.
In fact, I’d predict that responsive design will be one of, if not THE, major influence on branding in years to come.
Get in touch.
As you can probably tell, I like talking about design! So, if you want to have a chat about your company’s design or branding, get in touch today.
Give asabell a call on 01454 326 498, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.