Identity design is often described simply as “getting a new logo.” But when approached with an eye on both impact and longevity, there is essential work that comes before and after the design of a logo, or brand mark, itself.
Questions Before Answers
Prior to putting any thought into what a new identity will look like, we ask questions — in either an informal or formal process, depending on your appetite for this type of collaboration and your budget.
Whether through an interview or a series of conversations and exercises, we reach an understanding of your organization’s:
- internal values and operational realities
- position among colleague and competitor organizations
Making a Mark
Once we have a grasp of those factors, we develop a logo (or brand mark) that authentically and uniquely captures the essence of your organization — in a manner that speaks to the future you intend to help shape in the communities you touch.
Our logos don’t have a house “style.” We pride ourselves on creating logos that vary from one to the next because the organizations and companies we work with vary, and we think the best job we can do is connect with your organization’s unique story.
Grounding the Logo in Color and Type
Once the logo is completed, at a minimum, we look at the fonts and colors that will further help to paint a fitting, quickly understood and memorable picture of your organization.
Generally, the design of business stationery is included in this primary identity design phase. When a client values the guidance design can provide in planning an overall “look and tone” for all communications, we continue the discovery and development process to include templates for the various types of visual communication — print and electronic — that you use to reach and create dialog with your public(s). Such a program may extend to entire literature systems, newsletters, conference displays/environments, websites, or more.
Carrying the Logo Forward
To ensure visual consistency as you use your new identity to distinguish your organization, we offer creation of an Identity Guidelines document.
Guidelines are meant for internal use, and to be provided to all designers and vendors who might have a hand in creating your communications.
Depending on the scope of our work together, the Identity Guidelines document may be as simple as a concise four- to six-page outline containing:
- illustrations of the logo design in all color treatments
- basic recommendations for handling of placement and proper use of the logo
- sample settings of fonts
- the basic color palette
Or it may incorporate an all-inclusive program for communication design including:
- comprehensive guidelines with illustrations of uses and treatments — both recommended and forbidden — of the logo
- thorough illustration of all planned font usage treatments as would appear in various types of communications
- a full color palette including color equivalents formulated for all types of color environments (print and electronic)
- electronic document templates for stationery and various types of communication media
Our goal is to create a logo and identity system that connects with the essential story of your organization, and that will serve you well for years into the future.