Here is another project which showcases the consistent use of image branding elements as I talked about in my post Brand Image Tips for Small business Owners.
I started working with Restore North Shore, a Chicago remodeling company, a few years back …creating a set of basic brand image elements for them … logo, color palette, type face selection. These element were then integrated into a website and more recently I have created Lawn signs, Car Magnets and t-shirts, working from the elements I originally established.
And here are the branding elements all working together, delivering a strong and consistent look for this small Chicago business.
in Chicago Branding, Chicago Graphic Design, Chicago Web Designer
There is something very satisfying about redesign projects.Â We were contacted recently by Chicago based Quadra Applications & Technology, who were looking for a new logo design. They already had a new website in the works and felt the time was right for a revamp of their identity- their main request wasÂ something that looked more professional.
In redesigning a logo it is not uncommon to work from some element of the old logo, whether it be the color palette, style of font or icon.Â In the case of Quadra we adopted the cube of their original logo, reworking it to encompass a sphere and connective framework. Teamed with a modern open typeface the new logo is much more fitting for the IT market they serve.
and here is the logo on the new website www.quadra-ati.com
in Before and After, Chicago Branding, Chicago Graphic Design, Logo Work
I talked yesterday about the elements of Brand Image and how building a style guide can help ensure your brand image elements are used in a consistent way thus ensure a strong brand image.
Well here is a great example of using brand image elements consistently, in thisÂ piece of work I completed recently for MAC. The look and feel of thisÂ product sheet fits in beautifully with the rest of their promotional pieces, website, business card etc. by using a predetermined color palette, typeface typesetting, layout and logo treatment.
Collection of other graphic design pieces produced for MAC
in Chicago Branding, Chicago Graphic Design
Developing a killer brand image is not somethingÂ reserved for big corporations such as Pepsi or Apple. A professional and memorable brand image is just as achievable by a small business,Â here are a few tips to get you on your way.
Define your brand image elements
A carefully crafted collection of brand assets will create an impression with your customers as to your products and services and in essence give them a “gut feeling” about your company. They should evoke something positive, unique and instant. A brand image is not built from a single element like a logo but a collection of elements including;
- Â Logo
- Â Icons
- Color palette – with primary, secondary and tertiary colors,
- Type faces
- Type setting
- Tag Line
even things like
- Scents – ever noticed a distinct scent when you enter a store such as Holister or even IKEA?
- Texture- think about the texture of bags used in packaging
- Sound – recognize this
- Decor – In a bricks and mortar business does your decor enhance why your are trying to convey with the reset of your brand assets?
- Writing Voice
Creating your brand asset collection is no small feat and is generally the result of extensive research into the market you want to serve and the type of image you want to portray and the experience you want your clients to have.
Create a Branding Style Guide
Once you have established you brand assets it is really useful to create a style guide to optimize the use of your branding elements. For example
- Logo usage – minimum size, orientation, optimum white space border, use in black and white, position
- Colors – color combinations, definition of colors in terms of pantone, RGB, CMYK and hex e.g ( #000000)
- Type Face- Font choices, sizes, colors and line spacing
- Imagery- styling of imagery- think borders, angles, image filters etc.
Used your brand elements consistently
Your brand image will be most powerful when you use your brand elements consistently, ensuring your clientsÂ receive the same experience no matter how they interact with you.
Here are some of the places where you need to ensure it is used consistently
- Web site
- Social media profiles such as Facebook and Twitter
- Business card
- Email signature
- Powerpoint presentations
- Sales collateral such as brochures/flyers
- sales tags
This list could go on and on but once you start down the road of applying your brand assets to your business tools it becomes easier to use your brand assets than not.
As 2012 rolls to a close I like to take a look back at some of the projects Iâ€™ve worked on over the year. It’s been aÂ real mixed bagÂ but I must have enjoyed myself as the year has flown by.Â I have created websites, logos, brochures,Â illustrations for a book, power point graphics, car magnets, lawn signs, business cards, mobile websites, e commerce sites, an icon for one of the largest banks in America and even the cover for a book.Â My clients have been located both here in Chicago and a little further further afield… St Louis,Â Louisville,Â Wentzville and further away still … Belgium. There are no geographical boundaries for the Chicago Web Designer – your creative partner.
So here is a little showcase of my 2012 web and graphic work
January:Â Powerpoint graphics for a large national bank
February:Â Web concept project for a St Louis bank
March: WordPress conversion project for Ruth Hasser
April: Identity design for Select Food Sales
May: Community Website for the Humble Catholic
June: New website and branding elements for Restore North Shore
July: Refresh of Lincolnshire Academy of Dance
August: Rework of The Rockwood
September:Â e commerce site-Â Zagros Robotics
October: Illustrations and cover design for book: Mr Bison’s Journal
November: Responsive web site design for Mr Bison
December: Identity deign for InDeBom
I am looking forward to another bag of design challenges in 2013!
in Chicago Branding, Chicago Graphic Design, Chicago Web Designer, Illustration, Logo Work, Web Design Projects, Wordpress
I recently discovered Lyle’s Golden Syrup in my grocery store, no big deal you think, but if come from the UK and enjoy the odd bit of baking… as I do…Â it was like finding liquid gold.
So why is this tin of Golden Syrup being featured on a blog about web and graphic design?
Take a look at the logo.
It is a dead lion with bees buzzing around it.Â I think if I presented a client with a logo, featuring an animalÂ carcass,Â to be used on a food product, in this day and age, I would get shot down in flames and become a laughing stock.Â But this particular logo has endured the test of time. Not only has it remained virtually unchanged for over 100 years it has beenÂ confirmed by The Guinness World Records as the world’s oldest brand.
The trademark was registered in 1904 by Lyle and the design is reference to a story in the Old Testament, in which Samson killed a lion, then saw that bees had formed a honeycomb in the lionâ€™s carcass , â€śOut of the strong came forth sweetnessâ€ť. Owner Abram Lyle was a highly religious man.
Long may they continue to use this amazing logo.
in Chicago Branding, Design Snippets, Logo Work
A quick Google search for “Chicago web design company” producing a whopping 68,700,000 results. This is a big town and there are lots of players. Not every design firm will be right for every project and finding a company you are comfortable working with and a good fit for your project, can be a challenge.
Here is a brief snapshot of what we offer
- Design Services
- Web site design
- Web redesign, we can rework what you already have to bring it up to date
- Blog design
- WordPress templates
- Identity design, including logo, letterhead and business cards
- Complete corporate branding
- Graphic design for projects such as brochures, posters, trade show banners, advertisements etc
- Presentations, powerpoint
- Email templates
- Banner ads
- Web Services
- Domain registration
- Web hosting
- Website coding – need a design turned into a working website?
- Marketing Services
- Search Engine Optimization ( SEO) and keyword analysis
- Pay per click programs e.g Google Adsense
- Social networking e.g Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn
- Video internet marketing
We have been in business since 2000 and have many very happy clients under our belt, see what some of them have to say here
We are located in Lincolnshire, in the North Shore area of Chicago.
Â© 2011 Chicago Web Designer
in Chicago Branding, Chicago Graphic Design, Chicago Web Designer
I am working on a couple of branding projects at the moment, one is creating everything from scratch ( see the start here)Â and the other is a brand consistency project.
Is your brand image consistent? Do your customers have the same experience however they interact with you. From visiting your web site, to paging through a brochure or even receiving and invoice, all these interactions offer an opportunity to convey your unique message. Lack of consistency creates confusion and sends conflicting messages to your clients.
For example your web site projects an air of professionalism and trust through design, a well thought out color palette, fonts, imagery and excellent copy. Does that image carry through to your brochures, folders,Â flyers or whatever other marketing pieces you use, or have they been hastily put together with no thought as to what they communicate?
Here is brand consistency in action, from web site through to presentation folder and DVD labeling the client is getting the same message.
Â©: 2011 Chicago web designer
in Before and After, Chicago Branding, Chicago Graphic Design, Chicago Web Designer
Full image brandingÂ is one of my favorite type of projects and I am delighted to be creating brand and marketing materialsÂ for a Chicago home remodeling company, Restore North Shore. The project is moving at quite a pace and there is nothing like a deadline to get things moving along.Â Â It is energizing.
The project started on Monday this week and by Tuesday at noon the client needed business cards to hand out at an open house. In that short space of time I designed the logo,Â established the color palette,Â selected a corporate typeface, designed a business card and got full client approval along the way via our online project progressÂ system.Â Phew!
There was no time to get the business cards professionally printed so I took a pdf of the file to a Fedex Office (the one here in Lincolnshire IL is great) where they printed it on card stock using a laser printer and I cut the cards down in their store. While they are only temporary the quality was pretty good and plenty got passed out at a very successful open house in Wilmette.
I will be starting work on the web site tomorrow. It will feature lots of before and after photos showcasing the fabulous work of Restore North Shore. Prepare to be blown away.
Â©: 2011 Chicago Web Designer
in Chicago Branding, Chicago Graphic Design, Chicago Web Designer, In Progress, Logo Work
Switching out an old logo with a new one can sometimes pose a few challenges.
- The footprint is substantially different, wider or taller, and the allotted logo area can’t accommodate.
- Color issues. Too much or too little contrast, color clashes.
- Look and feel – is the look and feel of the logo in keeping with the rest of the site.
In this particular logo switch we had an issue with color contrast as you can see below, the new logo just did not pop against the background.
Adding a dynamic star burst solved the problem.
Â©: 2010 Chicago Web Designer
in Before and After, Chicago Branding, Logo Work