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Design


Making the Case for a Rebrand

Making the Case for a Rebrand

Rebrands are for Firebrands Not everything in the branding world is relatable. For the average person, chatting about go-to-market strategies or employer brands isn’t exactly scintillating dinner party conversation. But there is one thing that ignites fiery debate and criticism, even from those without any skin in the game, and that is the curious case of the rebrand. I’ve had multiple conversations with people who, though they have never expressed an interest in any other aspect of branding before, suddenly discuss the latest logo change, mission rewrite, or app redesign with a passion...
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Design Trends for 2019

Design Trends for 2019

Friction Builds Character Friction is one of those words you see in Silicon Valley all the time. Specifically, in technology’s promise to remove it. A frictionless experience is instantly digestible, seamless, clean. The only problem is that in desperately trying to remove the friction from every experience, you can remove the experience altogether. A little friction, intrigue, or mystery is not always a bad thing – especially when it comes to design. As we look forward to 2019, we have talked about trends for employer branding and overcoming strategic challenges. Today, we turn our sights...
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Great Design Shifts Perception

Great Design Shifts Perception

One of my favorite quotes about identity comes from American architect, author, and designer, Buckminster Fuller. “Ninety-nine percent of you who are,” he says, “is invisible and untouchable.” No matter how much we think we understand, there is always something unseen and overlooked humming beneath the surface. Great design can function in a similar way. A logo or a car engine each has a tip-of-the-iceberg function that appears obvious. But behind every glyph and gear, there is an invisible force that has the power to fundamentally shift how we think about and move through the world. Great...
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The Role of Voice Technology for Brands

The Role of Voice Technology for Brands

Voice Technology Is Older Than You Think Voice is the newest technology platform on the block. And like all seemingly new things, it’s actually much older than you think. In the early 1960s, IBM introduced the Shoebox, an early effort at mastering voice recognition. This bulky little machine could recognize 16 words spoken into its microphone and convert those sounds into electrical impulses. Basically, it was a voice-operated calculator. Dressed in a tuxedo at the 1962 World’s Fair in Seattle, developer William C. Dersch performed the miracle of turning your voice into a search engine....
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The Key Difference Between Graphic Design and Branding


The Key Difference Between Graphic Design and Branding


Graphic Design vs. Branding Brand is a dirty word. It’s misunderstood and misused by people in and out of the industry. Some people think it means a new logo. Others, an advertisement. And as a company that has “Brand” in its very name, we spend a fair amount of time educating exactly what this word means. Today, we dive into a key distinction: the difference between graphic design and branding. That may seem basic, but you’d be surprised by how many projects are stymied by this lack of clarification. Understanding this distinction is a crucial first step in creating a visual identity that...
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On Creating Resonant Digital Brand Experiences Today

On Creating Resonant Digital Brand Experiences Today

Digital Brand Experiences We asked our design team about their point of view on building resonant digital brand experiences today. Here’s what they said. Historically, brands used to rely heavily on brand marketing and advertising for awareness of their products and services. But in the digital age, many brands are born solely online or as an app. In essence, screen only experience(s). What makes some of these brands good vs. great? Great digital brands are true utilities. Once you get into someone’s life and seamlessly integrate into their everyday, that’s when you find success as a...
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Personalization Can Drive Meaning For Brands

Personalization Can Drive Meaning For Brands

What helps create a truly meaningful brand? A flawlessly articulated purpose? A killer logo? A leadership team that really understands the value of brand? Complete internal alignment? Oftentimes, the interplay of many different brand elements work together to create cohesive and lasting meaning. But one element that is gaining value in the world of branding is personalization. Right now, personalization is “in” with brands. Mass consumption and mass production are becoming things of the past. These days, brands that matter and resonate with people are the ones that feel like they’re...
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Enabler Brands Are Inspiring, Too!

Enabler Brands Are Inspiring, Too!

Disruptor vs. Enabler Brands These days, disruptor brands get all the attention. Companies like Airbnb, Netflix, and Uber have each skyrocketed into popularity by rattling the industries they came from. We get it. There’s something inherently inciting, even American, about the idea of taking down the big guys with your off-kilter vision of the future. It’s easy to root for. But here’s the thing about trailblazers — if everyone blazes their own unique trail, customers are faced with a dizzying network of singular (and often incompatible) solutions. In the course of one day, a person might...
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The Balancing Act of Creative Direction

The Balancing Act of Creative Direction

The Journey Is the Destination When I was studying fiction at San Francisco State University, I had a professor that used to say, “If you know exactly what you want to write about, then why are you writing it?” It was a soft-ball criticism aimed at a particular kind of writer. Those that came in overconfident, inflexible, and usually with their entire story already mapped out beat for beat. In their rigid defense of what they thought the story should be, they missed the opportunity to truly discover what it is or what it could be. If there’s no journey of discovery, no unanswered questions...
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