Creating a Unique Brand Voice Through Typography
20.11.20Reading Time 3 MINUTES
Typography. Noun. taɪˈpɒɡ.rə.fi
The art and technique of arranging type to make written language legible, readable, and appealing when displayed…
Typography is all-powerful.
It can deliver a hefty slice of groundbreaking design, or it can whisper subtle persuasion to your subconscious. Either way, typography is one of the key areas of branding and is often the bedrock of any successful identity.
Getting to the bottom of what our clients brand represents is our primary goal. With a deep understanding of this we can create a brand that embodies the organisation and communicates their personality to their clients or customers. One of the key mediums that enable us to deliver that message is the typography used in the brand, from the logotype to the supporting typefaces used within brand collateral.
Some of the world’s biggest brands rely heavily on their typography within their visual language. Look at Google, IBM, Coca Cola, eBay, Paypal, Cadbury and Lego. Each of these logos are iconic, distinctive and are often the first visual identifier for the brand, meaning they need to work hard to convey the brand personality.
So how do you get that personality across with just a few letters?
There are lots of factors at work here that many people overlook. These can include type classifications i.e script, serif, condensed, handwritten etc., whether the logo is uppercase or lowercase, the weight of the font, the typeface itself, and the colour of the logo. Even adding a full stop at the end of the logotype can deliver a slightly different message.
How do you pick the right typeface for your brand? This comes down to your brand archetypes (the values, behaviours and messages that make out your personality). For example, if your business is a gentle, ethical skincare brand, you are best to stay away from bold, sharp serifs. Instead, a lower-case sans serif in a lighter font weight, matched with a neural colour set will start to convey the feeling of a softer and more humanist brand.
Coca Cola knows the drill…
Picture a bottle of Coca Cola – I’m sure you can visualise that distinctive bottle silhouette, that deep red from the label and of course the flowing, looping white calligraphy. Coca Cola is one of the biggest brands in the world and you can put that down to a lot of factors; the consistency of their product quality, strong targeted marketing and clever ad campaigns. But one of the key factors that make it so memorable is their brand recognition and unique logotype which has remained largely the same since it was trademarked in the late 1800s. The typography is classic, energetic and inviting, and gives it a signature feel which is identifiable all around the globe.
Our process and building bespoke type
When we approach a logo design as part of a branding project, we first decide what category of typography should be used, then consider the weight and case of the type as these are key considerations that can completely alter the perception of the logotype.
We often manipulate the letterforms to create new and unique characteristics, making the logotype more identifiable.
In some cases, we even develop a fully bespoke logotype where we design each individual letter, creating something completely unique to that client. Creating typefaces is an art-form in itself and takes time and skill to craft consistent matching letters that fit together to create a full set.
In summary, typography is essential, so please don’t overlook this indispensable tool. It gives a designer the power to target an audience, shape that audience’s perceptions, craft a unique and instantly identifiable identity and enables the brand to tell better stories.