Ben Cooper, one of Indigo Ross’ designers specialising in brand identity, explains great design and the importance of mastering a compelling visual presence and the common pitfalls companies can avoid when re-branding.
With over five years’ experience working with a wide range of brands in the UK, Ben knows what it takes to elevate a business through stand-out design.
“You need good design to bring a marketing strategy to life; to make it real and tangible”
In a world where every business is competing for customer attention, you need to do everything within your power stand out from the pack and get your company seen. A marketing strategy is fundamental to this but what is the value of a marketing strategy if it doesn’t have the design to back it up? “It’s all well and good having a marketing strategy but you need good design to bring it to life and make it real and tangible,” Ben explains.
“You can’t have brand identity without great design”
Marketing will generate interest in your brand, but it is beautiful design that completes your brand identity. “You can’t have brand identity without great design”, Ben states.
He specialises in end-to-end branding from initial concepts and strategy through to execution across print and digital assets. It is this part of graphic design that he enjoys the most and believes bring most value to businesses. “Brand identity is the way a business visually presents themselves to the world. It’s the designer’s job to impact how a business visually tells its story and ultimately determine how the world perceives its brand.”
“A logo can influence everything at every level”
It takes a matter of seconds to leave an impression on a potential customer, so having a strong brand to present to the customer is pivotal and will determine if you’re noticed and remembered or if you get left behind and forgotten. At the forefront of brand identity is the logo and this is usually the first thing people will associate with your brand. This mark is the foundation of your identity, it separates you from competition, grabs attention and fosters brand loyalty and as Ben states “a logo can influence everything at every level.”
He adds: “The process of logo creation at Indigo Ross, starts with initial onboarding meetings with the client, then an in-depth research phase. What follows is a meticulous creative journey full of sketches, mood boards and multiple design routes. There are several iterations internally before we present our favourite routes to the client. The projects tend to start with logo design and agreed brand deliverables. Once the client falls in love with an approach, we go on to designing the printed and online collateral.”
“Consistency and cohesion are key to aligning your online presence with print assets”
It’s important to provide a clear, cohesive, and consistent brand experience for the customer, whether that experience is picking up and reading a brochure or scrolling through a website. There’s no point focusing all your attention and budget on a slick, professional website if your print collateral is dated and unattractive. Your marketing collateral is the roadmap for your customer’s journey, and you want to make this journey as clear and easy as possible to ensure leads are converted into sales.
Having a distinct visual identity that is consistent across your marketing channels builds trust, recognition and awareness. It is therefore paramount that your print and digital materials feel like a suite from the same family.
Ben emphasises: “Consistency and cohesion are key to aligning your online presence with print assets.”
He goes on to explain how Indigo Ross are in a unique position in helping clients to achieve this. “We’re a boutique one-stop shop and that is a huge asset to making everything cohesive. We produce everything under one roof and our core team communicates constantly so designers, copywriters and production managers are always on the same page. Our quality control is so tight.”
“If you stay stagnant or still, you’ll get left behind”
Working with external experts can push your business forwards as they’re always at the forefront of evolving trends. “Sometimes you need an outsider’s pair of eyes and perspective to come in and shake things up. You need to be rigorous with your graphic design. Trends move and change all the time and it’s important you adapt and keep up. If you stay stagnant or still, you’ll get left behind,” he explains.
Ben also adds that he believes it’s good to be different. “Your brand needs to be unique; it shouldn’t copy what everyone else is doing you’ve got find your special. That’s what we’re here to do, to help clients stand out and get seen.”
“Important to find a design agency that fits your business and style”
Ben’s advice to anyone looking to invest in graphic design is to do your research. “Design is so subjective, so it’s really important for companies who are looking to update their visual identity to do their research first before jumping in to working with an agency. There is so much variety in the creative industry and it’s important to find a design partner that fits your business and style.”