How to know when your design needs design
The world around us is constantly evolving. From new fashion trends to technological advancements to drastic culture shifts, change is happening at a faster rate than ever before and with it comes the challenging task of remaining relevant. While there are many routes to keep up with the times, one very powerful tool can go a long way: design.
Let’s be clear, design shifts don’t always have to be drastic to be impactful – you certainly don’t want to make changes just for the sake of change. Some brands may benefit from a simple shift in their color palette while others may be in need of a complete overhaul. Every case is unique and what works for one brand may be detrimental to another. So how do you know if your design needs design? Start by asking these questions:
Does your design need redesigning?
1. Does your design reflect your brand’s mission and values?
Who are you? What do you do? Why should I care? These are the questions that go through a consumer’s head when evaluating a brand. You want to be sure that your design reinforces the answers to these questions rather than sending mixed messages. Every visual element, from your logo to your photography style to your color palette, is an opportunity to express yourself. If you’re not effectively bridging the gap between who you are and how you look, your brand won’t resonate with people.
Learn More: Enabling a Consistent Brand Experience
2. Do you stand out from your competitors?
The last thing you want is for people to confuse your brand with one of your competitors. If you are getting lost in a sea of sameness among the competition, it might be time to revamp your design. Whether it’s shifting to a more ownable color palette or crafting a one-of-a-kind logo, there are many subtle tweaks that can be made to stand out among the crowd. Beware of relying too heavily on design trends, as this may lead you right back to where you started.
Image Source: Codo Design
3. Have your capabilities or product offerings changed?
Building a brand around a specific product or service may be a smart starting point to corner a niche market, but over time this can be a roadblock to growth. Take Dunkin’ Donuts for example – for nearly 70 years they were known solely as the donut place, but in the past few years they’ve dropped the “Donuts” to expand their menu offerings and keep up with an evolving industry.
4. Are you trying to connect with a new target audience?
While your design may have worked in the past to build a loyal customer base, you want to be sure it will hold up with your future audience. Design preferences look very different across age groups, genders, and cultural backgrounds so if you’re looking to reach new consumers, your design may need to evolve. The key is finding the balance between what your new demographic wants while being sure not to alienate your existing base.
5. Have you been a part of a merger or acquisition?
Frankenstein’s monster may be a great Halloween costume, but it is not a great approach to design. Far too often we see various brands merge and attempt to mash their separate identities into one, but this can lead to confusion and disconnect among your consumers. Instead, consider a design overhaul that unifies the various brands. Wondering what a successful merger rebrand looks like? Check out the work we did for Cella to unite their family of companies under one roof.
Learn More: Your Merger & Acquisition Playbook
Did these questions shed some light on a need for change? Looking for some guidance on next steps? We’d love to help! Connect with us on social or reach out to get the conversation started.