There is often a misconception that branding is JUST about logo design, when in reality it is SO much more than that. Strategic branding dives deeper and will help you to share who you are, what you do, and why you do it. To help break down the deets and unravel that mystery, we decided to write the Brand Building Blocks series. Each post will hone in on one particular aspect of a brand, from the basics of strategy to the different creative pieces.
What tone is your brand trying to communicate? Does your type help you tell your story?
One of the most used puzzle pieces in your brand is your typography. While they may not be the star of every design, the typefaces you choose will be in almost everything in your brand. Getting your typography right is a huge part of how your brand will communicate.
When you craft your brand identity as a whole you need to consider how your typography will fit into the big picture. Your brand's typography doesn't only mean the fonts you choose for your logo's design, it includes getting specific about what typefaces you'll use in every part of your brand.
Fonts have moods and tones
There are a handful of typography styles, and they all have inherent moods, tones, and connotations. When it comes time to settle on typefaces for your brand, ask yourself what vibe you want your brand to give off. The typography you choose should mirror your brand.
Although each typeface is unique, usually you can rely on a Sans Serif font (think Helvetica) to feel more clean and modern. Serifs (like Georgia) are usually viewed as more classic or established. And most script fonts (i.e. Wisdom Script) tend to feel more feminine. Again, these aren't true for every typeface that falls under these descriptors, but it should give you a great place to start your search!
Type creates hierarchy
Typography for your brand isn't just about picking a font. It's about establishing how the typeface(s) you choose will work together. Establishing your type hierarchy is a great way to not only build brand consistency, but to ensure the type you're using flows together to tell your brand story in the clearest way.
To create great hierarchy, think about how your logo typography, headlines, subheads, body copy, and any accent fonts would look together. Even if you are only using a single typeface throughout your brand, get specific about how that type will be styled to create a hierarchy. Maybe you'll use all caps on your headlines and bold the same typeface for your subheadings. Whatever you choose, your typography should have fairly easy to follow guidelines.
Our challenge to you.
As we always urge you to in these posts, if you already have typography for your brand, take this time to evaluate if it's still working for you. If you are just starting to build your brand, we challenge you to consider the following as you craft your brand standards.
Some font styles just look better together than others. If your fonts feel like they're all trying to be the hero, chances are they aren't meant to live together. So if you're using more than one font, remember that contrast is key.
We'd challenge you to start create a Pinterest board and pin images that use type you love. What styles are they pairing together? Do any of those fit your brand?
Number of fonts
If you're a font lover, it can be tempting to want to pick multiple of your favorite faces and go to town, but we always recommend your brand standards include no more than 2-3 typefaces. The more typefaces you combine, the sooner you will lose the hierarchy you're looking to create with your type. When there is too much going on, people won't know where to start.
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