We’re distracted. The abundant amount of information and technology in the marketplace can make it difficult to focus on our own agenda and leap on opportunities when they are presented. This year, the How Design Live 2017 conference encouraged design and marketing professionals to speak up and not let the business process kill their creativity. To help organizations like yours who are continually reinventing themselves, we are cutting through the noise and giving you a breakdown of some of the top takeaways and design trends from our journey to HOW Design Live 2017.

Logo Encyclopedia Tells All
Bill Gardner, the founder of the LogoLounge, an online resource for designers and marketers, provides you with the opportunity to search over a quarter million logos and stay ahead of trends in typography, iconography, and color. Gardner identifies the top traits among these logos and what characteristics are currently being implemented in today’s corporate landscape.

Top Trends Identified by LogoLounge:

Shadow Breaks: Lifts off page
Fades: Connectivity between shape and page
Rising Color: Pathways, change, process
Simplicity: Objects/lines often don’t touch each other
Simple Overlay: Transparency
Multi-Centric: “Radiating”, rounded off lines
Ellipsis: 3 dots
Text Boxes: Boxes enclosing text
Yin Yang: Contrary forces working together, companionship
Pasta Bends: Highly rendered, shadowed, 3D
Wrapped: Field on top of shape
Micro lines: Thinnest of lines combined, provides depth with halftones
Doubles: 2 things interconnect into 1
Wings: Aspirational, uplifting
Color Split: Color change in line segment

Compared to last year, simplicity is still a key factor in most logo designs. While these trends are hot right now, it is important to push trends forward and not make your brand fit the trend.

Designing for the Future
Founder of the Dieline, the world’s most visited packaging design website, Andrew Gibbs explains how we use our culture and visual communicators to influence our brands, products, and services. To design for the future, we need to examine influencing brands and how consumers interact with them.

Here is what Gibbs found this past year:

13 Emerging Visual Design + Consumer Shopping Trends

    1. Nature Idealized: Pure & simple
    2. The Past Idealized:
      Refined selective details
      The fantasy that hands actually touched it
    3. Less Idealized: Less but better
      Minimalism dressed up
      Stand out by standing back
    4. Innocence Idealized:
      Approachable
      Familiar
      Millennial growing up = inner child
    5. Identity Idealized: Essential Color = communication
      Almost generic
    6. Purpose: Charity & giving back
    7. Peace: Less but better – solution
    8. Consumer Centric: Answers consumers’ needs
    9. Experience: Engaging = succeeds
    10. Uniqueness: Customization, personality
    11. Personalization
    12. Brand-centric Extensions: Trust
    13. Social Connection: Society & conversation

Consumers are looking for a deeper purpose when it comes to purchasing. Personalizing a brand to reflect the consumer’s everyday life allows corporations to connect with them on a deeper level and promote brand loyalty.

Living with a Brand
We need to shift the way we think. Gone are the days of picking up a product to get the job done. Now, consumers are strategically thinking about what they are purchasing. Is it green? What chemicals are included? Does it fit aesthetically in my home and in my everyday life? Brian Collins recognized this and co-foundered, COLLINS to help leaders accommodate these needs while building a brand’s authentic story. Collins explains how brands need to focus on the consumer point of view to build up the brands appeal.

Advertising doesn’t create a response like it used to. Consumers are no longer connecting with advertisements and sales pitches. To build appeal, brands have gone from BUY ME to LIVE WITH ME.

Is Your Brand Relevant?
We’re curious creatures. We like to know the way things work, why they don’t, what’s new and what’s upcoming. To feed our curiosity and keep you at the forefront of today’s emerging trends, we collected business cards from attendees, vendors, speakers and more at HOW and analyzed their properties. This is what we found.

While some of these categories have fluctuated since last year, we’re not too surprised by the outcome. Each of the items called out in the image above has increased over last year. Two-sided cards are a great way to create white space without sacrificing content and floodcoats continue to grab attention with their bold colors.

Watch out for our upcoming blogs as we break down each of these categories and expose their pros and cons!

Interested how you can incorporate some of these print processes, techniques and stocks into your brand? Comment below or reach out directly.

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