Branding and Graphic Design – A Natural Home for a Photographer?
I went to collect a pizza last night – a rare occasion, I promise – and got chatting with the owner of the take away. He was surprised to learn that I did graphic design and was not just a photographer. He was also surprised to learn that many of the beautifully designed posters that I had put up in his shop over the years had been created entirely by me.
As I cast a weary, critical eye over his rather impoverished looking menu, I asked him who did his design and (cheekily) how much he had paid for his brochures. Cue astonishment – over £110.00 for a bad trifold and wait for it – only 100 of them! That’s over a pound apiece.
Earlier in the day I had sat down with a new client, Bronagh, around her kitchen table to have a brainstorm on brand development for her start-up baking business. I had spent many years working in a marketing environment and with many, many creatives. One of the things lacking in my many conversations with these creatives was how incredibly uncreative they were. It was a stark lesson that owning a degree in design does not a designer make.
It would have been easy to go wild with creative solutions for the new baking business, but we agreed early on that any solution should be simple, strong and easily transferable across all off and online marketing. There is a tendency in our part of the world to be quite lazy when it comes to naming our businesses (I’m no exception!) with most using their initials – e.g CP Computing – which really doesn’t convey anything other than they are in the computer business.
So we kept it simple – Bronagh was a baker working from the kitchen of her own house – thus the simplicity of ‘BakeHouse’ as the business name was very attractive. And we kept the graphic simple, with a short strapline ‘Quality Organic Baking’ which in its entirety, capture the DNA of the business. We deliberately left off any twee motifs or graphics.
Yesterday I further developed this simple concept across some online and offline promotion, including the Facebook page and menu for the bakery. I played around with the masthead of the FB page for a bit, superimposing the logo over images of food etc. but eventually arrived at the simplicity of the logo against a bright aquamarine background.
I believe that keeping it simple and uncluttered has drawn attention to the page and in 24 hours it has achieved nearly 200 organic likes, with a post reach of over 1,300 Facebook users.
This afternoon Bronagh took her first order!
So, then to some offline design treatments. Well ‘first things first’ suggests the need for a menu. This used the strong brand logo as a masthead with a lovely Bell MT font. Using only black text means that the menu can be read easily online as it is to be available a download on Facebook’s menu option. It also translates well onto paper and card and is small enough to email to potential clients.
The next stage of the project will be a full photoshoot of Bronagh’s menu, in her kitchen with ingredients and finished breads fresh from the oven. This should ensure that the ‘authenticity’ of Bronagh’s offer is fulfilled across all media!
So best of luck in your new venture Bronagh and here’s hoping that your new brand becomes established quickly and that your food adorn’s many a great table in the future!