Do you agree that even a good product is doomed to failure if it has no catchy brand identity?
Branding examples can be found everywhere – on TV, on billboards, and around the web. It helps your product stand out against the crowd of competitors and become more recognizable for the customers.
Creating a custom logo design is one of the requisite steps to a brand’s popularity.
A well-known graphic designer Paul Rand once said: “Design is a silent ambassador of your brand,” and his words make sense for sure. Hence, it is strictly important for you to think well when it comes to brand identity design.
In this article, you will get familiar with 10 graphic design trends of 2020 that would give you a couple of ideas on how to design your brand.
The Importance of Graphic Design for Branding
To see the correlation between branding and graphic design, let’s start by defining these two concepts.
If you check out a Business Dictionary, you will get the following definition for “brand”:
“Unique design, sign, symbol, words, or a combination of these, employed in creating an image that identifies a product and differentiates it from its competitors. Over time, this image becomes associated with a level of credibility, quality, and satisfaction in the consumer’s mind.”
To put it simply, branding is about people’s associations when they think about your product. For instance, when you think about Coca-Cola you recollect an original taste of this beverage, its black color, and a company’s logo.
Now let’s see a definition for “graphic design”:
“Graphic design is the process of visual communication and problem-solving through the use of typography, photography, and illustration.”
This definition highlights the purpose of graphic design – building a “visual communication” with the customers and solving the problems they have. And the tools that help here are different graphic design elements.
Again, remember the steps you take before buying a bottle of Coca-Cola. One of the triggers that forces you to buy a product is its brand logo. And your aim as a product owner is to design the logo that would stick in your target audience’s mind.
Top 10 Brand Identity Graphic Design Trends
Graphic design 2020 can suggest lots of trends you might want to consider. All these trends have their pros and cons and may or may not go in line with the business your brand represents.
However, these 10 proven graphic design trends will undoubtedly spark your interest.
Gradient elements were a popular graphic trend back in the days. Gradients were used to add more intense colors to designs. Today we can observe a new rise in this trend as it seems like ordinary color transitions are always up-to-date.
Color gradients are widely used for the design of mainstream products packaging
SIDENOTE: Consider using color gradients for your logo if you sell some beauty care products. Do you remember Versace’s logo? One of its interpretations is a golden emblem with a gradient element.
It makes the logo more sparkling and attractive. It affects your target audience in the right way. Your potential consumers are more likely to purchase your product if it catches their eyes.
In contrast to a beauty craft, you should avoid using gradients for a logo of a law company. Any law firm must take everything seriously. And the main idea behind the identity, in this case, is to stand up for credibility.
Another old-fashioned graphic design trend that still rings the bell. Typography offers extraordinary visual updates for your brand. It tries to communicate with the audience by introducing your brand in a written form.
More and more companies prefer to build a visual connection with people by using this graphic design trend for their branding.
SIDENOTE: If your business needs people to be focused on memorizing a brand name, bold typography is your choice. For instance, the logo of a famous MTV channel is the best example of how typography works.
In this case, when your potential customer thinks about your product or service, the only thing that will trigger associations should be a brand logotype.
Bold typography is a universal design trend that any business owner can use.
We all lean towards perfection in the environment around us. But when it comes to market psychology, many business owners prefer to break the rules. That’s when the asymmetrical layout gets into a game.
Asymmetrical layout is based on a visual imperfection that keeps the matter open. A slight innuendo on what people should see in your brand exposition. If your target audience has questions about your brand, it means that it will be in the limelight.
SIDENOTE: This design trend can be a nice fit for the real-estate and resort industries. Both niches require to apply a kind of creativity that would draw all eyes to the picture and still keep the subject of the message your brand sends. Moreover, this design element can be used not only for a brand logo but for the main page of the website as well.
Brand Identity System
Brand identity system stands for flexibility, unity, and consistency. This system has a fundamental structure of using visual elements as a basis for creating patterns and graphics. In other words, you can take whatever element you like (square, triangle, color scheme) and start developing the entire concept of your brand based on this.
SIDENOTE: By applying a brand identity system you will be able to include your company’s principles, values, and everything in between with a single design decision you’ve taken. Keep in mind that your brand logo must be perfectly visualized on every branded stuff (SWAG) you want to share with your customers. As a result, if you believe that your business can have this brand identity to be applied, you should use it.
Textured 3D Design
How about adding a bit of an illusion to your brand identity?
Textured 3D Design allows you to create a three-dimensional illusion that would contain different types of textures (stone, glass, plastic) perfectly reflecting your brand identity.
SIDENOTE: You can use this design trend if you work in a mentioned above real-estate industry. Let’s say, you are the owner of a hotel or a real estate company. You may want to add something unique to the design of the facility. To combine “stone walls” with growing trees. This design solution will look fresh and interesting for your target audience. This innovation should be reflected in your brand logo and website design as well.
Apartment company Wardian London has implemented this design trend. They matched “stone walls” with “green leaves” elements illustrating the contrast that you can see in every aspect of design this company follows.
If you are fond of a psychological approach when thinking of your brand, you will like this graphic design trend.
Liquid textures that follow the shape of sphere-like ovals, ellipses or circles recall a feeling of safety in our mind. It works on the subconscious level. Therefore, we tend to memorize this aspect of brand design and will get back to it over again.
SIDENOTE: The first example of a business that comes to mind is the beverage industry. Any beverage aims to provoke a thirst, right? Hence, it should feature “water” elements in a brand logotype. Here is how a company PepsiCo introduced a soft drink “Sierra Mist” that would compete with Coca-Cola’s “7 up”:
It really works on the subconsciousness level – you want to drink by looking at this logo.
Any kind of competition forces companies to look for new ways that would help them preserve their company’s brand identity. If you research your niche-related market, you will see that each brand has something unique in its logo design.
For example, some brands prefer to base their identity on a color scheme, the other – on a geometrical simplicity
The main idea here is that all these companies try to find their own custom-designed brand identity that would resonate with their target audience. And the tailor-made illustration is a solution that works.
SIDENOTE: There is no certain business niche that would fall within the limitation of using this design trend. You can use it for any type of business you run. But make sure you think ahead about each nuance. For example, the SEO industry tool Ahrefs has its own tailor-made brand design that combines three main colors – white, blue, and orange. Remarkably, these colors make up the body of Ahrefs’ website interface. Plus, they have come up with an idea for their blog’s cover illustrations that feature a man with his dog.
Isometric design is a method of transforming 2D graphics into 3D forms for achieving more playful results. This graphic design trend is widely used for presentations, websites, and graphics.
SIDENOTE: Isometric graphic trend is an excellent choice for the gaming industry. Also, you can use it in a real-estate niche that would be a perfect fit for illustrating building projects and other types of engineering stuff.
Mixed media embraces various types of graphic design elements accumulated in one place. Such a mix makes the message of your brand more diverse. Typically, it is used for showing a concept behind the brand but not the product itself.
SIDENOTE: Mixed media can be used for a music equipment niche, automobile industry, and other types of businesses with a wide range of productions.
Animated videos are an excellent solution for brands to build awareness. They are interesting, engaging, and funny. This graphic design trend is in its prime right now.
Why is it so popular?
Simply because it allows you to combine different illustrations, your brand’s logo, and other additional graphic elements in one video format.
SIDENOTE: If your type of business allows you to take things less seriously, this graphic trend is for you. Specifically, it is a good option for a “kid stuff” industry. Just imagine how your brand would attract a target audience if you present the production using animated video as the solution.
Graphic design trends never stay still. Every year brings innovative solutions in a design niche that give you a freedom of brand identity representation. It is up to you how your branding will communicate your corporate values – it can convey a clear message or let people think it through.
You have just revised 10 trends that could be a wonderful source of inspiration for you to create a unique brand identity never seen in the market before.
Add more creativity to your business and you will go far!
Author’s bio: Sergey Aliokhin is a Marketing specialist who works with different projects. Now he does marketing for Bannersnack. In his spare time, he likes to study martial arts, play the bass guitar and read.