Seeing the wood for the trees: brand colours often tell a deep-seeded story without using words. Complete’s logomark, for example, speaks to the environmentally responsible lens through which we see everything we do
Brand and logo must be aligned with the purpose of the organisation they represent. Some may just contain logomark (an illustration), some may just contain logotype (a word or words) and some may contain both (illustration and word(s) like Complete’s).
On a more practical level, logomarks, logotypes and brand colours must always be chosen with consideration to usage and reproduction:
- on different paper/card stocks
- with different print embellishments
- on different colour backgrounds
- on fabric for merchandise
- when scaled
Choosing a brand colour palette that is versatile
It’s all very well picking three colours that look incredible on a screen, and having a great narrative behind why you’ve picked them and what they represent, but how well will they be reproduced across myriad digital and print properties and applications?
Firstly, you may choose to trademark Pantone references because you want your brand colours to be as unique as possible. But you have to consider the cost of printing those colours (you’d be in the same company as HP Sauce, Tiffany & Co, Target and McDonalds). If you choose Pantone SPOT colours (pre-mixed ink) without trademarking, you have to consider that printers and designers would have to create RGB (digital) and CMYK (print) versions that are as close as possible, but not quite exact.
You’ll have to consider how the colours would appear on paper stock, card stock, cardboard, caps and company cars; how the colours might appear on a black shirt, a white shirt and product packaging. How your logo and brand colours would appear on a matt invitation or a glossy magazine. A letterpress-printed logo type may look fantastic on the cover of a hardback book, but how will it look on a paper printed invoice?
It’s also important to have ideas for how colours might tie in with brand extensions, whether that’s for new product development, sub-brands or an additional arm to an organisation under the same brand.
Designing a logo that scales well
It goes without saying that organisations should use a qualified designer, where possible, to create visual branding and all of the elements that come with it. This will ensure that the organisation has a suite of assets ready for digital and print reproduction at any scale, on any surface (Vector file format is best) – whether the logo will appear on a business card or an aeroplane. Ideally, there would be a version that uses reverse colours too (for light and dark backgrounds).
What’s the difference between a brand and a logo?
Of course, there is more to a brand than just colours and logos. These are the visual representations of the brand, business or organisation. People, culture, narrative, tone of voice, values, mission and vision are just some of the elements that make up a brand – all driven by an organisation’s purpose; why it exists and why it does what it does.
Why are logos and colours important to every organisation?
Complete’s logomark represents the completeness of a circle with an environmentally responsible (green) focus – our ‘why’. ‘Print With Trust’ is the logotype that explains what we do and what we think Australian organisations should also do. At Complete, we like to work with organisations that have a clear purpose we can align with – and those who can understand what drives us.
Complete’s deep commitment to detail is always viewed through the lens of each partnership’s bigger picture purpose.
We may not be designers or branding experts here, but we know how logos and brand colours will reproduce across offset and digital print, at any scale – and on any surface. If you’re going through the process of branding – or re-branding – contact firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss print-finishing.