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Why Typography Matters in Branding

When it comes to branding, typography is one of the most important elements in developing a coherent brand system. Apart from your logo, the typefaces you use throughout your brand collateral, your website, your packaging, your signage and all other brand touchpoints make up the general look and feel of your brand, and should be as effective and recognisable as the logo itself.

There is no point in developing a beautiful icon for your logo, if the typeface of the brand name doesn’t suit. Equally, there is no point in developing a beautiful logo, if the rest of your brand looks amiss. The typeface you choose is even more important if your logo is a wordmark, with no icon included.

There are millions of fonts that have been designed by typographers, designers and type foundries, but what do you need to keep in mind to ensure your chosen typography effectively communicates your brand message (and looks good enough to eat)?

  1. Flexibility – Your chosen font families need to work across multiple brand touchpoints. You will need a font that works well in print and online, on a phone or on a billboard. Make sure your typeface is clear and easy to read. You might need to have multiple rules for your typefaces to ensure legibility for each application.
  2. Serif or Sans Serif Font? In typography, a serif is the small extra stroke found at the end of the main vertical and horizontal strokes on some of the letters. It is generally thought that serif fonts can aid in readability and are considered to be more of a traditional font. Sean serif fonts don’t have the extra strokes, and are generally considered to be more modern. Wether your typography includes both serfi and san serif fonts greatly depends on your brand personality and the applications where you brand is often applied. Your brand strategy will help reveal your brand personality and your designer will select a font that suits.
  3. Differentiation. One of the biggest mistakes we see when re-branding a business is when the typography is too bland. Effective typography needs to help you communicate. By adding differentiation, you’ll be able to capture attention and support information hierarchy. This can be done by using a different font for headings and subheadings, and choosing a different typeface for your body copy. Even if you settle on using only one typeface, you can create more meaning by using a different font sizes, weights, italics and capitals to develop a visual language. This can be further enhanced through the use of colour, and adding special text treatments for bullets, numbering, quotes, call outs and captions.
  4. Leading and Kerning Leading refers to the vertical gaps between lines of text and kerning refers to the spacing between the characters in a word. Beautiful typography takes this important but often overlooked element into account and a skilled designer will know how to manipulate the typeface to give it more or less ‘air’, therefore affecting how it is perceived and what message it conveys.
  5. Customisation When it comes to logo design, the typeface you use for your logo is crucial to the success of your logo. Don’t be fooled thinking its a quick and simple job to add a font to an icon. Some of the worlds simplest logos took hundreds of hours to create. Good designers will search the world over for THE perfect typeface, and in most cases, will individually manipulate and customise each letter shape to get that simple, timeless look.

Your typography is crucial to the success of your brand. Work with us to get it right.

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