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A Sustainable Design Blog

Good Branding Is Not For Everyone

by Jennifer Stewart | Jun 28, 2011 | Branding

I’d like to take a moment to talk about the hazards associated with good, professional design. I don’t know if many designers would admit this, but there are some people for whom good branding can be quite…well…bad. So here is the list of companies that should not have good branding.

  1. You're not ready for a lot of business – Some good coming-soon signage and an intriguing temporary website can create quite a bit of buzz. This is what most business owners want and can easily achieve with nice design. The only downside is that when the temp stuff comes down, the world knows you’re open, and your image is sleek and professional, people expect you to have it together. If you don’t, they don’t go easy on you. The expectation of capable professionalism is set through your image, and if you can’t live up to it, or at least adjust quickly to the demand, you’ll find out how long a customer’s memory can last.
  2. You want to look cheap – Think this is a joke? Why does walking into a Walmart make you feel like you’re in a warehouse, while Target rotates boutique clothing lines? Yes, Walmart has graphic designers working on their brand, but they can afford to pay designers to not be creative. If you want the world to know that your services or products are inexpensive and accessible to anyone, then I suggest Microsoft Publisher, some clipart and a long weekend.
  3. You don’t value/budget for design – You know the big boys pay professional design studios to create their brand, but they’re just wasting their money. All you need is a nice font, those free business cards, and a website template, thank you very much. Besides, you can’t tell the difference between a good website and a bad website and don’t think anyone else can either. If this describes your feelings, ignore those business books that tell you to spend money to make money. You’re different and special.

However, if you are ready for a lot of business, you want to look valuable and high quality, and you value your professional image, going with a professional branding design studio is definitely the way to go. It will not be cheap and it will not be quick. But chances are that it will be awesome.

Jennifer Stewart is the Office Manager and wanna-be organizational psychologist at Modern Species. For more posts from her, click here.

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There are many things that we would throw away, if we were not afraid that others might pick them up.- Oscar Wilde