How do you make your brand copy and design work together for optimal results?
Individually, each component is a fundamental priority in getting your brand message across successfully. But do they need each other to perform well? The short answer: a resounding YES.
Both your brand copy and design come together to produce effective campaigns, launches, ads, websites—pretty much every marketing and branding element your business has to offer.
Like design, a brand copy is all about efficiently getting a specific narrative across to your audience. Design is visually satisfying imagery, which does wonders in its own light. Still, brand copy appeals to the consumer’s personality, interests, and sensibilities. A feat that design may be unable to undertake alone.
Then again, human beings are inherently visual and easily inclined to attractive and eye-catching imagery, so much so that it tends to be the first thing they notice whether they’re scrolling the web or taking a stroll down the street.
With compelling brand copy, you have the opportunity to tell a story about your business. With a strong design, you create an atmosphere of beauty, drawing attention to the message you aim to convey. These are strongholds of assets that, together, pave the way for cohesive business movements and story-telling.
An excellent brand copy without a meaningful design would likely lead to a failed venture, and inversely, a fantastic design without the brand copy to measure is merely a pretty picture.
Now, you’re probably thinking, “Wow, I’d love to get started! But wait, which comes first?”
It’s a question as old as time (or as old as digital advertising). Taking into account that they must come together seamlessly, this may be a daunting approach. But keep reading, and you’ll soon crack the code.
Brand Copy And Design: Which Comes First?
You can start with either, but note that each route comes with positives and details for consideration.
Many businesses decide to start with their design rather than the brand copy, and for a good reason. Think of your visuals as the ground for your content to stand on. You can have powerful words, but without that attractive and eye-catching pull, who’s going to read them?
Not to mention, the right design may not be achieved in a single attempt. You may have to go back and forth with the designer/s for possible modifications, which can ultimately take more time than you expected, whereas content is easily adaptable. In this case, it would be more practical to nail the design aspect in the beginning.
You can also start with your brand copy, which is ideal for large or hard-hitting campaigns and launches. If you have complete confidence in what you're serving to consumers, let your words emanate that perfectly. You can then create a design that represents your content to a tee.
At the end of the day, it’s not about deciding which goes first—it’s about striking that perfect balance. And to do that, you must begin by having a basic idea of what your brand copy and design look like. Seriously, visualize it. Then, take your brand identity into account. What is the best way that you, as a brand, would communicate this message?
Once you find that sweet spot, ensure that they come together seamlessly, even if it means going through it a hundred times over. Don’t be afraid to make modifications (but do plan your timing well), and feel free to show it to someone that wasn’t involved in the process for their feedback. Does it make sense? Did it catch their interest?
Assess your action, strengths, time, identity, and you’ll figure out which one needs to be prioritized first. From there, work on finding that balance. Truth be told, it’s the answer to this fundamental question in a single word. Balance.
Tips And Tricks: Brand Copy And Design Working Together
So you struck a perfect balance, well done! But there are more strategies you can keep up your sleeve to ensure that your brand copy and design work together flawlessly, including some common mistakes you ought to stay away from.
1. Use every design element to draw attention to the brand copy.
Design is a navigator towards the understanding of the overall message. Every single graphic element should be utilized in drawing attention to the headline, eventually leading to your brand copy.
This is a rule that tends to get overlooked in the hubbub of creating a good overall design. Remember, the design is not an anchor but a powerful arrow—point it in the proper direction.
Take this opportunity to evaluate the graphical elements in your existing and future branding and marketing decisions, and ask yourself, “Does this enhance and exemplify my brand copy?”
Ensure that your design isn’t too overstimulating that it takes attention away from the copy. Instead, let the design be a spotlight on the story you’re trying to tell. Again, balance is critical here.
2. Use high contrast for fonts.
The mission here is to get people to engage with you, and readability is the core aspect behind it.
If your audience can’t decipher your message immediately, your efforts turn to mush. Use high contrast for fonts to secure legibility. It pulls the design together and makes your brand copy easily understandable.
If you have a dark background, use light fonts and vice versa. Once again, this is another rule that sometimes fails to be observed in the goal of creating a cohesive message. Don’t allow your efforts to go to waste simply because it wasn’t readable.
Ensure that you take above and beyond measures to secure an immediate understanding by your audience. Don’t give them even a second to try to decipher your message. Make it as easy for them as possible.
You only have one shot at building a lasting first impression. Steal the show.
3. Make sure your font doesn’t blend into your background.
This rule is similar to the one above, but it’s highly crucial if you plan on placing your wording atop a particular design. Brand colors can do so much in catching attention, but if the message isn’t clear, you are once again making the viewer work to understand you.
This is a mistake that can compromise your design and brand copy. Both components need each other to shine, and they must be adjusted to suit the other’s needs. A font is often placed on a specific background, which may fade and render the visual… just a visual.
Without the words, it’s just a design. You’re going for symmetry here, so do this: imagine your design as a magazine cover. There’s much to take in, yet somehow all the elements work well together. No matter how extensive the design is, the text remains easy to read. How?
You'll realize that readability is no laughing matter—you have to consider contrasts, spacing, sizes, and so much more. Feedback is a great benefit in this aspect. Send a draft over to someone with fresh eyes, and get critique on how you can make it pop.
Brand Copy And Design: Balance And Readability Are Critical
Having your brand copy and design come together seamlessly can be somewhat of a double-edged sword. You focus on one, and the other may falter. But balance is the key here.
Feel free to traverse between both copy and design departments and have them work side by side under your specifications. The most important thing is letting your brand identity shine through in each aspect—copy and design. Then, work on making this strong identity as understandable as possible.
Take this essential piece of advice: people don’t want to work too hard to digest content. This is precisely why the rise of social media is upon us. You will have to be persuasive and engaging in your own distinct way and give them a visual that stops them in their tracks and sways them to learn more.
Having your brand copy and design work well together is a significant asset, and they are powerful pillars that allude to high-quality offerings. Don’t skimp on one to fulfill the other. Focus on balance first and foremost, then prioritize readability in every crevice of the visual.
Soon enough, you’ll see for yourself what this formidable duo has to offer.