Steven Bosch, Digital Creative Director at Owen Kessel Leo Burnett, discusses 3 brand design trends and how they are informed by mobile proliferation, digital’s impact on analogue, and sustainability within areas like package design. t.
Mobile usage has shown that consumers want to connect to Brands that behave more like People. However, the trend toward the brand-consumer dialogue, as opposed to one-way conversation, presents certain challenges, says Bosch. Mobile is bringing highly visual forms of communication to the fore, “...even the way that we are using video is something that mobile has brought to us, because people want packaged content that is visually-minded and infographic based.” This type of visual aesthetic is then being carried through in all brand communication.
Bosch explains that when the big mobile brands move toward flat design for example, the trend toward flat design moves across other mediums and platforms. “We are seeing a trend toward simplification, iconography, stronger visuals and more video,” says Bosch.
Consumers looking for the tactile in a digital world
The move toward digitisation has seen social media make its entrance into the ‘real world’.
Bosch gives the example of a Swiss town that encouraged Social Media users to Like their Facebook page - in return for their name to be placed on the notice board in town. As the world moves toward digital, there is also a counter-trend back toward analogue; the re-introduction of vinyl is an example of this. People are seeking the tactile in a world of digital, instead of simply downloading an MP3, they want something that they can touch. “The millennials of today are saying that they prefer holding real books” says Bosch.
In terms of design, it is not about abandoning everything that has been done before, but looking at ways of bringing Traditional back, in an interesting manner.
Introducing green principles into the world of design...
Bosch explains that the move toward sustainability and the environment is playing out in two different directions. On the one hand, companies are saying that they want to be green and on the other hand, consumers are saying that they are tired of the green wash. “As designers we need to look at trends around the packaging of a green organisation.” Soya based inks, recycled paper and single colour printing processes for example look at the actual impact on the environment, as opposed to multi-colour glossy prints that claim to represent a green organisation.