Our branding process & why it is more than a logo
Here at St. Clement Creative we believe the most successful brands are authentic, consistent and personalised. We work one on one with clients to help them build their vision to life. So what’s the process and why is building a brand so much more than a logo design.
Stage 1 - Concepts
When working with a new client on one of our branding packages the first thing we do is get to know the brand vision. We do this with a one on one workshop style questionnaire. Some of the questions include: what does your business sell or offer? How was the business created? How did the creators obtain the skills to offer this service? Who are these products aimed to attract? What characteristics of the brand resonate with the target audience and finally (our favourite) if the brand was your best friend how would you describe them? (e.g. funny, quirky, serious, colourful, exciting, entertaining, sarcastic, playful etc).
From this consultation we then create a series of concepts. These concepts are essentially mood boards of how your brand could feel based on the key words extracted from the questionnaire. Let’s look at the Salisbury Grange branding project as an example.
Salisbury Grange is an organic seeds business inviting children, adults and grandparents to connect through nature. Gardening should be fun, friendly, approachable and it’s all about giving it a go. When you stop, slow down and enjoy the satisfying process of seeing something grow it can be truly rewarding and beautiful. This nurturing environment is intuitively feminine however not to exclude male audiences.
From here we extracted the following key words:
Feminine, beautiful, child-like, fun, friendly.
From this we create three concepts
Inspired by wild english gardens and the scribbles of a musicians score, this concept is romantic and traditional. It takes us back to a time where things seemed simpler, you rose with the sun and slept with the nightfall. It is sophisticated, refined, poetic. It’s about getting in touch with the slow, therapeutic movement of gardening and tending to a patch of soil. It’s about light and shade. It has a free spirt and child like innocence to it.
A modern take on traditional methods, this concepts has a twist with still life images, interesting takes on textures and fabrics and overlapping images. It is almost like you have walked into an antique centre and only selected the best parts. The integration of old and new here is reminded of teaching of a grandmothers knowledge of the garden. The sans-serif fonts and clean layouts give a refreshing look to botanical style illustrations.
Concept 3 is playful and uses colour to represent life, growth and playfulness. The type has curved details, it is caring and exciting. This concept is brought to life with block colours, bold illustrations and simple patterns. The hand-drawn elements are refined and still hold a level of sophistication to ensure it appeals to all ages.
Concept 4 has a touch more fun. Gardening is about combining the elements of sun, water and life to create something new and this is expressed through pattern. This concept has a positive and exciting energy to it and this is executed with hand drawn icons, splashes of colour and balanced with striking sans-serif fonts. It appeals to children and is vastly different to your typical green growers packaging.
Here we can see that the brand could take life in many directions. It is a wild english garden or a playful summer background? By seeing the options visually it helps us to understand what the brand vision will feel like before getting stuck into fonts and logo marks.
Stage 2 - The logo
From here two concepts are chosen and draft logos are created. This initial concept stage is vital to ensure both the client and St. Clement are on the same page. A series of logo marks are then created based on what the concept is aiming to convey.
Stage 3- Refine, refine, refine.
From here we then assist the client in choosing the strongest logo mark for their brands keywords. It’s in this stage we polish, tweak, rearrange, align and get deep in the trenches together. Each time eliminating options that no longer interest the brand. Here we test what the logo would look like black, inverted, over a busy image and over a simple image. At this stage we keep to black and white so that colours don’t sway decisions.
Once we have locked in two options for the logo mark we introduce colour. Again always reflecting on what resonates with our brands key words and what we want the brand to be known for.
Final Stage - A style guide
The final stage is creating a style guide with a set of rules to accompany the logo. This brand booklet equips you with all the tools you need to create a consistent brand. Font choices, colour codes, how to treat imagery, how to select imagery, supporting patterns or illustration styles if that is what suits the brand. From here building initial branding assets is a breeze! It even helps with starting off how your instagram could look and feel. The most important part of the branding process is identifying why your brand exists and how it is different from everyone else on the market.
Looking to start up a new brand this year? Download our information pack and pricing list.