Archives - March 2012

The Shape of Branding

Brand strategist Andrew Miller is on a mission: “Every day for 100 days, I will paint one branded object white, removing all visual branding, reducing the object to its purest form.” Each object may be purchased for less than $10. His first post? SPOILER ALERT:

A Heinz Ketchup Pack. It looks like soft, flexible packaging that probably contains a condiment. It definitely looks like I’d have to open it with my teeth. And that I’d likely be experiencing the inevitable condiment spluge as a result. The only question I’d have is what color I’d be scraping off my shirt: red? yellow? or mayo? Is mayo even a color? If so, I wonder what pantone would say…

All kidding “a-side”. We’re big believers in Holistic Packaging Design.  Design that synthesizes brand ambition, design disciplines and technological possibilities to create brand and business value through packaging. Andrew Miller’s mission is a great case study in branded packaging communication.  Sure, graphic design has a huge role to play in communication.  But is it the only design discipline at play? And has Miller achieved his goal of “removing all visual branding”?

For example, in the Day 2 post (answers at bottom). Can you recognize the brand by shape alone? Do graphics really do much heavy lifting in communicating this brand’s promise?

In the Day 10 post, do you recognize it in an instant? What do you imagine you’d find inside? What does the size and shape convey about the product promise inside?

In the Day 9 post (which granted is not a packaging example) is there any level of doubt as to what the object is? How does the shape communicate so much sense in such a small cent?

Which makes it a great example for us in branded packaging communication.  As more and more regulations and restrictions come into play regarding- who? can say what? and in what ways? We are likely seeing here the early beginnings of the shape of things to come in branding.

Day 2: Zippo

Day 10: Tabasco

Day 9: Lincoln Memorial Cent

Picture Credits: Andrew Miller “Brand Spirit”

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Raise a glass…

Sláinte – (Slahn – cha…Cheers!)

We hope you enjoy our ode to the black stuff – a Boxer take on the Guinness brand story

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