brand and communication design

Brand design and communication design has to do more than just look good. 

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works” – Steve Jobs. 

So what makes great design for brand communication?

Great design is invisible so that the brand message can shine through

I’ve seen graphic designers over complicate designs to convey marketing messages. The design challenge is to simplify the brand message visually in such a way that the design resonates subconsciously with the audience telling people how they’re supposed to interact with the brand. Highlight the brand and its message, not the design. "Design should never say, 'Look at me.' It should always say, 'Look at this.'" – David Craib.

Brand communication design should feel like it derives from one place

Graphic designing is an element of branding. A customer experiences brand through the product or service, that brand’s values, personality and communication among other things. So all forms of visual communication including illustrations, packaging design, point-of-sale, website design, logo design, marketing collateral etc help create a brand identity in the target buyer’s mind. Communicate the brand consistently and clearly at every touch point. It should feel like it derives from one place.

Successful design connects a brand with its target audience 

What graphic art attracts a sophisticated luxury product buyer could look too drab and dull to a flashy teenager. And what instantly catches eyeballs from rural buyer would in all probability be an instant-miss by this chic urban customer. The point is, design keeping in mind the target audience.

The original version of this post was released on Graphic Designer's Blog.

Published by OH! Design Studio - a niche branding agency based in Mumbai, India. From brand strategy to brand activation on online and offline channels, OH! Design Studio provides 360 degree creative services for launching new brands, re-branding and online promotion.
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Before this dairy brand tasked OH! Design Studio to redesign packaging of their entire range of products, they had already made an attempt. 

They got a limited category product packaging redesigned through some other packaging design company in India. But they wanted more personality and identity than what they got from their previous attempt.

OH! Design Studio helped reinvigorate the brand by giving its packaging the desired personality and a strong recall value.

New designs by OH! Design Stusio

Read this before- after comparison of the product packaging design for this dairy brand.

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OH! Design Studio has an impressive portfolio of high-end brochure designs, especially for luxury real estate segment. The design firm manages brochure designing from concept, design,copy to print.

At OH! Design Studio, we have worked on many real estate projects for branding, communication design and online marketing. When it comes to brochure designing, especially for luxury properties, paper choice and printing effects are an important part of successful brochure design. That’s why we insist on end-to-end execution for brochures and everything that we design for print.

1. Luxury Real Estate Brochure and Identity Design

Increasing brand awareness and building brand recall for this real estate client was the primary objective of creating this luxury real estate brochure design. Located in one of the prime areas of Mumbai Western Suburbs, we were given the task of presenting this single tower as a luxurious upscale entity.

Brochure Design Concept: Life 360 degree.

Brochure Cover Design

Brochure Custom Page Designs

2. Tri-fold brochure design

3. Brochure design for luxury villas

View a collection of OH! Design Studio's real estate marketing and communication design portfolio below:

Looking for a brochure design company or graphic design agency? Contact OH! Design Studio at

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package designing tips for success branding

It is very difficult to separate consumer’s perception of the brand from its product packaging.

That makes product packaging design an integral part of overall branding efforts.

Packaging designers have an understanding of creative and visual challenges, but they need strategic inputs from brand managers to be able to create a design that sells the product.

Target Market and Positioning

packaging designers

  • Every company wants to sell their products to largest number of consumers, but your constraint that marketing budgets are not infinite. So better to determine which consumer base would be most receptive to your product and let your branding agency devise packaging design to attract that target consumer group most effectively.
  • Brand Positioning gives a compelling picture of how the marketer wants the target market to view the brand. Since packaging design has a huge impact on the brand image, hence positioning statement must be provided to the packaging design team as a reference.
As mentioned before, brand image perceived by consumers is highly influenced by packaging design. Every designing decision that is made should be judged by how well it supports the positioning statement.
Related Article: What is target audience?

Product Category

branding and packaging agency
Packaging design by OH! Design Studio for OTC pharmaceutical product in pain relief category
  • Tell your packaging design agency exactly what category does your product belong to and who the competitors are. 
Purchase decisions are mostly made at the point of sale. The packaging has to stand out from its competition and communicate effectively with the buyer.

Successful packaging design is not necessarily the most good looking one. It should be able to stand out from the clutter. A beautiful design doesn’t always guarantee that, but a research of your competitors’ packaging does help.
  • Also, knowing product category gives an idea about the decision shoppers make for example do they go for brands in that category or color or whether they are driven by some condition. 

Packaging Design Architecture

  • You don’t want products of your brand competing with each other when looking at shelf space. With a large brand portfolio, brand architecture should be coherent across the range to create connectivity across segments and categories. There are many ways to get it right like standard use of your brand’s logotype, or creating guidelines on how the brand logo and sub-brand logo would appear.

  • For new brands with no history in marketplace, packaging and branding guidelines can be prepared before establishing a new product’s image in the eyes of consumer. For exiting brands, visual elects are already a part of it’s brand equity and hence any change in brand design must be handled with care.

If this sounds relevant to you, for branding and packaging design services. OH! Design Studio is a branding firm in Mumbai, India.

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Is it possible for small businesses to compete with large brands?

Some would consider that established brands have unlimited funds for marketing or at least amount so huge that they easily hog whole market share.

With a clearly defined niche target audience, even small businesses can effectively compete with large brands.

Here is a brief introduction to target audience and why it is important for branding.

Introduction to Target Audience

As a product owner, you would want to believe that whole world will love your products.

The reality is that not everyone “needs” your product and those who do need it may or may not “like” what you are offering.

In other words, only a small population is interested in your product.

That’s your primary target audience- the group of people you should target with advertising or other forms of promotions.

It’s like how you play darts game by throwing darts onto different parts of the board. Let’s say target audience is that board- every dart you throw is targeted or aimed to hit the board.

Example of Target Audience

For a baby diaper product, primary target audience/ market segment could be guardians and healthcare professionals of babies and toddlers who use baby products as part of their daily routine. The secondary target audience/ market segment could be anyone who purchases these products for family and friends with babies and toddlers.  The basic product positioning would be in the development stages of babies and toddlers.

Why identifying target audience is important for branding?

  • As part of brand development, strategist work on brand mission statement, does competitive research in the target category, outlines the key qualities and benefits of the brand offering, etc. 

Rather than creating a brand which appeals everyone, which is not possible and can make marketing more vague, a company can better position its brand with messaging, packaging design, advertisements, products, services and so on that appeal to those specific audience groups. Even pricing, packaging design and distribution channels are decided to appeal to a brand's target market.

Defining a target audience allows to focus brand marketing money and attention on the people most likely to provide an ROI.

Related Reading: What is a brand?

  • At our branding firm OH! Design Studio, while working on brand design projects we start by gathering insights about the target market from the client. Information about consumers’ values, preferences, lifestyle and habits provides a framework that helps determine the brand design strategy and appropriate communication. 
Consider product packaging design for instance. 
Packaging design is still the most powerful factor in product marketing to attract consumers. It is very difficult to separate consumer’s perception of the brand from its product packaging. Poor quality design is perceived as packaging a cheaper product with inferior quality. The choice of design elements, design structure and text must be then be driven by the kind of people the brand is targeting to visually stimulate their interest in the product and to create the right kind of brand image.

Brand strategy - Misconception about Target Audience

Does that mean while targeting a specific market you are excluding those who do not fit the criteria?

No. Targeting just gives a clear sense of direction for spending marketing money and creating focused brand message on a specific market that is more likely to buy from you than other markets. It is an effective as well as efficient way to reach potential clients and generate business.

Related Reading: Branding misconceptions

If you are looking for a branding or graphic design agency, then . OH! Design Studio is an integrated branding + design consultancy firm in India.

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tips on how to implement successfull branding

There are some common mistakes that big and small businesses make when they set their branding goals and invest their time and money to build a recognizable brand. 

Branding efforts stop at logo design

When using your favorite cab service, do you think about their company logo design or the vision that it represents? Logo is definitely a very important part of your brand’s identity because it goes on all your communication and products and also because it does reflect the company’s values or vision (if you go deeper), but that’s not where the branding stops.

Every touch point of your brand with its stakeholders presents the opportunity of creating an experience. That experience is the brand.

Related Reading: What brand really is?

branding checklist for small and big companies

Point is many companies stop at logo design when working towards building their brand. They must continue their efforts and take their brand experience to other collateral and touch points. 

Inconsistencies in brand design

brand design company

  • Brand Design brings the brand to life and hence graphic designing is an important element of branding
Brand design is a part of every visual communication that a company creates for their target market- be it their corporate website, product brochure, office environmental graphics, product packaging, outdoor advertisements, etc.

When companies don’t care about consistency in visual branding for all touch points, it gives mixed messages to their current and potential customers when in fact it should feel like it derives from one place. 
  • At brand design firm OH! Design Studio, while working on communication design projects we follow brand guidelines which give businesses a way to keep a brand consistent and recognizable.But companies neither invest their resources in creating one, nor find it easy to comply by it.

Not knowing enough about the target audience

creative branding agencies

Companies get vague when they are asked to describe their target market. 

Related Reading: What is target audience?
If you don’t know much about your target audience, it means you are trying to communicate with a very wide audience with different tastes, preferences and pain points. Your marketing messages and value proposition would most probably get vague too.

Trying to be everything to everyone impacts your communication too because the client brief to your creative agency would be devoid of useful information about your consumer group.

Not considering online channels for branding.

branding mistakes and how to avoid

Many businesses still consider branding for offline space only. Online marketing strikes a chord in their mind, but online branding sounds disconnected. 

This is in a way an extension of first two points.

Online channels are as important as any other brand touch points for your business. Be it website, social media channels or paid ads, maintain high standards for all brand elements.

No emphasis on internal branding

brand building tips

Effective corporate communication strategy is important for many functional reasons, but one of them is internal branding. When companies fail treat their own people as an important stakeholder, they are in a way making them unaccountable for delivering on the organization’s brand promise.

Published by OH! Design Studio - a branding and integrated design agency based in Mumbai, India.
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advantage of hiring boutique creative agency

When launching a new brand or re-branding an existing one, any business would want a reliable and good branding agency to partner for success. But it doesn’t always have to be a big creative agency. When it comes to quality of work, small can be big.

A word about small branding and creative agencies

Also known as boutique agencies, small creative firms have few things in common:

  • Boutique firms may not offer a wide range of services in-house, but most likely they have niche specialization in the services they do provide.
  • Team size at smaller creative firms is very small, but it comprises mainly of experts and specialists.
  • Small agency employees work together. High level talent works closely with each other sharing/ brainstorming ideas and sometimes skills at different levels.
  • Unlike big agencies, boutique agencies are flexible with respect to reporting models, methodologies, processes, etc.

Why choose a small branding agency?

For every brand launch, re-launch or promotion, stakes are always high. So why choose a small agency to brand, design and promote your brand?

If your thoughts resonate with this question, then the biggest misconception which you have is that only big agencies can think and do big. Well, bigger is not always better. In fact, for smaller agencies, your business represents a relatively bigger percentage of overall revenue and so they are as invested in your results as you are.

Here are some advantages of hiring a small creative agency for your branding and design work:

  • Clients work with the most experienced team members from the small agency. 

Unlike big companies, boutique firms do not have large organizational hierarchies. Their team comprises mainly of specialists, and there no work relegation to less experienced members.
Small team size has nothing to do with the quality of work. In fact, smaller creative companies can produce big agency quality work at lower overhead costs. High level talent works closely with each other sharing/ brainstorming ideas and sometimes skills at different levels.

  • There is less miscommunication.

An advantage that’s related to above point is that creative team which pitches for new projects is the same team that eventually works on the project once the job is confirmed. In big agencies, there is a dedicated business development team that presents pitches.
So how does it matter?
Well, all your pain points and information which you discussed with the pitching team are passed on to another creative team. There is bound to be some misinterpretations, missing information in that process.

  • Turnaround time is better

At times, some potential clients do share their apprehension whether the size of the team would impact the turnaround time of their job.
Bigger agencies have more processes, approvals, organizational hierarchies to deal with. Clients with project based work or those who want to move faster often look for agency that can quickly respond to their needs.
For project based work which big agencies find very small in size and scope and usually do not prioritize well, clients can partner with boutique agencies and can expect a better turnaround time.

Published by OH! Design Studio - a niche branding agency based in Mumbai, India. From brand strategy to brand activation on online and offline channels, OH! Design Studio provides 360 degree creative services for launching new brands, re-branding and online promotion.
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