Print has seen some awesome new design trends in the last few years and 2014 has great changes in store as well. It’s always exciting to see which trends emerge and take hold and continue to redefine the world of print design. You can expect to see everything from updates in typography to new printing methods. Here are some of the trends to look out for this year.
Type Only Flyers and Brochures
Flat design has taken over the web this year and the sparse and careful use of design elements is becoming more prominent in print as well. Many companies are switching from image-heavy marketing materials to clean and minimalist designs that feature just black and white text. Choose an interesting font and let the words speak for themselves.
Image Only Design
Alternatively, some companies are opting for a single, eye-catching image to grab the attention of consumers, without cluttering it with text. This effect can be very striking and if you choose an image that conveys information about your brand, you can accomplish a lot! Sharp, pretty Instagram-esque images are going to continue to trend in 2014.
Along with crisp, simplistic photos, people and other subjects photographed in interesting, real-life settings are also gaining in popularity these days. Stay away from stock photos as the idea is to elicit stronger emotional connections in your marketing material.
Purple seems to be trending as one of the most popular colors in print design this year. Whether it’s a radiant orchid, lavender or violet, purple is a favorite for print. It seems to express sensitivity and compassion as well as stylishness and individuality. Consider a purple background or font in your design schemes this year.
Type-Lock refers to the recent method of organizing text into easily readable blocks by using different sizes, colors and weights to differentiate ideas, sentences or words. It has become an immensely popular way to convey and show the words that have the most meaning within a block of text. It’s used in many ways and blended into it are design elements like arrows, swirls, logos, etc.
Pepper some of these new design trends into your next print job for marketing materials that will make a lasting impression!
Food trucks have taken the restaurant industry by storm, with 90 percent of industry professionals confident the trend is here to stay. But the fast expansion of the industry has amped up competition, making it vital for each mobile restaurant to utilize strong branding as a way to stand out from the crowd. Here are five examples of food trucks who are branding the right way:
The Frankfoota truck popped up on season four of Food Network’s the Great Food Truck Race and is still remembered for the New York truck’s strong branding. With American flags decorating everything from the vehicle to the workers’ pants, this truck added a gourmet touch and seamless branding to the good old American hot dog.
2. The Juice Truck
Vancouver’s Juice Truck keeps it simple and allows bright colors to tie together its marketing theme. With three colors, photos of giant fruit scattered across its website and a simple truck outline on its drink label, the Juice Truck sticks in memory because there are no tricks or gimmicks. The vehicle itself is a fruity hot watermelon pink with bold, white lettering. Its branding portrays exactly what it is: a bright and colorful juice truck.
Coolhaus bases its ice cream truck branding off of Bauhaus, a modernist architectural design theme sweeter than its ice cream sandwiches. The company travels the country, delivering ice cream packaged in 1920s and ’30s wrapping, with a styled font similar to the modern, bubbly houses that stemmed from this German architectural trend. The truck itself imitates Bauhaus buildings with a hot pink popup roof, silver star rims and rounded, bubbly appearance.
4.Baby’s Badass Burgers
Sex appeal alone give LA’s Baby’s Badass Burgers a strong brand identity. The only thing hotter than the gourmet burgers, with names like the Cougar and the Other Woman, are the dolled-up burger babes serving them. These food truck vixens cruise around in high heels and short shorts, selling burgers from their hot pink burger-mobile, with sexy cartoon women plastered on the side of the truck.
5. Hula Girl Truck
A Hawaiian theme ties food, truck and worker apparel together in a flawless way with the Hula Girl Truck, based out of Washington, D.C. The menu is classic Hawaiian, featuring favorites like spam musubi. Bright colors, surf boards and a hula girl appear on the truck and website. Island-themed yellows and ocean blues make the label, clothing, menu and truck itself, which is designed to look like a beach bum van (the kind that house surfing hippies).
The food truck industry is worth over $1 billion dollars, and brands like these have found a way to stand out and cash in.
United Reprographics wraps food trucks helping you build your culinary empire! Contact us today for a free consultation.
These three tips will set you up for sure fire design success!
It can be tempting to make your ads – be they print or digital – as bright and eye-catching as possible by using bold colors and crazy fonts. But take a moment to consider the most iconic brands and how they use color: Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Apple, Nike. They use simplicity and consistent colors surrounding a simple design, to make their point and communicate their message. The human eye is drawn to white space and by surrounding a simple, striking image or brand with a clear color or two, you can capture people’s attention. Resist the temptation to overwhelm your audience with colors, Instead focus on attracting them with its careful use. You may also want to run your color choices through a color palette to ensure they are complementary. Such clean, smart, and eye-pleasing design naturally gives your audience a positive sense of your company and your culture.
Message Through Design
Just as clean, consistent color can convey that a company is full of organized, intelligent, and serious people, a well-designed logo can also give customers a sense of your values and your product or service. Spend some time brainstorming a great logo and brand name representation, then bring your ideas to a graphic designer to see if he/she can help refine your concept. This process will likely take a few weeks and you’ll go through many iterations. This is definitely something worth bringing to an expert to help you refine and perfect.
Emotion in the Tagline
Many companies master the importance of color and strong design, but forget to perfect the tagline. A tagline is a great place to tap into the power of human emotion and convey a defining quality of your company, your personnel, and your ethos. Consider how McDonald’s built the value of their tagline “I’m lovin’ it.” Not only does it focus on a positive emotion, they turned a customer testimonial – a powerful tool in its own right – into a tagline. So be creative and bold, with your own.
Remember, too, that it is okay to periodically revisit all of these design elements, even if you are an established business. Launching your new look, logo, tagline, or color scheme is a powerful marketing tool, and one that people respond to with enthusiasm. You don’t want to rebrand every year, but it is fine to update your look every 7-10 years. In fact, investing in improved design for your business is a subtle way of showing your customers that you care to stay up-to-date, are aware of what is going on around you, and you’re focused on them. It’s a win-win, so take advantage of it!
Business cards are like a mini-billboard for you and your business. They offer an invaluable way to market yourself and make your name memorable to those with whom you are networking or encountering in the world. A physical business card is the most effective way to introduce yourself and create a lasting statement at networking events, trade fairs or with people you meet at a social gathering. So why not do everything you can to make sure your name really does stand out and make an impression? Here are 5 business cards that will help people remember you for a long time to come.
Pop Up Cards
One way to really put your face with your name is to print pop up business cards. Remember old board games where your game piece would sit propped against the table to add that magical 3-d effect? These are the same idea, only it’s YOUR face that pops out of the card. You can deck them out with color and keep the fonts simple to make sure your image stands out that much more.
Throwback Card Files
This style of design is awesome, especially if you’re printing cards for an entire business or organization with the tab on the top demarcating your department. They’re great for making sure that clients who are getting a number of cards from your company are able to keep them organized. Plus, the clever design will stick in their memory.
A Card with a Mission
Why make a card just a card when you can make it a functional gift? This lawn and property management decided to make mini seed envelopes into business cards so that they’re not just passing out their names, they are also branding themselves and generating further awareness of what they do through a smart and funny measure.
Did Someone Say Branding?
If you’re going to be literal about it, like BC Adventure, you could take your company branding to the next level and print your business cards on beef jerky. Hey, it’s not for everyone, but two thumbs up for thinking outside the box on this one.
Instead of just printing your name and contact information, think about how you could make your business card actually represent what it is you do. This eye doctor’s card is the perfect example. Something that represents your industry or field with your name at the forefront has a good chance of making people think of you next time they need someone with your specialties.
When it comes to employing a time-tested, power-packed marketing tool, you would be hard pressed to find one as efficient as the brochure.
A brochure in its simplest form is a representation of your brand. They are like mini sales people who travel along with your prospects, allowing them to take in your marketing message at their leisure. Think of every time they pull out your brochure, as if they’re stepping into one of your storefronts to browse around.
When designed correctly these powerhouses have the ability to not only attract your target market, but to educate them about your company, your current product, and your plans for future projects. A well designed brochure is capable of breaking down barriers and drawing out new leads and then delivering that new business right to your digital or physical doorstep.
So, what does it take to design a brochure that works?
1. Understand that, like your marketing message, each brochure needs to be targeted.
While you can put together a general brochure that lays out who you are and what you do, the key to standing out in a crowd is to find a way to relay that special thing that makes you different.
Instead of going with a generic or generally themed brochure, define each of the areas in your client’s lives that your products help to improve. Then, based on those benefits, you can purpose a separate brochure to target each of those micro-audiences specifically.
2. If you haven’t done so yet, define your brand.
Use the attention capturing color scheme, the same images or image styles, and your unique logo to create consistency in your brochure message.
3. Know your competition and your budget going in.
Your brochure will doubtfully be the only one passing through your target customers’ hands. Know your competition, understand their brand positioning, and familiarize yourself with their marketing efforts.
The great thing about a brochure is that this cost-effective piece of marketing collateral, when produced well, can easily level the playing field and allow you to present your organization as equal to the competition in a way that you may not be able to achieve with more expensive mass media. Few small businesses can afford to produce a slick television ad, but everyone can find the budget to create a quality brochure.
Knowing your target audience and its general size is one of the key components in running a successful business. Not only does it allow you to project possible earnings, it allows you to determine just how many of your new brochures you’ll need to print. Also, don’t be afraid to test market your pieces by running several different versions of your brochure and going with the one that produces the best overall response.
4. Quality marketing produces quality leads, keep this in mind when developing your imagery.
Finally, you want to be sure that your marketing piece relays your message in a way that doesn’t turn off your audience. If you use unflattering, poor quality, or boring images in your piece, then you may negate all the hard work you’ve put into creating a lead generating brochure. This rule applies to the text you use as well.
If it’s in the budget, put a photographer or graphic designer to work creating the unique images you imagine will represent your message in the best possible light. If your budget only allows for stock photos or graphics, look for ones that don’t look or feel like they are stock. Seek out images with unique angles and clean effects that catch the eye.
The same thing goes with the text you use. You need to be able to speak through your brochure in a way that pinpoints your message and clearly communicates your call-to-action so your potential customer knows what step to take next, whether that’s to call you to schedule an appointment, visit your store to check out your sale, or visit your web site to download a demo.
15 years ago, customers were begging to get off mailing lists. Mailboxes were so full of direct business marketing materials that people dreaded their daily trip to the mailbox. Now, in a careful-what-you-wish-for scenario, consumers are begging for a reason to go to the mailbox. When marketers responded to customer demands to stop the paper trail, the advertisements came directly into the home through email and online advertising. Mailing lists went digital and customers missed the feel of the advertisement in their hands.
Marketers have responded to the fickle winds of the consumer and have returned to mailers for their advertising needs, and the numbers are looking great. While email piles up and can rest unread for a long time, research proves that 79 percent of all households at least scan all direct mail that’s pulled out of the physical mailbox. Pitney Bowes discovered that 78 percent of all consumers actually prefer direct mail for new product announcements over email notifications. The argument stands alone – direct mail has made a huge comeback.
Business marketing gurus are diversifying their direct mail portfolios with a number of different options. Flyers, postcards, even calendars are great items to send out to customers. The media is designed, proofed, printed, then mailed to a pre-defined customer list, where the customer is more likely to respond because there is no work involved to view the advertisement. Email advertisements, on the other hand, are rarely being viewed anymore due to overactive spam blocking software, default folders for ads, missing images, and cluttered formatting due to browser and e-mail software variations.
Flyers work well for blitzing the customer list. If there is an event that needs to be advertised quickly, or if the focus group is small, flyers are the most economical and easiest means to get the word out. The flyer can be focused on one specific aspect of the business, but it is large enough to include more details, such as venue name, address, contact information and sign up information. This type of advertisement is also easy for the customer to save and review at a later date. It won’t get misplaced as easily as smaller means of communication.
There are times, however, when a postcard serves its purpose. Smaller events are often advertised on postcards. The postcard can be used for special coupon offers or other enticing offers. Often, businesses ask the customer to bring the postcard in to receive an offer. This helps the business marketing team monitor the effectiveness of the postcard.
Finally, calendars are a useful tool to help keep your company fresh with the customer all year long. When a company distributes a useful item to a customer, brand recognition is extended beyond the initial reception of the first advertisement. Even if the customer only glances at the brand on the calendar, the brand will still stick in his or her mind. When there is a need, the customer will be more likely to consider the company on the calendar first.
Direct mail is coming back strong, and it’s getting creative. Smart businesses are cashing in on this new trend, and the results are quite profitable.
Vehicle wraps are one of the most cost effective forms of business marketing available. More than 70% of people who commute said they have read vehicle graphics. And unlike some other forms of advertising, vehicle wraps are paid for once but can continue to produce sales for years to come.
The longevity of vehicle wraps massively reduce the costs involved in reaching consumers. According to the Outdoor Advertising Association of America vehicle wraps cost as little as $0.77 per thousand impressions. In comparison a one third black & white ad in a top 100 newspaper will cost the advertiser $22.95 for those same one thousand eyeballs.
Vehicle wraps may be able to reach a wide audience for a relatively low price, but there are still steps you should take to enhance their effectiveness. Here are seven tips that you can use to make the most out of your vehicle graphic marketing.
#1 Reduce The Amount Of Text
Having too much text can reduce the effectiveness of the vehicle wrap. A good vehicle wrap design only needs a few basic elements. This includes the company’s name, a tagline and contact details such as phone number and/or a web address. People who are driving or on the street have a limited amount of attention. Lengthy text and bullet points will usually not be read, and can be distracting.
#2 Match The Wrap To The Vehicle
You want the style of the wrap to match the vehicle. For smaller vehicles you can go with something a little cute or funky. A van might suit a retro 50′s styling. For a SUV a more rugged wrap will often work well. The exception to this rule is when you deliberately go against expectations to catch the viewers attention.
#3 Make It Legible
You will often only have your viewers’ attention for a handful of seconds. Your message needs to be easy to read and understandable. You also want your branding to be recognizable from a distance. If someone is looking out the window of their apartment at your parked vehicle they should still be able to clearly read the text.
#4 Think Of Your Ideal Customer
Design your wrap with your ideal customer in mind. A vehicle wrap that works is one that your customer will find appealing. That means that you need to be careful about who you ask for their opinion. Just because your friend, your colleague or your spouse don’t find the wrap appealing doesn’t mean it isn’t effective. Ask someone from your customer demographic what they think.
#5 Grab Their Attention
The first priority with your vehicle graphic should be to stand out. If people don’t pay attention, then they are never going to remember your company’s name and contact details. Think bold and different, so that your vehicle stands out amongst the traffic.
#6 Consider Your Branding
Before you spend money on your vehicle wrap you need to think about your branding. If you don’t have a clear brand message then vehicle graphic design won’t be as effective. This means that the images, the company name and tag line should all work together to project a specific brand image.
#7 Don’t Ignore The Roof
When you’re wrapping a vehicle don’t forget the roof. Placing graphics and text on the roof may not produce as many views as the rest of the vehicle but it can still be worth doing. This is particularly effective if you work in areas with a lot of tall buildings where people will be looking down at the vehicle.
When you consider how many views your vehicle wrap can produce, they are arguably one of the least expensive forms of advertising available. To find out just how affordable vehicle wraps can be ask for a free quote. It maybe time to transform your work vehicle into a traveling billboard.
With all the buzz about social media and online content marketing, it’s easy to get carried away with these trends. If you aren’t careful, you could end up blowing your budget on digital marketing with nothing left to use on print collateral. In reality, successful businesses integrate quality content into both print and digital campaigns. Check out these five essential marketing tips for using quality content with your print collateral:
1. Always Start with Quality Content
Successful small businesses understand the value of quality content in digital and print marketing efforts. Your small business needs to start with content that is compelling, relevant, and helpful in order to increase sales and brand loyalty. No matter what business marketing format you choose, keep in mind that consumers respond to quality content across the board.
2. Try Customer Magazines
Customer magazines give small businesses the opportunity to deliver quality, relevant content to a captive audience. Businesses have been using customer magazines for decades as a way to position themselves as an industry knowledge base and thought leader, but these types of publications have become even more popular in the past few years. Surprisingly, in an age that is seemingly flooded with digital content, consumers are still craving the tactile, tangible experience of magazines.
3. Revisit Mailers
While it’s easy to ignore an email or move it to the spam folder, most people take more time when going through their snail mail. For many consumers, print is perceived as more credible and also more important than electronic correspondence. If you take the time to send out more than just advertisements or sales flyers, consumers will respond positively.
4. Integrate QR Codes
QR codes are a great way to enrich your content as well as connect your print and digital presence. You will most likely find consumers who initially engage in print collateral are pleased to have such a convenient method to purchase your product online or connect with your social media campaign.
5. Leverage Print Collateral For Events
In-person events, trade shows, and conventions are all excellent opportunities to connect with consumers. You won’t be able to talk to every single person that passes through, but you can distribute print collateral. Visitors to these events are often hungry for information about new products. You can satisfy the curiosity of most visitors by having a wide variety of printed materials on hand.
Though the term “content marketing” usually refers to digital collateral, successful businesses have been using quality content to engage customers for many years. Regardless of the business marketing tactics you choose to utilize, don’t neglect your print campaign. Print content can be just as effective as digital content, if used correctly.
Every salesperson knows a personal touch and a standardized follow up process can mean the difference between a closed sale and a lead going cold. But when you’re juggling a sales calls, managing a busy appointment schedule, keeping up with routine office and administrative matters, and trying meet quotas, the “extra” touches like a follow up note can get lost in the shuffle. If you aspire to send every sales prospect a handwritten note but find the task always gets pushed to tomorrow’s to-do list, you might want to consider an alternate method of follow up. To stand out from the crowd while maintaining the personal feel, the best sales teams are turning to postcards to deliver follow up messages and seal the deal. But to really make your postcards work for you, there are a few things you need to know about getting your message across.
Maximize Your Personality On Both Sides Of The Postcard
While those other guys are following up with lengthy typed letters that no one will read, and burying them in boring white envelopes, you have the opportunity to make your postcard stand out at first glance. Put extra effort into picking the right image to reinforce your brand, value proposition and personality. Skip stock photography and use this opportunity to focus on your product, your service or even you in action. Make sure to keep the text to a minimum – this isn’t a brochure. It is your calling card – and one that should grab their interest visually.
Keep It Simple And Appreciative
You’ve already had the sales talk so skip it in your follow up postcard. Remember that the point of this postcard is to thank your prospect and remind him or her that you really care – not reiterate your sales pitch. Keep any references to your product or services out of your message and include direct contact and social information as the only calls-to-action.
Make It Personal
Order printed postcards with your headline text, image and return address information to help expedite the process. However, when it comes to your prospects’ information, handwritten is key. Avoid using labels or mass mailings and hand write a personal message, including a specific reference to their company or needs. The messaging needs to feel personal and unique, otherwise you will lose effectiveness.
By getting personalized postcards preprinted, you can make sending them out as a follow up a much simpler step in your sales process. To make it even easier, keep a stack of postcards handy in your car, briefcase or office and attach postage in advance. This way when you’re ready to follow up, you simply need to write in the recipient’s address and a brief message – a very personal touch for very little effort.