The Importance of Knowing Why We Design

This past Thursday, I attended a monthly gathering of AIGA Oklahoma at Bricktown Brewery in Oklahoma City. Each month, they bring in creative people to speak and share their stories and experiences. After each event, I make the drive back to Stillwater inspired, motivated, and thankful I became of member of AIGA. The speakers are great and I get to meet other designers, illustrators, writers, etc. It is important, especially for an introvert like myself, to get out and not be in a bubble (see Bubble Boy episode of Seinfeld – spoiler: doesn’t end well). It’s helps you gain perspective being around others who operate in the creative space.

The latest speaker they brought was Deborah Adler, mastermind behind Target’s award-winning prescription bottle redesign (ClearRx). She spoke passionately about how design can improve the quality of healthcare services and patient experience. Deborah articulated exactly how important design can be in our society. It made me thankful for the skillset I have and reminded me of the power this field wields when motivated by a noble purpose.

Continue reading “The Importance of Knowing Why We Design”

How To Create Visual Brand Identity Guidelines

I have written about why organizations and companies have brand & style guidelines and the steps to building your own visual brand identity. Now, I would like to take you through a recently finished identity project for Tau Beta Sigma National Honorary Band Sorority.

Tau Beta Sigma is a co-educational national honorary band sorority dedicated to serving college and band programs.

Tau Beta Sigma operates primarily as a student service and leadership recognition society whose chief aim is to assist the Director of Bands in developing the leadership and enthusiasm that they require of their band.

Crafting a visual brand identity is not an easy task, especially when you doing it for a large national organization rich in history, relevance, and influence. These visual assets will help tell an important story and must resonate with sisters (active and alumni), the band community, and the public at large. Getting to this point involved conversations, directives, and insights from the National Council, Board of Trustees, and the Alumni Association. This playbook will educate sisters on how to properly communicate the mission, message, and personality of Tau Beta Sigma.

Continue reading “How To Create Visual Brand Identity Guidelines”

Your Brand Is Your Gold

As an individual, company, group, or organization, your brand is everything.

Literally.

A brand is everything that makes you…you — the images you showcase, the promises you give, and the actions you take (or don’t take).

Whether you are an employee of a company, an entrepreneur, or a member of an organization, you need to know the brand you are representing. As a human being, everything you put out into the world is under the umbrella of your personal brand. It is important to be cognizant of the image you are projecting and make sure it is true to who you really are.

Continue reading “Your Brand Is Your Gold”

How To Mobilize Fans and Alumni (For Your Band & Chapter)

This one is inspired by my work and my presentations for Kappa Kappa Psi & Tau Beta Sigma.

Engaging your fans and alumni is very important. They have the capacity to be your greatest champions, financially and otherwise. If your band or chapter is in need or striving for a particular goal, it is crucial to gain as much support as possible. Opportunities can also open up to you, when people take notice of the influence you have and the power you wield in the community.

Continue reading “How To Mobilize Fans and Alumni (For Your Band & Chapter)”

3 Questions To Answer When Building A Brand

Know what and who you are

Your brand is your gold, as I have mentioned before. You have to mine and refine that gold to establish yourself, your organization, your company, etc. Before you can truly build and tell the story of your brand, there are some questions that you must answer. Here’s a sample of three inspired by the SHYPSI client questionnaire, used to educate the designer on the potential client and what they need.

Continue reading “3 Questions To Answer When Building A Brand”

Invest In Your Brand (Or Else)

Invest In Your Brand (Or Else)

“That much for a logo?”

in·vest·ment
inˈves(t)mənt/ (noun)
noun: investment; plural noun: investments

the action or process of investing money for profit or material result.
a thing that is worth buying because it may be profitable or useful in the future. “a used car is rarely a good investment”

act of devoting time, effort, or energy to a particular undertaking with the expectation of a worthwhile result. “the time spent in attending a one-day seminar is an investment in our professional futures”

synonyms: contribution, sacrifice
“a substantial investment of time”


Whether you want to build a personal brand or a company/organization brand, you need to invest time, energy, and money into that edification. While on break, back home in North Carolina, some friends of mine talked with me about some projects they wanted to get off the ground. I threw out a possible ballpark estimate for a logo and they were shocked by the price range.

“That much?”

“…for a logo?”

Yes.

Continue reading “Invest In Your Brand (Or Else)”