Brand Design Inspiration – Part 3: Where to Find Brand Design Inspiration
- What to Consider When Seeking Brand Design Inspiration
- 10 Sites & Resources for Finding Brand Design Inspiration
While it’s true that your brand identity should be the core of your brand design, as we discussed in part 1 of this series, it’s certainly helpful to turn to others for brand design inspiration. There are plenty of successful brands and creative sources to seek out, and that’s what we’re going to talk about in this article.
Just remember—there’s no right or wrong way to get inspiration for your brand design; it’s how you use the inspiration that matters.
If you could describe your brand like you might a person you know well… How would they dress? How would they speak to customers? How would they build relationships? What causes are they passionate about? Design has a heartbeat when it's done correctly. A well designed brand shows up consistently as that same ‘person’ every day 365 days out of the year.
What to Consider When Seeking Brand Design Inspiration
A 2021 survey by Stackla on consumer behavior revealed that 88% of shoppers like and support brands that showcase authenticity. So, while much of your brand design efforts should be focused on aesthetic value, make sure you don’t lose sight of your brand identity in the process. Consumers expect you to be honest, and how you carry your business is a crucial part of that.
Use these tips to ensure that your brand and target audience are aligned when developing your brand design…
Know Your Target Audience
When seeking brand design inspiration, always think about your target audience first. Even the best graphic designers and the most state-of-the-art software programs are no good if your brand design does not resonate with your target market.
Take into account the various underlying cultural factors and personal experiences that impact how your target audience responds to various aspects of design, including colors, styles, etc.
For example, maybe you feel strongly about the color red because it inspires vibrancy and energy, but your target audience might seek something calming and peaceful, like the color blue or green.
Always start with the audience when building a brand design and then work backward.
Know Your Industry
Corporate branding also requires a deep understanding of your industry and what consumers have come to expect from it. This is a good starting place to conceptualize your design.
Don’t just gloss over the surface of your industry. Dig deep into the following:
- What images relate to the products or services you offer
- What colors are associated with your industry
- What features your industry is known for
This approach will inform your creative brief so you can build a winning corporate design.
For example, 99Designs has cited that two out of three healthcare logos are blue. In addition, 85% of all brand colors are blue. The color blue is associated with trust, cleanliness, and knowledge. These are qualities that are essential to healthcare companies.
Know Your Competitors
Your competitors can also be a gold mine of information you can use to build your brand design. Turn to direct and indirect competitors for brand design inspiration to help you determine what resonates with your target audience (and what doesn’t).
Take time to view a competitor’s website or social media feed for visual inspiration and references. The idea is to take pointers on what you can incorporate into your brand design. Avoid copying their actual design and color schemes, as you still want to differentiate yourself.
Look Beyond Your Industry
While knowing your industry and target audience is important, don’t limit yourself to that. The best way to stand out visually and as a brand is to forge unique designs and ideas.
That’s why it is important to take inspiration from successful companies outside your industry too. Major companies have had extreme success with their visual branding. Dissect their designs, discover why it has worked for them, and play around with how you can incorporate aspects into your design.
10 Sites & Resources for Finding Brand Design Inspiration
It can be challenging to build a design from scratch. Thankfully, the internet is full of ideas and resources for design ideas. When using sites for brand design inspiration, it is essential to look at prevailing trends, especially when choosing your brand color.
Here are some resources you can use to jump-start the creative process for your brand…
1) The Branding Journal
The Branding Journal offers one of the most extensive collections of branding designs and ideas on the web. You can explore the collection for new ideas to determine how successful brands develop their designs. There’s also a hub for designers and users to connect, which helps encourage knowledge sharing in the field of brand design.
2) Brand New
Brand New is an online resource to gather ideas about artists’ branding works and get the latest updates on the branding world. The great thing about this website is that they have created different categories of brand works so you can assess the creative process at every stage of development.
It is the best source of brand design inspiration from a critical viewpoint, which makes it ideal for corporate branding.
If you’re the creative type, you will love Designspiration. It has a layout similar to Pinterest that makes it easier to collect visual ideas. It is also a great place to share your own ideas and visual creations. The website serves as a place where people come online to inspire or be inspired.
BrandStuck is a subscription-based online resource for relevant case studies on successful brands and design inspiration. You can get a detailed look into successful brands like Netflix and Adidas to help you with crucial branding decisions. It is an excellent resource for professionals who are serious about positioning their brands in front of their competitors.
Adweek was launched in 1979 and is one of the first websites created for branding design ideas. The focus of the website’s content has always been on advertising and brand marketing. Recently, it has incorporated ideas for digital marketing, aside from traditional print ads.
This website is a one-stop shop for relevant news, trend reports, and events for advertising and branding.
6) The Dieline
The Dieline started as a personal blog and evolved into a hub for package design resources. Therefore, it’s a great source of brand design inspiration for brands that want to foster their identity through packaging.
The tailored content on branding and packaging makes it a practical guide for branding professionals. You can even browse ideas for old and new brands.
7) Identity Designed
A graphic designer launched Identity Designed in 2010 as a side project. He used the website as a platform to showcase his creations. Over the years, hundreds of other projects have been featured on the website. You can look at their designs for inspiration on how to create a visual identity for your brand.
8) Dribble Branding Category
Since its founding in 2009, Dribble Branding Category has built a massive online community that allows brand designers to share ideas and showcase their creations. This website is invitation-only, making it available for serious designers and branding professionals. There are many resources available for the following:
- Logo creation
- Product design
- Print ads
- And more
Medium is an excellent source of information regarding marketing, branding, and all things creative. There are several experts on Medium who share their expertise and knowledge on the above subjects. You can use this website as a source of inspiration if you’re seeking fresh branding and design ideas.
Last but not least, Pinterest is one of the best websites for brand design inspiration because you can find the most extensive collection of visual inspiration. Millions of pins are published on the website daily, which means this platform offers an abundance of resources and brand design ideas.
You can also create your own boards where you collect the relevant design ideas in one place for quick reference. It is possible to organize your ideas according to the color palette, categories, etc. Pinterest is a great platform to learn about the latest color palette and design trends.
The websites and resources provided here can provide you with plenty of visual references for your brand design inspiration. However, don’t forget that your brand identity is the core of your visual design. Make sure your visual aesthetic is aligned with your business identity and goals for it to become successful.
If you’re having trouble getting started with your brand design, you can download our style guide template for free. Use this to help you build a compelling design that converts!