Creative Agency

Three essential design tips to build your brand


It’s no secret that carefully considered creative can elevate your brand.

Whether you’re a disruptive start-up or have been in business for 20+ years, design will always play an important role in ensuring your brand is seen, heard and even loved.

However there’s often a lot of jargon in this creative sphere — different file types, typographic terms, and can someone please explain the difference between a logotype and brandmark?

With all this confusion, we’ve pulled together our design team to give you three top tips for understanding your brand and taking it in the right direction.

Chloë's tip: Take a holistic approach

A common mistake I see small businesses make is thinking that creating a logo is where the design process ends.

Your brand is so much more than just a logo: it’s a set of values, an experience and a feeling that are all connected. Some of the most successful companies have created lovable brands by staying authentic, relevant and consistent through all their communication, internally and externally.

One way to break down your brand is to think of it as a person. Your brand’s identity (logo, typeface, colour palette) is the person’s outfit — is it loud, feminine, dark, minimal? Beyond looks, there’s a personality and set of values that they live by and your brand should have this too.

Amy's tip: File (and keep track of) your assets

So an agency has put together the perfect identity for your business and supplied you with several logo files and a brand book. These are your brand assets and you’re going to need them for everything you produce.

Having your assets up-to-date and easily accessible really helps with organisation and timings for projects. If you can give the designer everything they need, you’ll save time and money. If you need a little help, we recommend a program called Frontify.

Damo's Tip: Remain consistent

Now you’ve got your perfect identity and know exactly where that logo is filed, it’s time to put it all into practice. If there are multiple designers or agencies working on your brand, be sure it’s all consistent.

Consistency is key. If everything looks and feels coherent then your brand will resonate with your audience. When brand communications don’t align, you risk losing credibility.

Right from the start, design plays an important role in each stage of your brand’s evolution. Follow these three design tips and you’ll be well on your way to building a brand that stands the test of time.


Images: Optus Rebrand by Re. Illustration by Resolution.

Hard Edge is a strategic marketing and creative agency for disruptive brands. 
To learn more email or
call us on +61 3 9245 9245.

Disruptive brands: a bloody good idea, and the guts to believe

Let’s cut to the chase. If you want to stand out from competitors, do things differently. Disruptive brands are different because they get people engaged and immersed in their brand’s equity.

Apple, Amazon and Uber’s success isn’t about finding new markets. It’s entering established markets and disrupting (and improving) the way things are done through innovative technology and thinking. Turning their competitors upside down in the process.

“Disruption is all about risk-taking, trusting your intuition, and rejecting the way things are supposed to be done,” is how Richard Branson puts it. “Disrupting goes way beyond advertising; it forces you to think about where you want your brand to go and how to get there.”


Into the fire

Last week, I saw Notel Founder James Fry demonstrate his new start-up. It was inspiring to witness how he disrupted the accommodation sector by importing six retro Airstream trailers from the U.S., had them lifted by crane on to an unused Melbourne laneway rooftop, and fitted them out as five-star accommodation.

His guiding objective was simple: do the opposite of what traditional hotels do and offer an experience along the way. He did away with the expensive minibar, for example; supplied a 12.9” iPad instead of a television, minus the expensive movie selection, with Netflix ready to go; and created a smartphone app that allows access to your five-star caravan.

James asked an old friend, Jake Smallman (Studio Self-titled) to develop a clever identity and way finding system and enlisted the infamous Ash Keating to spray-paint a mesmerising feature wall. As if this disruptive idea wasn’t clever enough, the ingenious part was James relied only on Instagram and PR to spread the word. He didn’t use any advertising.

So has it worked? Well, weekend accommodation is booked out for the next six months. Would this brilliant idea work outside Melbourne? Let us know your thoughts on this disruptive brand and get in touch if you need help differentiating and marketing your brand.

Hard Edge is a strategic marketing and creative agency for disruptive brands. 
To learn more email or
call us on +61 3 9245 9245.