Brand Hyper Distillation

The role of any design practitioner is to simplify — distill as much meaning into as few elements as possible while still conveying the primary purpose and tone. This has become especially important today, as digital experiences have come to the forefront — function supersedes form. Thus, it’s essential for every brand asset to have a place. Because of this, many brands seek to streamline their core system of elements, each needing to be distinctive and relevant in their own right. And, so the following challenge ensues: develop a ubiquitously prolific, highly elastic brand without introducing anything that’s not strictly functional.

Markets are in flux, evolving customer segments, new media channels, and due to these demands it is inevitable that brands need to evolve. Commonly, the preference is to pursue digital first — social channels, on-domain, where the entirety of the brand must be distilled down to fit within the confines of an application tile, a profile photo, or similar endorsement. All of these constraints and variables can be formidable, yet, notably, there are there is a noticeable trend over the past few years with design to simplify, while enriching the brand’s overall presence — here are a few great examples:

Bulb

A player in the consumer energy market, and London-based startup, Bulb, formally Simple Energy, is trying to rethink how energy suppliers work. Bulb is a green energy supplier, with all of its electricity and 10% of its gas coming from renewable sources. And as of June of 2017 has 70,000 customers. Needless to say, they needed some substance to compete in an already flooded market space. To separate themselves, Bulb employs a disruptive visual identity intended to appeal to millennials — its target market. The identity is extended into its unconventional logotype that nods to the identity's frenetic and playful movement.

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NewVoiceMedia

NewVoiceMedia’s cloud contact center and inside sales platform delivers more successful conversations. The leading vendor’s award-winning customer contact platform helps organizations worldwide build a more personal relationship with every customer or prospect. It joins up all communications channels without expensive, disruptive hardware changes and plugs straight into your CRM for full access to data. With a true cloud environment and proven 99.999% platform availability, NewVoiceMedia ensures complete flexibility, scalability and reliability.

The logo is provides a unique presentation of the “NVM” monogram all built from the same repetitive combination of vertical and angled lines while seeding the concept of the waveform as part of the identity’s visual language.


Juventus Football Club

Founded in 1897 by some Torinese students, the club has worn black and white striped jerseys since 1903. Built upon their heritage-founded principles of confidence, determination, and uncompromising conviction, Juventus crafted a revolutionary growth plan — aimed to appeal to the football fan while being highly relevant to entertainment enthusiasts who are further away from football as a sport. Bold and iconic the logo is flexible enough to appear alongside a wide range of new experiences—in the stadium and beyond.

The update allows Juventus to present itself just as much a soccer brand as a premium lifestyle brand, achieving a rare case of simplicity, boldness, and directness rarely seen in European soccer teams that will help expand the possibilities of how and where Juventus is presented without it being dragged back by what other 100-year-old soccer teams are expected to look like.

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Hammerson

Established in 1942, Hammerson is an owner, manager, and developer of retail destinations in Europe. Their portfolio consists of 21 shopping centers (malls) in the UK and France — including the UK’s first covered mall in 1976 — 19 retail parks in the UK, and 15 outlets across Europe, for a combined retail space of 7.2 million square feet (2.2 million square meters). Long operating behind the scenes and as B2B brand, Hammerson is making a concerted effort to make its name better known amongst consumers and gain more brand recognition, starting with a new identity designed by London-based Pentagram partner Harry Pearce.

The masterbrand is centred on the logotype’s hidden H, that gives Hammerson a strong presence, whilst still giving individual centres and surrounding communities a sense of ownership. The invisible H makes clear Hammerson’s quiet personality but essential role.

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NatWest

Established in 1968 when National Provincial Bank, Westminster Bank, and District Bank came together to form National Westminster Bank, NatWest (as it’s now known) is a large retail and commercial bank in the UK with over 14 million customers and has been part of Royal Bank of Scotland, one of the UK’s Big Four banks, since 2000. As a bit of trivia for London outsiders (and perhaps even some locals), NatWest built a corporate tower in 1980 that the footprint was designed around its logo; the building now houses other companies. To coincide with a new campaign — We are What we Do — NatWest recently introduced a revised logo.

A pleasing update that infuses the logo with a new story and a visual language that sets the road for engaging applications now and in the future.

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Mastercard

Established in 1966 as Interbank until 1968 and later known as Master Charge until 1979, MasterCard is a technology company in the global payments industry that — contrary to the perception that they issue credit cards — processes the payments between the banks of merchants and the card-issuing banks or credit unions of the purchasers. They operate the world’s fastest payments processing network and are active in more than 210 countries and territories.

Today, the digitization of commerce processes and increased connectivity of consumers is driving a digital transformation that will provide seamless payment choices — a demand that is clearly seen in the digital applications. The brand system is clean and establishes a clear style that stems from the simplicity and crispness of the logo.

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