When designing creative executions, visual continuity is key – especially in today’s media cluttered world. Alex White in his book The Elements of Graphic Design says the goal of graphic design is to achieve visual unity or harmony. In an individual piece this applies to the organization of all the parts into a unified whole. All the parts no matter how different must be reconciled so they support each other. This also applies to individual pieces in a campaign. White puts it another way when saying that the “elements must work together with the greatest interest to the reader and with the least resistance from the reader.
I believe maintaining that visually continuity is especially challenging between traditional advertising mediums and the expansion of new digital forms. But I think I found an example of a brand that is doing it very well. I once again point to the Pepsi refresh project.
This was a brilliant integrated campaign built on a social media strategy but they use many traditional and non-traditional forms of marketing. And as I think you can see in picture below the visual elements of the campaign are all tied together well.
What you should notice in the examples is the design of the campaign is very simple and brilliant because it starts with the product – package design. From there they pull colors and the logo to make a simple and very appealing design in magazines/print ads, billboards, microsite, blog, Twitter, YouTube and a toolkit brochure.
Do you think it is too simple or is that where the brilliance comes? Even across traditional and digital mediums Pepsi is achieving harmonious, unified design.
Digital unity is so important these days that it has literally changed the way we work. The traditional creative team has expanded from a copywriter and art director to include a web designer as well. Throw in a PR person and you’ve got a real integrated marketing team.