This is an example of branding across multiple mediums and formats. My online print and web portfolios display all pieces produced in each media, but a great deal of thought and planning goes into each piece fitting within a larger body of work that supports the overall goals of the brand.
Goldspot aims to achieve the recognition as a forward thinking, customer-friendly, online pen shop. Besides shopping on the website, the 48-page catalog serves as the off-line centerpiece for sales. Below is a sample of the on-line version (hosted by ISSUU) of the catalog.
The approach is simple, clean and with a well-aligned layout. The catalog was mailed out to over 40,000 addresses in the United States and included in 10,000 shipments and counting. As it became later in the year and new product was introduced, we included a half-fold, 4-page addendum flier that refreshed our customers on the new items and specials that are being offered.
Another piece of marketing material included in shipments is a giveaway bookmark. This was designed as a functional coupon. My wife still uses it to this day to keep her place while reading.
One of the key focus points to these designs is to show off the product. Most of the manufacturers can supply good quality product photography, and it is essential to display this to the consumer without them being distracted by a busy supporting design. In the bookmark, you see the front side features a lengthwise display of the pen and a subtle patterned gradient to make the pen “pop” from the paper.
The advertisement in Pen World also features one product that dominates the design, while keeping with the value of being a cutting-edge pen company.
Of course, with being an ecommerce site, there is a big focus on doing web graphics and enticing customers with a call to action to bring them to the website and convert them to a sale. The most effective tool for driving sales is the e-mail newsletter. Below is a screenshot and you can find the HTML version of the e-mail here.
The use of reflected images, soft gradients, clean type and well-used product photography presents the above-board value that each of the presented brands can offer the customer. This e-mail example was sent out just this past week. Traffic doubled the day we sent the e-mail and sustained very well with over +50% difference the day after. Opens, clicks and conversions were above average as well.
To promote an exclusive Goldspot pen, a series of banners were created to be used for Google AdSense image banner units on relevant websites and blogs. Again, the product takes center stage (photographed and retouched by me in this particular occasion) and the checkered flag element is used to illustrate the “Formula One” concept, while mirroring the branding on the custom packaging.
The Exclusive Formula Red packaging truly adds another layer of exclusivity to the product, as no other retailer has the product, or has ever designed alternate packaging themselves.
Note the checkered flag pattern that signifies the carbon fiber pattern on the pen barrel, while illustrating the racing theme. Red racing stripes are on the narrower sides of the box. The specially designed box gives an extra value to those who are gifting the pen or collecting. Although it is not much of a consideration online, the box also helps with the merchandising of the product when presented in a physical space alongside other items. Below is our table at the Philadelphia Pen Show, which I had organized and created the Goldspot poster for.
The left photo was taken as we were closing up for the day, but you can notice the podium set up with the large banner, complete with the company logo and the subtle logos of the brands that are available at the store. The right picture shows part of the table display, including the Formula Red exclusive pens which are raised up in the back, sitting atop their boxes.
In closing, branding takes effort to be polished and present yourself in the best light possible at every point of communication with the consumer. It is necessary to communicate your business’ unique selling proposition and values to the client or prospect with each piece of marketing collateral.