Mark Ritson: Mastercard’s wordless logo shows the power of distinctive brand codes

Marketing Week 09 Jan 2019 04:02

Stay away from logos, pantones and fonts. That’s always been my credo when it comes to the more graphical elements of brand management. It’s also the advice I give to all my clients when it comes to their own personal reputation within the company they work for.

Most senior people in their organisation almost certainly see the word ‘marketer’ as synonymous with ‘muppet’ and regard brand management as being roughly analogous to the colouring-in department. You might get a positive response when you start talking pantones or showing the executive team the powerful new font you want to use. But as soon as you leave the room there is much shaking of heads and polite career-killing hilarity.

Use your agencies or your junior people to talk about the graphical elements of branding; your personal reputation cannot afford to be within 10 yards of a mood board. Stick to the strategic and financial areas of branding at all costs. Brand is ultimately about making enormous amounts of money that would, otherwise, be unachievable. Talk price, gross margin and intangible asset value. Stay away from anything that has you explaining ‘a consistent look and feel’ or the ‘impact of Helvetica’ on consumers.

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