Branding and design are an important aspect of marketing an entity no matter the size or sector, and charity branding is no different. Creating emotionally powerful branding for a charity or non-governmental organisation (NGO) presents challenges not seen in regular business branding, but can easily be overcome with well thought out design elements that present a powerful message.
1. First thing’s first; defining your message and purpose.
Charities and NGO’s are generated by a powerful message and purpose, but it is important to define and incorporate that message into the branding and design. Be clear and thorough with the key messaging and concisely define the purpose so the charity branding and design can closely follow.
To create a strong visual impact, the charity name should be no more than 3 words and should work in unison with the tagline. The charity name, tagline and logo should be iconic elements of the brand that work together, whilst also being strong enough to be recognised on their own. This will allow effective communication in different forms, as well as the creation of smooth and cohesive charity branding.
2. The right colour palette
Colour palettes are an important charity branding element and represent far more than an attractive interface. Considering the right colour palette for a charity will often have in-depth conceptual reasoning, so charities need to beware of falling into the negative colour cliches, such as overbearing on pink for women and garish green for the environment. The finalised colour palette is to be relevant and consistent across all branded collateral.
Bearing in mind the different mediums that the charity branding will be present on, using solid colours is a good starting point. Solid colours make sure that the emotional impact of the logo or imagery is not lost, for example when gradients are used or when there is not enough contrast.
3. Balance of composition/elements
All brand elements should effectively work together and separately. They should be cohesive enough to work together as one, whilst being strong enough to stand on their own. Certain elements will have more significance such as the logo, as logos are often used individually throughout different mediums thus need to be more memorable. A common mistake is to go overboard on the composition, and in charity branding it is true that less is more.
4. Make it future proof
Making charity branding futureproof is essential, especially if there is a strong message attached to it. Taking the time to build the right branding and design will ensure the longevity of the cause and reduces the risk of losing any progress made. As trends change, it is more beneficial to adapt the brand for a more modern feel whilst maintaining the core message than it is to completely re-brand and start from scratch.
5. Make it memorable
Successful charity branding can be seen across a range of NGO’s who are always backed by minimal design. While the charity logo itself has to incorporate great design, it needs to be consistent enough throughout the branding without overloading the user. The simpler the logo, the more memorable and useable it is.
Need help with your charity branding?
Foundry Digital work with clients worldwide to create bespoke, branded websites optimised with your goal in mind. We have a creative eye for design coupled with a sound understanding of technology and print to ensure your charity branding follows the appropriate guidelines with a strong and cohesive image.