Substance 151: Modular design systems and visual vocabularies

30 04 2009

By contributing guest author Ida Cheinman, Principal and Creative Director of Substance 151, a strategic design agency for Green Printer‘s “Design Goes Green” series.

We live in a time when “sustainability” is topping the buzzword charts and a wave of greenwashing is flooding the mainstream. We live in a time of intense competition, gloomy economic forecasts and rapidly disappearing marketing budgets, but also in a time when more and more companies and organizations strive to uphold higher environmental and social values, making the shift to the triple bottom line economic model. Sustainability and social responsibility are the forces that drive many of today’s business decisions; they also change the way organizations re-think their branding and marketing strategies. As marketers and business leaders, we are faced with the challenge of finding differentiation by creating empowering and memorable brand experiences for our audiences in the increasingly crowded sustainable marketplace.

So, What are the rules? Read the rest of this entry »



Wild, green business card ideas to re-ignite your brand

22 04 2009

So, the economy is down the tubes and it’s all over the tube.

Why not take this time to incubate your business (from a caterpillar into a butterfly metamorphosis, if you will) and re-invest in your brand.

This is likely a slower client year than most businesses may be used to so lack of time is no excuse not to get started. And money?  When business is scarce for your retail neighbours down the street, consider that suppliers may be more willing than usual to negotiate high volume orders. Read the rest of this entry »



Truly Green – Eco-friendly Printing + Research = Success

15 04 2009

A special guest post by Aaron Schoenberger for Green Printer‘s ‘Design Goes Green’ blog.

A common misconception, one that I’ve seen a thousand times, is the idea that simply printing on recycled mediums, with soy ink, will make one’s marketing materials green. In essence, it’s not only the printing that makes a company green, but also the research and time spent identifying target markets, concocting copy that’s both precise and somewhat vague at the same time, limiting the want to send promotional material to everyone on the planet, and a host of other factors that, if not done properly, will result in a slap on the wrist from good ole’ Mother Earth. Read the rest of this entry »



Green Printer’s top picks for ‘meaningful’ Earth Day marketing

9 04 2009

Earth Day takes place this April 22nd.

As a green leader or entrepreneur, the day begs the question, what will you be doing?

In a mad public relations world that anchors on events as a tangible “touch point” in lieu of diving into the messier (and harder to track or control) world of ‘awareness’, Earth Day is one of many symbols (i.e. polar bears) we use when speaking to some of the starker and concrete practices of the planet’s ecological anxieties. Read the rest of this entry »



StepUp Communications: Branding and identity means ‘organizing information’

1 04 2009

Green Printer speaks with Sigrid Albert, Principal and Art Director of StepUp Communications, a company that focuses on creative services for internal communications.

A Green Printer ‘Design Goes Green’ dispatch. A post by contributing writer Melissa Chungfat.

Some of your clients integrate sustainability in their business. What advice would you give to green start-up businesses in terms of identity and design?

Having a clear vision and direction for your company is the first step. From there, you can create your visual identity. Green businesses already have clear values to communicate, which makes it easier to design for them. Their visual identity should reflect what the business does and the best thing is for them to follow through with their promise. Be clear about what your strengths are and the direction your business is going, and designers can help with that process.

What value does design bring in terms of brand equity?

Design has a lot of value and good design will go beyond the product to allow for interpretation. Design establishes a professional look and there is an intangible quality that comes from a good identity that portrays trust. It’s important to keep in mind that the best logo is not going to help you if you don’t have a strong business plan. Read the rest of this entry »