Why Illustration Led Branding Makes Sense in the World of F&B
In a seemingly bottomless ocean of online content, companies live or die by their brand image. A brand image has to express the company’s value proposition and engage with consumers, who should instantly recognize it across several touchpoints, even away from the company’s website and other platforms. A strong brand image is like an anchor, ensuring the customer is attached to the brand and the associations are always positive. Brand image is typically a composite of various visual elements — logos, color palette, a particular typeface, etc.
Visuals remain one of the most powerful and arresting means of communication both online and offline. They are one of the most visible and evocative elements of a brand identity, and illustration can play a key, powerful part in this. Why? Because illustrations introduce narrative elements to visual content and allow for subtler emotions or more complex situations to be expressed. Including human figures makes ideas active and accessible, often in a light-hearted or whimsical way. Illustrations turn away from realism and let you build the world as the brand sees it, with virtually zero limits.
This is an important piece in the larger puzzle of online campaigns. Digital design, using vectors, favors clean, bold images which translate well into distinctive branding illustrations. Rather than single-use designs, these online illustrations are being used as part of comprehensive visual systems.
At Wololo, we realise the potential of illustrations to truly change the face of branding when it comes to F&B or FMCG. The culinary world affords us the luxury of uninhibited ingenuity — the permutations and combinations are endless. In this space, the power of illustration is unparalelled. Having worked with an eclectic assortment of F&B brands for both branding and digital marketing, it’s safe to say that illustrations can be an integral asset in giving your brand an edge. Illustrations have often been used in packaging design, in the form of a cute singular mascot on a cereal box or to minimally show ingredients in a packet of chips; but largely, the use of food photography has dominated the F&B sector. All of that is changing though, brands are beginning to realise the importance of illustrations in their overall branding and are making it the hero element of their visual identity.
Think about how anime food clips have taken over the world and are considered to be the epitome of food porn. Illustrations go beyond the tangible nature of food, and seem to capture the whimsy; better than a photograph can. When it comes to food, it is famously known that you eat with your eyes first. Thus, when creating a food brand, it is essential to make the visual identity appetizing, engaging and memorable – all of which, I believe, can be perfectly achieved through cleverly used illustrations.