As we settle into the new year, gone are the days where bland, stiff and impersonal B2B branding reigned supreme. Now, B2B businesses can fully embrace their more playful and creative sides and express their values through smart design.
As devout observers of graphic design trends, we’ve settled on the following five trends as being the most prolific in 2019; through their sheer popularity as well as their ease of application in the world of B2B.
1. A Single Signature Colour
While multi-tonal brand colour palettes still have their place, we’ve witnessed more and more brands embracing a signature colour in their design. Think ‘Tiffany Blue’ and of course, ‘DMA Partners Yellow’!
The scientific basis for this is quite simple, according to research by Color Communications Inc, within the first 90 seconds of noticing your brand, colour determines 62-90% of consumers' impressions.
While we wouldn’t go quite so far as to agree that a signature colour could replace a logo, it certainly is an incredibly effective branding element when executed well.
If you’re interested in learning more about the role of colour in branding and design, check out this in-depth summary.
As websites become more dynamic and fluid, we’re noticing an interesting shift away from the ‘boxy’ designs of the early internet era in favour of asymmetrical designs.
In breaking free from design grids, websites designed with asymmetrical elements feel more natural, and as a result, more real.
Want to see an example of asymmetrical design in action? Check out TechFlow’s website for inspiration!
3. Living Coral
Where would any self-respecting design trends article be without mention of the iconic Pantone ‘Colour of the Year’?
This year’s colour is named ‘Living Coral’ which is described as “an animating and life-affirming coral hue with a golden undertone that energizes and enlivens with a softer edge.”
This lovely shade can bring a sense of depth and warmth that is often missing in B2B design. It could be used as a signature colour, or indeed an accent colour to highlight specific elements on a landing page, for example.
4. Retro Illustrations
The saying “everything old is new again” rings true, especially when we consider the recent surge in the popularity of retro illustrations.
Nostalgia is having a real “moment” in pop culture, and this has naturally trickled into the world of B2B design.
So what does it look like in practice in a B2B context? Think pops of vibrant colour, simple shapes and vintage fonts, as shown below in a project we carried out for Amadeus.
With 5G mobile connectivity on the horizon, we expect to see much richer website experiences being delivered by B2B brands. A lightweight, yet immersive way to make an instant impact is to incorporate cinemagraphs into your website design.
Cinemagraphs are short looping videos with minor movements that create depth and interest and are much more eye-catching than still images. Think of it as a close relative of the ever-popular GIF.
A single cinemagraph can tell a story or convey a feeling or concept without the need for slabs of text, which is essential in a world where busy people value their time above (almost) all else.
There is a myriad of ways in which you can use cinemagraphs, such as: on your website homepage, on a product or service landing page, on your social media accounts and, of course, in digital advertising. In fact, a study by Flixel showed that cinemagraphs can generate 5.6x more click-throughs than still images. With stats as impressive as this, it’s certainly worth split-testing in your next campaign!
So there you have it - our top 5 predictions for the B2B design trends that will dominate this year.
Are there any other trends that stand out to you so far? We’d love to hear from you! Tweet us @DMA_Partners and let us know your thoughts.
If you want to update your branding and marketing materials while incorporating some of this year’s biggest trends, get in touch with Philip Martin to discover how we can help: firstname.lastname@example.org.