This might seem like a small and insignificant detail â€“ but your company stationery can say a lot about your business. In an era where information and details can be exchanged at the touch of a digital button (we have long since forsaken actual buttons for touch screens), you need to be savvy about your stationery. Itâ€™s called upon to take up arms in the front line of brand recognition, and you canâ€™t under estimate what those little details mean.
Paper: The paper and pads you use in your meetings â€“ are they branded with you own company logo and information, or are they the cheapest knock off brand from the pound shop? It may be true that some people think paper is paper, and that it doesnâ€™t matter what it looks like, but there are a lot of people who disagree. Human beings judge others very quickly, and often on small things that might seem insignificant â€“ like the type of pad you are writing your meeting notes on. If you are using branded stationery (and we highly recommend you do for a number of reasons) you have a variety of paper weights, colours and grades to chose from. For example â€“ using a heavier weight of paper denotes quality and attention to detail. Recycled paper can be thinner and might appear cheaper â€“ but it does endorse a care and concern for the environment â€“ and this could help you gain the approval of some customers. Think about what really matters to your company, and design your stationery around this.
Ink: Hopefully this goes beyond what your favourite colour is, or what happened to be in the pen pot. The ink colours you use in your company (both printed and ink in pens) identity can portray different messages, and this is something you should think about. John Williams recently provided a thorough rundown of what colours can mean to a companies identity â€“ including that warmer colours like red and yellow send an energetic message, whereas cooler colours like blue increases vibrancy and reduces reserve.
Typeface: Your typeface (otherwise referred to as a font) can be just as expressive as the most intricate and detailed of logos. Think about visibility, and what you want your font choices to say about your company. A thicker font can give a strong prescience on the page, while a cursive and thinner font gives a softer, more approachable feel.
Layout: Even in something as simple as a mail shot there are a thousand different ways you can lay things out, and each one should be thought through with care. Words and pictures can be powerful tools, and when placed in the wrong order they can play off each other in an entirely different way. Badly chosen layout gives off a sloppy impression, and clients may think you donâ€™t give enough attention to detail, but good layout can have the opposite, more desirable effect.
Logo: This is the element that you might have spent the most time designing. Itâ€™s part of your brand identity, and you have spent so much time and money on it â€“ so of course itâ€™s going to be included in your stationery. but even here there are cost implications â€“ not to mention layouts and scaling. Some things cost most to print in colour than black and white â€“ so how would it affect your company to have your logo in greyscale? What message would that send?