Do you ever get tired of brands using the same fonts, aesthetics, and layouts over, and over, and over again? Yeah, us too. With so much saturation in the marketing space, brands are looking to stand out aesthetically by breaking out of their comfort zones in both digital and print platforms.

Each year, it becomes increasingly important for brands to stand out as they struggle to break through the clutter of communication. After all, the goal of any brand is to remain relevant to its target audience while delivering a quality product. One primary tactic that brands use to stay relevant is consistently rethinking the design of their advertisements and marketing materials. This means updating their “aesthetics, vibes, etc.” as millennials like to call them, and being engaging to differentiate themselves from the competition.

As we can tell so far, this persistent quest for differentiation will continue far into the forseeable future. The name of the game? Disruption.

Like Apple used to say, “Think Different.”

In today’s business environment, it seems like everything has been done before (which it probably has), so the effort to come up with unprecedented ideas is all the more powerful. We’re seeing brands attempt to “think different” through the use of vivid colors and bold typography as opposed to the more neutral tones that were popular in years past. Brands are also looking to be more unique in their background imagery and design layouts that they use, hoping to give consumers something new and fresh to draw their focus.

We’ve all seen, and grown tired of, classic marketing stock photos. Brands are paying attention to consumers’ boredom with the same old song and dance – Keep an eye out for some new takes on the OG stock photos moving forward, such as the use of Polaroid imagery and amateur-esque photos to make brands seem more personal and authentic.

The revival of retro.

Many brands are feeling nostalgic, and are incorporating design trends of the past into their current aesthetic. Art Deco, Gatsby-esque patterns are becoming increasingly popular, and as much as we’d all like to leave this decade in the past, we’re also seeing a return of 80s-esque prints (think leopard, snakeskin, and other eye-catching “party prints”) to breathe more life and personality into brand imagery.

Brands are attempting to fuse these styles with more futuristic designs utilizing 3D perspectives, psychedelic patterns, and neon colors. They’re intended to transport audience members into a new viewing experience- the design trends of the future if you will- while also paying homage to the patterns and designs of the past.

Prepare your elevator pitch.

While futuristic patterns are catching fire, we’re also seeing a trend towards parsed-down content. As consumer attention spans are decreasing and the competitive landscape is growing, brands are focusing on being more direct in their messaging through simplified designs. It’s similar to an elevator pitch – brands are looking to be clear, consistent, and concise in their promotional materials.

Simplification is becoming especially popular in the design of video advertising. Take, for example,  Google’s five-second YouTube video ads that launched in 2018. Through the brand’s satirical take on common consumer complaints in the technology space, like lack of photo space, inability to find a wireless network when roaming, etc., Google is able to engage with, and be relatable to, consumers while also working within a very short time frame.

TL;DR: Get your thinking caps on, it’s time to get creative.

Thinking “different,” creating content that is both reminiscent and futuristic, and vibrant but simplified visuals are only three of the trends we’ve seen in the graphic design space this year. What will ultimately disrupt the design world will be the race among brands trying to capture consumers before their competitors.

Not sure where to get started? Have no fear, TMG is here to help you with all of your design challenges. Contact us to learn more about how our team can help you tackle all of your creative needs, and help you get noticed.