The Brand Message

Communication in Design: the KISS Principle still applies. 

KISS is an acronym for “Keep it simple, stupid” a design principle noted by the U.S. Navy in 1960 which states that most systems work best if they are kept simple rather than made complicated. Design schools for decades have taught that simplicity should be a key goal in design and unnecessary complexity should be avoided. However, communication in design has changed.

Good design is about going beyond the expected to seek out innovative solutions that get our attention and delight. To compel us to stop, look and think. Good design is influenced by local events, the community, the country and is kept abreast of the world at large by staying current with and influenced by global change. We are so overwhelmed by the barrage of information out there vying for our attention that we’ve learned to block most of it. We’ve gotten smart at fine-tuning our attention towards information relevant to us. We’ve become sensitive to marketing hype. Now there is a hunger for transparent honesty and self-expression, even in the corporate world, toward a fresher, less scripted approach in communication. Good conversations and stories that touch our hearts and stirs the soul.

As a visual communicator who also writes copy for the website and print media, I can attest that some of the ground rules still apply: keep your message simple enough to remember but with enough impact so people will want to share and repeat it. Through personal stories, told with authenticity and with a clear message.

1. Authenticity  2. Clarity  3. Continuity

1. Authenticity: When you speak your truth, people will listen if it comes from a place of personal conviction. This invites authentic dialogue. Personalizing your message to sound less like marketing and more human will attract a more receptive audience. So that what you say and who you are is the same.

2. Clarity: Your message is clear, concise + easily understood. Make clever use of white space to set the stage and allow room for the message to be heard. Minimizing the distraction of visual “noise”in order to cohesively align the elements together. Matching the voice with the appropriate font.

3. Continuity: Your message is the same on whatever platform you are on. Using the same font across platforms. The repeated use of the logo as the visual voice of the business and a means to build brand presence across all print and web media platforms.

Coming from a less scripted, more authentic place will bode well to stimulate dialogue, ensure better communication, inspire personal connectivity through heartfelt rapport and ultimately create credibility + trust with an engaged audience.


Vancouver Graphic Designer with 20+ years experience. What's YOUR passion? Asking the right questions is key to finding solutions that align to your business vision. Using a strategy plan as the road map to get there.

Posted in Consistency, Continuity, Good Design