Case Study: Brand Aesthetic

 
 
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September 26, 2019

by: Jaimie Love,
Marketing Director at Social School


Branding doesn’t have to mean putting your logo into the top corner of a photo - especially on social media. In addition to looking junky and sales-y, your followers already know which page they’re on, they don’t need to be reminded.

The most prominent form of branding on social media, Instagram in particular, is through the strategic use of fonts and colours.

Companies who post thoughtful content that aligns with brand standards and is visually appealing has the ability to achieve the ‘brand recognition’ we all crave, without having to chuck a logo on the photo.

Here are a few case studies that I believe drive home the idea that strategic cohesion is the biggest brand advocate.

Case Study #1: Lush Cosmetics North America

Not only are they using colour strategically to enhance their feed and create cohesion among the photos, but they are also posting product photos without being obnoxious. Seeing the same product in its packaging on an Instagram feed can get tired, so these guys decided to shake it up! The company is posting photos of ingredients, the product being used and the simple photo of product packaging which creates a beautiful array of photographs that has turned their feed into a visual testament to the brand.

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Case Study #2: La Croix Sparkling Water

La Croix wins Instagram. I know it’s not a competition, but if it was - La Croix would win.

They are absolutely nailing the content game right now with catchy copy and enticing visuals. They have thought of everything, from their cute and quirky bio to their beautifully branded Highlight graphics. The consistency helps tell their brand story without having to spell it out. Just by looking at the feed, you already know that the brand is cheerful, friendly and youthful - which appeals directly to their ideal customer. 


Case Study #3: Jillian Harris

It is possible to create brand cohesion for a person, too - it’s not just something that companies are drawn to. Jillian Harris is SLAYING the game, and it’s all thanks to presets. A preset is a configuration of settings that is designed to achieve a specific look. These are being used as a way to develop brand aesthetic and maintain visual consistency. When presets are used, photos are edited in the same way - so even if some photos were taken in poor lighting, the preset will auto-correct and filter the image to match the rest. In essence, presets are used to create the image of a perfectly curated magazine-type feed.

Jillian Harris is the queen of presets. I’d be lying to you if I said I hadn’t purchased her preset package for Lightroom. If I had to describe her presets and feed in two words, they would be ‘light and airy’. Her feed has a constant glow and general warmth that welcomes viewers into her life. Her brand and presets elude to the fact that her brand is very curated and polished. Her house is always immaculate, she has beautiful kidlets and her husband is a babe. Whether this is her real life or not - it doesn’t matter.

Her brand is clean, light, bright, airy, curated and polished - and so is her feed.

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Case Study #4: Suzy Holman

Where Jillian Harris is #Goals, SimplySuzys is #RealLife and quite frankly, I AM HERE FOR IT. While Jillian Harris uses her presets to give the impression of pristine perfection, Suzy’s aesthetic is much more edgy, moody and, for lack of a better word, RELATABLE. Bright and airy wouldn’t match her brand and the real, raw, messy and crazy content she’s posting. Her preset is more saturated with significant contrast, which ultimately makes the colours pop.

Her posts depict what real life looks like - crying in the pantry, a mild addiction to McDonald’s, bikes in the living room and kids going bananas. Using these edgy and strong photo effects has given her feed the feeling of liveliness and action - which is a direct reflection of her brand and who she is.

Don’t worry if you’re creatively challenged! As the saying goes “there’s an app for that,” and we have a few favourites that we use on a daily basis.

For photo editing and presets:

  1. Instasize

  2. VSCO

  3. Lightroom

For Instagram feed planning:

  1. Later

  2. Planoly

Good luck creating your perfect feed aesthetic, and happy posting!
Let us know if there are any apps or presets you love.