You possess the deepest understanding of your brand—its roots, its aspirations, its objectives, and its unique company culture. However, when the moment arrives to express your brand attributes to a designer, you may encounter a difficulty in finding the right words.
Regrettably, although designers possess numerous skills, clairvoyance is not typically one of them. So, how can you effectively communicate the essence of your brand? Give a mood board a try!
What does a mood board entail and what is its significance?
A mood board serves as a visual compilation comprising diverse images, text, and other elements that encapsulate your brand and convey its identity. It can even serve as a reference point during the development of business projects, like a website. Whether you are embarking on a new business venture or reconsidering your current brand, a mood board holds immense value, as it:
- Inspiration. If you’re still in the process of working out your brand identity, a mood board will help bring things into focus, like company attributes, vision, identity, and the emotions you want your brand to convey.
- Affirmation. If you’re already sure of who you are, a mood board will affirm and support your brand identity. It will also help you translate concepts like culture and values into tangible things, like design.
- Guidance. A mood board that accurately reflects your brand can act as a guide to keep you focused on your brand identity when creating your logo, business cards, website, or other marketing materials.
- Communication. A mood board ensures that your designer, company principals and stakeholders understands your brand and your vision right from the start.
Is it better to create a digital or physical mood board?
The procedure of crafting your mood board doesn’t need to be intricate. The decision to gather images from the internet and create a digital collage or utilize foam board, Elmer’s glue, and magazines to assemble a physical one is entirely at your discretion.
Digital mood board
Creating a digital mood board has become incredibly convenient due to the wide range of online platforms offering impressive features:
Pinterest: Pinterest is a popular online service that enables you to gather images from curated “pinboards” created by others. The advantage of Pinterest lies in its organized collections, making it effortless to discover and select images that resonate with you.
Moodstream: Moodstream provides adjustable settings for image searches, along with idea-generation and mood board assisting tools. Its comprehensive filters, such as orientation, location, and image style, allow you to narrow down options and save time by filtering out irrelevant imagery.
Moodboard and Mooboard Lite: Moodboard is a tool that facilitates organizing, creating, and sharing collaborative mood boards on your iPad for a nominal fee of $9.99. It offers useful features for photo editing, exporting as PDF and PNG, and managing multiple boards. Moodboard Lite is the free version, providing the same convenient tools as the paid version, albeit limited to a single board.
Sampleboard: This digital mood board creation tool allows you to upload images and organize them into project files, which can be shared on social media or imported into documents. It boasts an intuitive and user-friendly interface, enabling you to achieve professional results that can be easily shared with others.
Choose your images and materials
Striking a balance: Having an excessive amount of imagery can lead to confusion and sensory overload, while too few elements may not provide sufficient guidance or information. To achieve a harmonious balance, begin with a larger selection of items and then gradually eliminate those that do not align with your criteria.
Focusing on your target: Direct your efforts towards your intended goal or objective. Consider the specific aims and objectives you have in mind as you curate the images and materials for your mood board.
Capture the essence: Seek out images and materials that effectively capture the desired brand emotions and communicate the brand’s identity. This includes qualities such as bravery, strength, leadership, energy, serenity, playfulness, seriousness, simplicity, sophistication, feistiness, or calmness. As you review the collection you’ve assembled, begin the process of narrowing down your choices.
Consider brand definition: Reflect on the images you have gathered and evaluate if they truly define your brand. For instance, if your target market might find flowers appealing, take a moment to assess whether this image accurately represents your brand. Alternatively, could your brand align better with the concept of a healing garden featuring a water fountain? Make decisions that align closely with your brand’s defining characteristics and values.
Maintain consistency: Maintain consistency by focusing on your message and avoiding personal preferences when creating your mood board. Assess each element’s alignment with your brand and target audience to ensure cohesion and purposefulness.
What to include
Unleash your creativity and elevate your mood board with these innovative ideas:
- Explore a range of options for your visuals, such as classic photos, vintage illustrations, or trendy images. Think outside the box and consider using your own photographs to add a unique touch.
- Take advantage of advanced technology like Pinterest’s visual search tool, Lens. This feature allows you to use your mobile device’s camera to identify objects and find related images on Pinterest. Experiment with capturing various objects, from food and furniture to the night sky, and incorporate the suggested images into your mood board.
By incorporating diverse and inventive imagery, you can elevate the visual impact of your mood board and bring a fresh perspective to your brand communication.
Consider the colors that define your brand beyond just the color of your packaging. Look for colors that evoke the same emotions as your brand. Ask yourself if patriotism is a sentiment your brand embodies, similar to the mood board showcasing iconic British imagery. (You can almost hear “God Save the Queen” when you look at it, can’t you?) Alternatively, does your brand convey brightness and happiness, as depicted in the eye-popping yellow mood board? Determine whether your colors should lean towards warm or cool tones, and whether they should be muted or bold.
By carefully selecting colors that align with your brand’s emotions and desired message, you can effectively convey the essence of your brand through your mood board.
Patterns and shapes
Incorporate organic shapes found in nature to evoke feelings of tranquility and calm on your mood board. These shapes can add a sense of harmony and serenity to the overall composition. On the other hand, repeating patterns can bring visual energy and movement to your mood board, capturing attention and creating a dynamic visual experience.
Pulling it all together
With your collected materials and images sorted, it’s time to arrange them on your mood board. Focus on key themes by using larger images as focal points, and surround them with smaller images or materials that support and reinforce your intended message. By strategically positioning your elements, you can create a cohesive and visually compelling mood board that effectively communicates your brand.
Producing a mood board for your new business is the first step in developing your brand. It serves as a guide for creating impactful marketing and helps shape a memorable brand identity package.