AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

MarketingWhat’s Hot in Design Now

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What’s Hot in Design Now

Tiffini BlogAs Steve Jobs said, “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”

Design trends come and go. However, trends do not simply emerge for a year and then disappear like a cloud of smoke. Rather, trends become popular and gradually fizzle out without much warning or notice. So, what does this mean to a designer? Even if we don’t want to jump on the bandwagon, it is important to know the trends to keep our designs fresh. Ultimately we need to decide how to best use the trend to create something interesting and unique for our clients, while being careful not to overdo it.

The Pantone Fashion Color Report for Spring of 2016 notes that bright, bold, vibrant statement hues are the suggested HOT colors this year. Colors like: “Fiesta” and “Snorkel Blue.” Even the names feel bright and bold.

Typography seems to be following suit. Bold statements, playful sans-serif typefaces and letter stacking are the center of attention this year. Typography is paving the way for dramatic and creative designs.

If you are a child of the 80s you may be taken back to your childhood with some of the trends in design this year. Watch for retro styles inspired by the 80s and 90s, which include bold colors, pixel art, playful geometric designs and crazy patterns.

So here is something to think about: Following trends, just to be “trendy” isn’t always a good idea. Ask yourself a few questions before you jump on the bandwagon:

  • Does it fit my brand?
  • Does it speak to my target audience?

And remember this trend that never goes out of style: Your design must make an emotional connection with your audience. If it lacks emotion, it won’t be memorable. Make an impact, and, like Steve Jobs says, make sure “it works.”

“To create something exceptional, your mindset must be relentlessly focused on the smallest detail.” — Giorgio Armani

Written by:

Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle.

After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant.

He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.”

Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.”

One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College.

Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board.

Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.