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Concrete brand talk in an ephemeral world

Brand Manifestations: Timbuk2 & Domino’s

As designers of brand identity and strategy, the first part of our work is an excavation into a brand, digging deep to understand what makes that organization great and unique. When we find these nuggets, it’s our job to polish, fashion, and rework them into visuals, strategy and ideas — a cohesive voice for each client. This is challenging and satisfying work that not all designers get to do, so it’s exciting for us to see other examples out in the world — manifestations, if you will, of the nuggets we all search for.

So, in that spirit, this occassional feature will showcase brands who are putting their “souls” out there in unique and engaging ways. The marketplace is a challenging arena, so we hope to bring some encouragement and inspiration from these brand moments, even if we didn’t have a hand in creating them.

Timbuk2 makes custom travel bags, messenger and other kinds. They state that the company was “born in a San Francisco garage and bred on the backs of messengers in the city streets.” A few weeks ago I received my new 17″ laptop messenger bag from them, in this plastic shipping bag.

Timbuk2 bag
Timbuk2 bag detail

I think the images speak (loudly) for themselves, and for the roots, feel, and heart of the Timbuk2 brand.

Domino’s Pizza
Much has been made of the latest Domino’s Pizza campaign that centers around their newly-formulated pizza flavor and ingredients. It’s an uphill battle to change any brand’s image, and even gutsier to question its soul by admitting your primary product tasted like cardboard.

But they did it, and it seems this brutually honest new set of values has taken hold in a big way. Domino’s has now made a pledge to go against the grain with their food photography, promising not to use food styling or fake ingredients to depict their ‘za. Building on these new brand foundations, they are soliciting un-retouched photos of their new pizza. What a bold way to back up your new brand approach.

Dominos Pizza photos submitted

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13 Responses to “Brand Manifestations: Timbuk2 & Domino’s”

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    That Timbuk2 bag is awesome. I’ve coveted their messenger bags for a while now….I’d love to get me one someday.

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