Does your organisation have a common thread?

A brochure is an indispensable element in your bequest strategy. It showcases your organisation. How does such a brochure come about? What is the reflection behind it? Annelies, our in-house Designer, will take you through the visual side of the process. Your organisation already has a mission and a vision - but it also deserves a visual common thread.

You'd expect me to get straight to work after a new briefing. On the contrary, I don't do anything at first. That is to say: I'm not starting to design.

My first job is to think. And read up on the matter. What exactly does this organisation do? What does it want to achieve? Who do they need for that? This is how I look for the unique common thread that runs through an organisation. This common thread ensures that the brochure feels like a whole.

An example to illustrate this. For the cystic fibrosis organisation I was looking for images that have a link with breathing, oxygen, dreams, desire, ... The link seems subtle at first sight. But I know: when I feel it, the readers will notice it too.

There are two musts that return for any organisation.

  1. The brochure must have a high feel-good factor

    When someone opens the bequest brochure, it should feel like a warm feeling from home: cosy in front of the fireplace, with a fluffy blanket over your feet and a nice cup of coffee. Because only when the reader feels comfortable can he or she think about the future.

    The question the reader asks himself: does this organisation deserve my bequest?

    In a draft, that corresponds to:

    - Fresh, positive colours - no sombre or dark tones.
    - An airy design with a lot of space.
    - Creating an atmosphere does not mean filling pages with a lot of text.

  2. The brochure should make you dream away

    A legacy still revolves around the difficult theme of dying. That's why my design places less emphasis on the infinite, and more on immortality. Because with a bequest you help people even when you are no longer there. You get a positive feeling from the many possibilities.

    The question the reader asks himself: how do I make the difference with my bequest?

    In a draft, that corresponds to:

    - Atmospheric, warm images that appeal to the imagination.
    - It can be interpreted in many ways; everyone sees something different in it

How do you handle all that in concrete terms?

- Create a mood board of images, depending on the theme of the organisation.
- Find your common thread.
- Determine your colour palette.
- Remember not to put too much text on a page. The copywriter won't like to hear it, but a picture says more than a thousand words.
- Make sure it is easy to read for young and old: choose a large font and not too much reverse print (white letters on a coloured background).

Author: Annelies
Graphic designer