LOGO DESIGN + LAUNCH MUSIC VIDEO (don't miss at the bottom 👇)
Meredith Digital: Launching the Brand Identity (for the largest magazine publisher in the world).
If the publisher name Meredith isn't familiar to you– I bet you'd still recognize their magazines:
In 2013 while working at Meredith's in-house Branded Content services agency in New York City, I was tasked to design the identity for Meredith Digital (our soon to be official public-facing name which would mark the conglomerate publisher's shift of resources into the digital ad-tech space).
Branded Content: A Quick Primer
Branded Content is essentially the evolution of the print advertorial (a paid editorial; a paid feature story). Looking at a post-print world, each publication title has digital properties: their own social media pages, email lists, websites, online contests and promotions, community forums – so with this now comes the opportunity for brands to buy space in a way that can be more creative, more useful, and hopefully not feel so... paid for.
Timeline to deliver? 3 weeks. The new logo identity was going to be unveiled at the annual corporate sales conference in Iowa–Meredith Corporation's home base. Also, not just unveiled, but unveiled through a music video I had to create using crowdsourced employee responses to the question: "What's your favorite D word?". More on that later.
For Round 1 of logo exploration, the brief was broad: to highlight the D in Meredith Digital. Below are a few buckets for feels we thought had legs leaving Week 1:
Starting off Week Two, we got feedback to simplify down to a wordmark rather than a brandmark. Meaning: whatever customization we did with the D would have to live inside the name Meredith Digital itself. Goodbye cute graphics above! 😭
Hm... still not quite what they wanted.
The executive team had more feedback: first, they really liked the highlighted pink d in meredith from one of the earlier explorations.
Second, we needed to include icons in the logo to show Meredith's four core pillar audiences: Moms, Homes, Lifestyle and Food.
The 2.5 Week Mark
Almost there, we just needed to include the word digital, then connect the word Meredith to the word Digital, and we needed an animated version of the logo.
Funny story: the animation above is actually entirely made in CSS. I didn't know After Effects then (I do now), but I could animate via code. So I made do– wrote the animation, did a screen recording, and shipped it off for approval. I was pretty impressed with that hack and 1 day left to go.
Last edit, include the tagline:
The new tag line “mobilizing women” speaks to Meredith Digital’s ability to inspire millions of women to live their dreams and everyday life in between, via brand extensions across multiple devices and screens including mobile, social, web and tablet. –Press Release.
Wait!... what about that employee-crowdsourced music video?
I took the folder of raw video clips in one hand, and reached up to the gods with my other – give me some divine inspiration?
They got back to me and said: Can we make them rap to "Baby Got Back"?
[2 Adobe Premiere Pro days later...]: 👇
Making this video was my personal favorite part of the project. I took what little I had to work with, and turned it out into a lot. Plus, I got to execute this as entirely my own creative baby. The internal team loved it, and the sales reps got a kick out of it. Project gone well!