Illustrative Branding

Not long ago we posted a blog about Casper’s eye-catching NYC Subway advertising campaign that features witty, wistful illustrations. It seems that they’ve started a trend, and StreetEasy recently jumped on the illustration train with a similar campaign of their own.

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Illustrative Branding

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Illustrative Branding

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Illustrative Branding

In addition engaging illustrations, the advertisements deliver humor both about the city itself and its inhabitants. The latter provides a somewhat narcissistic / masochistic pleasure, allowing each viewer to witness their own archetype being featured and lightly made fun of. This got us curious about other examples of interesting branding and advertising that used illustration to an interesting effect, and here’s what we found.

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Illustrative Branding

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Illustrative Branding

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Illustrative Branding

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Illustrative Branding

Each of the above examples combines an strong element of wit with the sensation of individuality. Since everything is digital today (including these illustrations), the impression of something being handmade is differentiating and eye-catching.

In the case of StreetEasy and Casper, both of which demand some amount of user attention to put together the joke’s equation, the approach also suggests consumer willingness to do a certain amount of work engaging the material. Even the terribly wordy Manhattan Mini Storage ads of yore received significant attention for their stupidity, if not their intelligence.

So perhaps the growing trend is more than simply the proliferation illustration, but a covenant between brand and consumer to create and entertain more intelligent branding and advertising experiences – to begin engaging the mind in addition to the eyes. Anyway, that would be cool.

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