Rules were made to be broken

When I began in this business, it quickly became clear that there are fundamental rules in graphic design. Things like, certain fonts should not be combined, don’t use too many fonts, conservative businesses use conservative colours, make good use of white space, and certain colours NEVER go together…

Well, just as quickly it became clear that the way your business gets attention is by sometimes breaking those rules—or at least bending them. Who would have thought that a bank, the epitome of conservative business, could successfully use lots of bright orange combined with royal blue—that combination would be thought of as a no-no for corporate colours! (I’m sure you know who I mean.) They broke the rules to show that they are an unconventional bank—not to mention referencing their European heritage.

Or what about the Canadian grocery chain that created a North American marketing phenomenon with their advertising supplement which crammed way too much into a comic book-style booklet to promote their new products from an “Insider’s” perspective? That campaign has been flourishing for 20 years, though it has evolved and it’s a little less intense these days.

The key to this approach? Knowing which rules to break, when and how. Even when the rules have been broken, you want something that is professional, attention-getting and reflects your business mission and style.

As they say, don’t try this at home. Leave it to a professional to understand the rules and how to break them effectively.

Would it work for you to break a few rules? It might be just the ticket to get your business noticed.

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