Tag Archives: visual communication

Warby Parker: A Year In Pictures

Last post, we looked at Facebook’s investment in culturally-geared visual communication: a “secret” internal department charged with creating visually powerful cultural propaganda pieces. But will we see visual communication reach beyond internal messaging into the dry and conservative world of public-facing corporate communication?

Via a good friend of mine in the advertising industry, I came across this shining example of where we can only hope that we are headed:

Visually Stimulating Annual Report

Warby Parker 2013 Annual Report

This is Warby Parker’s 2013 Annual Report which takes corporate storytelling to new heights. Instead of the usual packet of mind-numbingly dense pages of text and numbers, Warby Parker chose to release a more human and relatable look back at 2013. The interactive calendar format contains anecdotal stories of corporate events, company milestones, fun cultural facts illustrated with informational design and, most importantly, lots and lots of  imagery.

This unique piece invites the public inside, giving us an intimate view of Warby Parker and its doings uncommon in the corporate world. Perhaps it’s an extension of the trend towards open and interactive communication that social media has fostered. Or perhaps it’s the continuation of the infographic trend: incorporating informational design into interest-peaking marketing pieces. Perhaps a little of both. Either way, we can hope to see more of these visually interesting and intimate pieces from the traditionally closed ranks of large companies. We’re all for it!

Head over to SlideRabbit.com to learn more about our informational design services. 


Facebook’s Analog Research Lab Embraces Visual Communication

High on our wish list is increased use of visual communication in the corporate sphere, both in internal and external messaging. We’ve previously discussed the engagement, persuasion and information retention benefits of visual communication, but even some of the more tech forward companies are woefully behind in harnessing the power of visual communication.

Just roll on over to Google’s Our Culture page to see what we mean. Sure, there are some photos of Googlers at work or in their home cities, OK. So we see you are global and there are real humans in your offices, just like any other international company. But what makes you tick? What is your collective passion? Who ARE you, Google?

Taking a different, more exciting approach is our other internet overlord, Facebook. Facebook quietly houses an old-school propaganda department that designs and produces culture-focused posters, banners and pamphlets. The pieces produced by the Analog Research Lab are geared toward employees and communicate the Facebook culture and vision with lots of imagery and very few words. We recently got our hands on an internal piece produced by the lab.

Here are some images from the booklet:

Of course, we’re comparing internal to external messaging here, but based on recent Google leaks, it seems that their internal communication is also falling short in the visual arena.

Whether the idea of internal propaganda gives you the heebie-jeebies or not, Facebook’s use of visual communication is inspiring. We hope more companies follow suit in both their internal communications and their external positioning.

Check out our Corporate Communications page for some suggestions on incorporating visuals into your corporate messaging. 

Infographic: The Importance Of Visual Communication

Infographics are gaining in popularity and is it any wonder why? Great for generating brand or message awareness, these share-worthy marketing pieces catch the eye and engage the audience. As our attention spans get shorter, infographics chunk information into bite size pieces perfect for quick consumption of main concepts. Check out our infographic on why visual communication has become so important to getting your message across:


Make Your Slides Striking: The Rule of Thirds

Rule of Thirds | Slide CompositionGreat presentation design is a balance between art and science. Too often in the rush to fill the screen with facts and figures, we forget to view the slide for what it is, a blank canvas.

Since the time of the Renaissance, artists have experimented with ways to make their works more visually striking. Fundamental compositional design is just as important to great slides as the information that fills the screen. Taking composition into consideration during the design process produces more sophisticated, fresh slides.

The Rule of Thirds is a compositional rule of thumb for creating visual images. It was first named by John Thomas Smith in 1797, but can be spotted at work in paintings dating from the Renaissance and likely beyond. Using the rule of thirds increases the tension and visual interest of the slide, and helps create and balance negative space.

To use the rule of thirds, imagine the slide as divided by two lines, both horizontally and vertically. The 9 section grid creates guideposts against which to align areas of high contrast, negative space and “sections” of information.

Take for example, this simple slide on the soccer basics. This is a fairly typical slide and not all that terrible. The creator has included a visual element, paired down the text and used theme-appropriate graphic bullets. The composition lacks some finesse though – the picture on the right is crushed against the side of the slide and the text area is large and sparsly filled. The result is a visual imbalance that gives the eye no place to rest.

Rule of Thirds | Slide Composition

Apply the rule of thirds to elevate the sophistication of this slide to the next level. In the second example, the proportions of the slide fit the rule of thirds, creating negative space and a more visually interesting slide. The soccer ball now sits in its own grid section and the shadow of the goal line falls directly on the top bisecting line, creating a “horizon” with the top of the title. The text area of the slide feels more purposeful and cohesive when set against the negative space above.

Rule of Thirds | Slide Compostion

Great slide design is about much more than sharp graphics, carefully selected text and persuasive data. Think of slides as little works of art; basic compositional principles can be employed to make a good visual aid more striking and memorable.