Minimalism is an ideology that has become a trend recently and has influenced many industries and even artistic mediums. Minimalism can be explained in one sentence as believing that less is more. According to minimalism, many details in a phenomenon are unnecessary, and by removing them, you can be free and peaceful.
Minimalism in literature can be explored through writers such as Ernest Hemingway and Raymond Carver, who avoided complex literature and told their stories to their audiences in the most concise way possible. This is the reason why these authors are known as the greatest writers of world literature.
We can best illustrate minimalism in branding through the design of Apple’s products, which is the reason this brand has users who refuse to use other brands’ products. Due to Apple’s minimal mindset, customers are unable to use other tools without feeling confused or complicated, and for this reason (along with luxury Apple products, etc.) they are dependent on the brand.
In addition, as with anything else, minimalism can be taken to extremes and instead of making your brand stand out, it may send it to the graveyard of forgotten brands.
Our goal in this article is to determine whether minimalism is always the best option or not. What does minimalism mean? Is it to take everything to the extreme, removing every detail, and settling for nothing more than the bare essentials?
Is minimalism always the best choice?
Minimalism can be seen in many of the products we use today. Many brands try to convey the message with the least possible details, and many of them fail, but few do something to stand out by implementing this ideology properly. How do some brands succeed and some fail? What causes this distinction?
If and only if minimalism is used in a principled and correct way, we believe it can be a powerful brand-enhancing tool. In its branding services, Shahrtash Studio follows the principle of minimalism. Nevertheless, we are aware of what needs to be removed, as well as what details are indispensable to your brand. We will discuss further how distractions from this issue can threaten your brand with serious risks.
Extreme minimalism: what are the dangers?
As we discussed above, going too far with minimalism can lead to failure in the market. As minimalism is about removing details, removing some details will at best leave your brand DNA incomplete, and at worst prevent it from forming.
These risks can be categorized into four categories:
1- Lack of personality
No matter how we view the brand, whether as a piece of art or as a dynamic and living entity, the details are crucial. Extreme minimalism tends to lose details, which is what destroys brand identity. Due to the diversity of brands and products, customers have many options. If a customer decides to use your brand for whatever reason, whether it is advertising or random events, if your brand doesn’t have a clear personality, they will quickly forget about you. The customer may return to you, but only by chance. Create a brand personality that will stay with your audience for a long time.
2- Lack of differentiation
Branding is the art of differentiation, and differentiation begins with the details. By eliminating the details that set you apart from your competitors, extreme minimalism will make your business disappear among your competitors and the user will have trouble remembering your brand.
Every time you have visited different organizations and businesses, you may have felt that something is missing in their visual identity. By signing an unwritten contract, business managers are becoming part of something that is, say, modern. These managers have fallen into the trap of extreme minimalism and have forgotten that they have neglected details so much that they are practically no different from other brands. Take a look at the logos, corporate colors, product packaging, office papers, etc. to realize how similar they are. Your memory can also tell you how many brands you’ve encountered recently that are still fresh in your mind. The number is probably very, very small, and we will see an extreme minimalism effect if we examine those brands closely.
The same applies to sonic identity. What business do you remember where you felt that you encountered something unique when you heard the sound of music waiting on the phone, the sound of music inside the business, or even the sound effects of different parts of their business? The answer to this question is probably very, very little. The use of minimalism has made the work so similar that it is impossible to distinguish between the two brands.
3- Lack of emotional connection
Through connecting with people, brands find meaning. Successful brands communicate with their customers on an emotional and subconscious level. The absence of details makes human communication impossible, and for this reason, brands that fail to provide details also fail in this communication and cannot present themselves properly.
A brand that understands human concerns and can interact with people humanly is more likely to be trusted. You should always be careful if you approach minimalism with an emotionless approach so that you do not appear as a soulless machine to the audience, which only cares about money and does not understand anything else.
A properly applied use of minimalism and a specialized look at it in your brand strategy can enable you to conjure up a corner of the audience’s mind for you and your brand without creating additional noise.
4- Inability to Communicate Complex Ideas
Many brands need to convey complex messages to their audience. As an example, suppose your brand is meant to connect with people who are under pressure in society. Due to the conditions, they have to endure, this brand’s audience needs more than just the simple message, “We care about you”. You can’t convey these messages to your audience when you practice extreme minimalism.
When minimalism is implemented correctly and according to principle, it conveys to the audience that you aren’t going to enter their life extremely and try to change everything at once. Rather, you are going to make their life better as much as you can calmly and logically. Choosing the right words in the right way to convey these words to the audience can only be accomplished by having a precise verbal identity.
Nowhere in the above article does Shahrtash Studio mention its opposition to minimalism. The brands we create with our magic and even our own brand at Shahrtash Studio, and even our own brand at Shahrtash Studio, all pursue minimalism. The presence of things that have correctly applied minimalism in today’s busy world is like a piece of calm music in the hustle and bustle and makes the world more beautiful. Nevertheless, we are aware that removing details from this music should not result in a meaningless, vague sound that is not heard by anyone and will not change the listener’s life.
Check out Shahrtash Studio’s magic method page if you want to know how we do magic using minimalism.