The makers of Vodpod, a leading web-based social video service, approached Moving Brands to create the brand for their latest app concept, Showyou. Believing that the way we search for video content needs to evolve into a more social and immersive experience, Showyou gives people the fun of serendipitously discovering and sharing new videos via their social graph.
Moving Brands approached the engagement by considering user experience and identity as one and the same. From the brand identity and the logo to the user-interface design and iconography, every aspect of the Showyou brand has been crafted to express the concept of ‘showing.’
“In Moving Brands we found a fantastic creative partner for this project. The team at MB pushed us in directions we might not have explored on our own, and helped us to think in a more comprehensive way about how to marry the Showyou identity with the UI itself, and to make something at once distinctive, yet very usable and coherent. We’re thrilled with the resulting work that our collaboration with Moving Brands produced.”
Mark Hall, CEO of Remixation
At the core of the Showyou brand strategy lies a fundamental understanding of its user-base – Digital Natives and Millennials whose use of social networks is part of the fabric of their lives. They express themselves through who they link to and the content they share, and are doing this instinctively.
We observed successful sharing becoming a form of social currency for this group. Therefore, we knew that the Showyou app needed to be informed by this innate behavior in the way it looked, felt and interacted.
To achieve this, the identity and the user experience was built from four clearly defined design behaviors; ‘Kinetic’, ‘Reactive’, ‘Connected’ and ‘Framework’. These behaviors give the brand energy and structure, and act as a concise reference point throughout the design process. They work alongside the core story of visual perception – how the eye and camera input information, and how a projector outputs information. Everything from the name, the communications, and the identity – an abstracted eye sharing what it sees – are grounded in the act of showing.
Our extensive competitor audit revealed key branding opportunities; the Showyou brand would move away from the aesthetic currently associated with app interface and chiclet design, of using shine and reflection to suggest a fake 3D feel. Showyou would have an intentionally 2D feel, embrace the video grid and use strong color and bold iconography to create cut-though with the user and differentiate itself in the App Store.
The Showyou graphic language is a vibrant expression of simple shapes. The Showyou colour palette is based on the RGB color model, in which red, green, and blue light is added together to produce color. We used the sans serif font family Futura for all text to appear in the App. The font helps convey the unique geometric style, in a clear and consistent manner. The wordmark was customized from the typeface Neutra to reflect the symmetry of the symbol.
We also created a unique set of icons to be used in the UI design for navigation. The style of the iconography follows the same structures and simplicity used in the Showyou symbol. From icons for ‘thanks’ to ‘show’, these geometric icons are all easy to understand and playful.
The resulting Showyou App perfectly marries identity with user interface and moves beyond the normal app-aesthetic – creating a unique and memorable experience.
The brand identity system consisted of a full set of digital deliverables. All elements of the system were distinctively flat, in line with the 2D chiclet. We created extensive design templates for the Showyou UI, which included the grid interface, feed page, navigation bar, video window, user profile, background loading tile, notifications pop-up, and sign-in module.
We created the start-up and video-loading animations, taking into consideration the different orientations of the iPad, we created 4 versions: 4:3 landscape, 4:3 portrait, square for when the device is turned mid-animation, and the original 16:9 widescreen version.
Believing that Showyou would become a state of mind, not just another app on the App Store, we also designed tees and hoods, not forgetting cases for the iPhone and iPad.