There is an overabundance of factors that need attention at the infancy of your business. What name will I choose? What should my website look like? How can I spread the word about my brand?
Add about 1,000 more questions to the list, and the train barely starts to move. But one of the most critical factors of your business is your presentation, specifically, which type of font you choose for your logos, website, and more. Let’s go over why fonts can make or break a business and the four main typeface categories.
Colors elicit emotion and have a powerful effect on how a brand is perceived–but so do typefaces (a font is actually the size and weight of lettering, but we’ll use these two words interchangeably through this article to avoid confusion). Small variations in lettering design can turn the mood from playful to serious, or from glitzy to reliable. And because you want to attract the right type of customer for your brand, you’ll want to make sure that you choose the perfect font that not just accurately represents the spirit of your business, but also stimulates the desired reaction from potential clients.
The Four Font Categories
Typefaces generally fall into one of four categories–serif, sans serif, script, and display. Each category contains hundreds of fonts, and each style can unlock particular emotions.
Serif fonts are traditional, classic designs full of detail and decorative arcing “feet” that project off the end of letters. They’re a formal approach to typeface and are a top choice for print, but are found in fashion, academia, finance, technology, and just about every other industry. Essentially, it’s all about your attitude–if you want to portray your business as authoritative and respectable, explore serif’s road of long-established typefaces.
WHAT THEY SAY
Times New Roman
Sans serif quite literally means no serifs or the absence of little “feet.” While these fonts shed intricacies and ornate design elements, they are in themselves a highly stylistic approach to font–in a simplistic and modern form. Brands that choose serifs may be forward-thinking, even futuristic. The letters are easy to read, and customers appreciate the clean, no-fuss, distraction-free appearance.
WHAT THEY SAY
A script font is designed to add elegance, personality, and flair to a brand and mimics natural writing. They’re essentially based on the oldest kind of typeface–handwriting. And while you may think that this style is rather scant among brands, think again–companies like Ford, Instagram, and Coca Cola opted for script font. But remember that numerous script fonts can be challenging to read, so be especially selective when choosing them for your logo.
WHAT THEY SAY
Display or decorative fonts are candid fonts that are as versatile as they are fun. Display fonts are the number one choice for logos, as they are extremely unique and help to set brands apart from the competition. While they can highlight a brand’s personality, it’s hard to pick the right one that draws the correct response from your customer, because some display fonts can be playful while others are dramatic and piercing.
Even though generalizations cover a lot of ground, some rules are meant to be broken. A certain serif may feel a tad playful and informal, while particular sans serifs may give off too much grandeur for your casual brand. Take a good look at many, many fonts, and then look at more.
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