Creating a mascot that fits your business
How to get closer to your target audience? How to make your business closer and more down to earth for everyone? It takes a lot of money and marketing brains. But how about ChallengeSoft article made up of experienced UI/UX Designer and Illustrator that have the idea for you to think about? Mascot. Let’s see how it works for business!
Mascot and its Goals
What should the mascot do for your company:
Establish user contact with the brand or company.
A brand character make your brand more recognizable. It is easy to make contact with a branded character, it is interesting to watch him on social networks. It creates a positive image of the company.
Awakens the desire to buy a product or service.
Some companies would like to attract a family audience and interest children with a positive character. This will help mascot.
Create customer loyalty.
Loyal customers do not easily switch to another brand due to the lower price. They would rather pay more to get the expected quality of the product they know and love. Such an emotional attachment to the company will help get a brand character.
Makes difficult maintenance easier.
Your corporate character will easily tell your clients how to use the product or the services. He’s humorous and easily explains serious things to your customers.
Allow you to implement a first-person sales strategy.
Mascot gives the opportunity to talk about the product in person, this inspires consumer confidence.
Starting from your goals, you can move on to creating a corporate character.
Types of Mascots
Depending on the type of visualization, the mascots are divided into such groups:
Also distinguish by nature:
Any mascot can be animated, used in commercials, social networks, participate in various events.
For our brand, ChallengeSoft chose an animalistic character. This type of character is most often used in design. We picked up a cute and friendly character. He is cool, funny and always on the couch. He lives the life of a programmer: this guy also overtime and works at night, at the same time he knows how to have fun and enjoy life. The character has many images, because he lives and develops with the brand. It visually expresses and reinforces the brand’s mission, is perfectly integrated into the corporate identity system. We used our signature colors (gray color of the style and orange for emphasis).
Examples of Successful Mascots
One of the most recognizable characters is the clown Ronald McDonald. The first McDonald’s restaurant was opened in 1940. However, it gained recognition and popularity only when Ronald’s clown began to be used as a talisman.
In 1940 Forrest Mars invented M&M’s dragées. There were ups and downs. But the real success came after rebranding. Susan Cradle embodied effective and simple idea of reviving dragées. From this moment on, M&M’s came true success and recognition.
Before creating our mascot, we carefully analyzed the brand characters of large companies, their success stories. We have created a successful character who participates in various events, promotes our brand in social networks. Users are happy to use our stickers in Telegram and Viber.
Design of Mascot Step by Step
It could be the same for every business. In another way, it would be the lack of uniqueness, reductive, and just not interesting. That’s why it’s important to do more than just draw some sketches. Designers do a lot of work before designing itself! This long project is for one thing – the key to the great marketing decision. Now let’s understand how this key to the success of any company is creating.
Analyzing of Company and its Style
Analyze your company by the following criteria:
level of company presentation, its style, image;
how much he works in the market, what niche he occupies, what achievements he has;
spectrum of services or range of goods that the company offers unique in contrast to others;
features, methods of stimulating the growth of customer loyalty;
advertising campaigns, promotion of the company and products / services;
strengths of the firm;
All this will provide an opportunity to determine your place in the market, what niche you occupy, the direction in which you are moving, to develop further action strategies.
In this way you will be able to position yourself in the market and develop a strategy of action.
Colors and Why it’s Important
In competitive markets today, brand awareness plays an extremely important role in attracting consumer attention.
When choosing a color, you need to follow a few key rules:
Colors should correspond to the target audience of the company, product. It will be quite strange if you make ecological products, to choose red or yellow color for the mascot. What associations will it evoke in your consumer? At first, it will not be associated with your company and you will lose brand awareness. Secondly, it will cause the wrong emotions in your customers, and will not inspire confidence.
Must be associated with the company and the product offered to the consumer. For example, if you have a football team, you should not choose green for your mascot, because it is not associated with victories, and blue will be a bad choice, because it is the color of calm. In this case, it is better to choose red, because it will emphasize determination victory.
Do not “overdo it” with the number of colors. If you have, for example, a serious company, and to create a mascot, you decide to use all the colors you like. In this case, you will lose your solidity. It is better to use one or two colors (usually the colors of the brand), and a few pastel colors to support the composition.
We vibrated to create our signature colors: it is gray and orange. What do they symbolize? We have already condemned the orange, this positive color evokes good emotions among customers, uplifting and disposing. It is neutral in itself, has a subtle beauty, especially when combined with bright colors. Gray is the color of intelligence, it relaxes, helps to feel calm. It is universal and conservative; it can be used in almost any field of activity to create conciseness and refinement. This color indicates that we are success and prosperity, we are confident, reliable and stable, but at the same time full of energy for new challenges. Let’s discuss gray: it symbolizes formality, professionalism. We softened the officially of this color with the softness of the character, because he is so cute.
But the subconscious message that we are professionals is still present.
The Sketch Stage
If you have analyzed your strategy, your advertising campaign, selected a character, and considered how your mascot interacts with the product, you can proceed to direct creation. At this point, you need to consider the mascot history, character, and behavior. The next step is to consider its external characteristics. A very important stage in the sketch stage is movement and dynamics. Think about how your character will move, whether he can participate in events, interact with the product, react to the product.
How to create a successful character
It is best, to begin with, simple shapes. So do the sculptors: a simple skeleton is increasing. This method will help you find the right angle and shape. Ask any designer or artist is the greatest mistake from the beginning to admire the details. So, start with simple shapes.
When developing a brand character, do not concentrate on a specific image. Try to create some options to make it easier to choose the most successful.
One of my teachers said that if you imagined something – draw it. When we begin to realize our idea may be that it’s not as successful as we thought. Often it also happens that the most incredible idea seems the best. It can also happen that you like some item from one character and the other from the second. So variability helps to hit the target more precisely.
When creating a branded character be aware of the proportions of the parts of the body. This technique is often used by animators. When you look at the character, you immediately understand his character according to the proportions of his body.
For example, a brave strong-willed person has a protruding chin, broad shoulders, elongated lower body. Nice friendly hero proportions will be close to the child: big eyes almost the entire face, small mouth, and nose. A nerd will have a big head and thin arms, usually he would be with glasses. The comic hero is small in stature. This technique will help consumers to correctly perceive your character.
Please pay special attention to the silhouette of your character. It should easily be guessed. Make a little experiment: paint your character in black color. Can the silhouette to identify the mascot and to distinguish it from the others. For efficiency, do the same with famous characters. Even in this form, you can easily find out the Nesquik Bunny, Duracell rabbit, Mickey Mouse.
At this stage, when you took into account all the previous factors, pay attention to the details. Unusual interesting items to help your mascot stand out. For example, according to statistics, Ronald, a McDonald’s brand persona, is one of the most recognizable characters of American students. Clearly thought-out details (striped T-shirt, yellow overalls with the restaurant logo, a characteristic wig) distinguish it from other clowns. What sets it apart from the other clowns? Details.