Maria 👋🏽

Medium Rebrand

Brand Marketing Lead: Leah Clark
Creative direction and design: Maria Gonzalez
Agency: Manual Creative
The challenge
The previous logo launched in 2015 felt too digital and complex — it was difficult to adapt into many contexts, and was a little cryptic for first-time viewers. Medium also lacked brand guidelines, attributes and principles that could be used across all marketing materials and in product.
The value proposition
Medium is the only open platform built for ideas that are worth your time, every time. It stands for a better type of exchange, one where smart voices take center stage and the best ideas get the attention they deserve.
Target audience
The world’s curious minds come to Medium. They read and talk with purpose, and love nothing more than getting to the heart of the matter.
Create a mark that would reference the tradition of print publishing but also feel timeless and fresh in the digital context.
My role
Provide feedback and direction to Manual who was responsible for leading our exploration of various logos, monograms, and typefaces for word marks.

Together we co-created photography, illustration and brand guidelines. I then took those guidelines and designed emails, landing pages, and in-product branded moments in collaboration with the product design team.
Brand elements developed

More emphasis on readability and in the service of creating visual interest.

Use layering, transparency, and overlapping to create a sense of movement to allude to the notion of a network of ideas.

More colorful, yet subdued. Alludes to print through muted background colors. Not overly vibrant so users’ content can stand out.

Draw focus to the diverse and unique voices on Medium. Aim to show people in varying states of engagement.

Landing pages
Pages I designed for readers, creators and subscribers.
For logged in users the pages were personalized showing content that was relevant to them based on topics or authors they followed.
Illustration Art Direction
Series of illustrations I art directed or designed myself for landing pages, emails, and in product branding opportunities.

Illustrators: Natalie Nelson and Nate Kitch

Examples of brand moments in the product

We passionately support unique voices and are respectful of the diverse perspectives they provide. So we let them shine and embrace the serendipity that they create. (Respectful, Diverse, Passionate)

This manifests most strongly through: Content

We question the status quo and don’t simply follow the trend. We strive to create experiences that are refreshing and delightful.  (Timeless, Purpose-driven, Refreshing, Delightful, Unique)

This manifests most strongly through: Design

We are intentional and straightforward but never loud or flashy. We always design consistent and reliable experiences for our users. (Understated, Crisp, Succinct, Reliable, Consistent, Intentional, Helpful)

This manifests most strongly through: Voice & Design

We are thoughtful yet quick on our feet. What we build and what we say always has purpose and never gets in the way.  (Useful, Clean, Knowledgeable, Thoughtful)

This manifests most strongly through: Voice & Content

Brand attributes
These were written by Leah Clark. Together we led brainstorms with the leadership team at Medium to arrive at these principles.