Simon & Schuster



Industry:Publishing, Literature, Media


Deliverables:Brand Strategy, Visual Identity, Experience Design


Description:A publishing institution with a century-long legacy, undergoes a strategic rebranding following the US government's intervention to thwart Penguin Random House's acquisition bid. This shift heralds a new era for the company, positioning it as a champion for underrepresented voices and diverse narratives. 

Simon & Schuster now serves as a beacon for small-scale and marginalized authors, reshaping the literary landscape by elevating unconventional forms of expression. This rebranding initiative encapsulates the company's commitment to fostering dialogue and inclusivity, envisioning a literary culture that transcends boundaries and embraces controversy as a catalyst for meaningful discourse.

Background



The global publishing landscape is primarily controlled by five major publishing conglomerates, boasting diverse imprints catering to various audiences and genres. Ranked by annual revenue in 2022, they are Penguin Random House, Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, and Simon & Schuster.


Founded in 1924 by Richard L. Simon and M. Lincoln Schuster, Simon & Schuster has since established itself as a prominent force in the publishing world. Producing approximately 2000 titles annually, the company is renowned for its diverse imprints and roster of notable authors.


Statistics & Insights


Strategy


Drawing from research and insights, a brand manifesto was crafted, highlighting the fresh set of values that epitomize Simon & Schuster's essence. These values position the brand as a bastion of independence, untethered from the sway of media influences. Central to this ethos is the elevation of emerging authors and a steadfast commitment to amplifying diverse perspectives. Transparency reigns supreme in the brand's editorial protocols and acquisition strategies. Additionally, the brand pledges dedicated efforts towards cultivating the future of publishing through mentorship programs, conferences, and industry opportunities.

Logomark




The redesigned logo design combines an ampersand symbol with an S. The ampersand represents unity, and reflects how Simon & Schuster brings together unique genres, authors, opinions, and media. The symbol is paired with the typeface, PP Editorial New, bringing the brand an elegant, classic, yet modern feel. The logo design can be used standalone, combined with the type, or surrounded by a circle, as a stamp mark. Paired with different author autographs, unique collaboration logo lockups are also used.

Guidelines


A comprehensive 65-page branding guidelines book consolidates essential information on brand values, personality, voice, history, taglines, copywriting, logo variations, color schemes, typography, grids, patterns, and practical use case examples. Its purpose is to facilitate a smooth transition of the new brand identity to both in-house designers and external designers who may be unfamiliar with Simon & Schuster's branding standards.

Print







Digital


The new brand identity thrives beyond print, with a digital experience that allows users to easily view and purchase books, with frequent events and promotions that highlight small and diverse authors. By having a more curated and refined browsing experience, Simon & Schuster can better compete with online marketplaces like Amazon.

Event



Brand Architecture




Simon & Schuster's brand structure encompasses three distinct publishing divisions: Adult, Children, and Audio. Within each division, there are over 50 imprints, each boasting its own distinct brand identity. By integrating the new Simon & Schuster wordmark alongside these established imprints, we facilitate their alignment under the overarching Simon & Schuster umbrella, while preserving the integrity of their individual logos.
Collaboration





In alignment with Simon & Schuster's renewed commitment to fostering diversity of expression and viewpoints, a collaborative marketing campaign was created in partnership with the American Library Association's Office for Intellectual Freedom. This initiative aims to spotlight historically banned and censored books, offering them at a discounted rate of 50%. Additionally, bespoke collaboration posters are crafted for each book release, harmonizing existing book branding with the overarching institutional identity.

Imprint


To showcase the versatility of the updated brand architecture, Simon & Schuster established a new imprint within its Children's Publishing division called Voyager. Specializing in a diverse range of books spanning kids and young adult fantasy genres, Voyager distinguishes itself with a vibrant, colorful palette and enchanting, fantastical illustrations, in contrast to the overarching institutional identity.





CreditsInstructor: Charles Lin
Typefaces: Pangram Pangram
Book Binding: ArtCenter College of Design Copy Center



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