Bennet Schwartz – 7 Design Trends For 2021


The response to the pandemic of 2020 in the marketing sector has been to bring more minimalism and muted color palettes to the table. The marketing sector is seeing evolution as the bold colors of 2019 are replaced by natural shades. The rebranding efforts that have gotten underway in 2021 are removing some of the frivolity that has been in place throughout the last decade.

The Design Council reports creating a brand means bringing together a group of disparate elements and creating a recognizable product across multiple platforms. Bennet Schwartz points to the decision by the Columbus Crew Soccer team to rebrand as Columbus SC as a sign of the change in the attitude of brands to their image.

1. Minimalism

For more than a decade, the success of rebranding efforts has included a range of efforts to make each logo and aspect of a brand as minimalistic as possible. Minimalism has become a byword for stripping back all the excess of a logo or branding. A good example of the switch to minimalism is the rebranding of the Columbus Crew logo and jersey designs, which have stripped back the blue-collar aspects of the design. Bennet Schwartz points to the company with the leading brand recognition in the world, Apple, as an example of how to create a minimalist logo correctly.

2. Muted Colors

At the height of the return to a 1980s aesthetic, bright neon colors were the norm for marketing executives and designers. In response to the pandemic and the difficult times we face, designers have switched to a natural color palette. Medium reports the choice of colors has not changed excessively, but the sharpness of the shade has been toned down. Alongside minimalism, muted colors will last beyond the end of the year and into 2022.

3. Asymmetry

The use of grids has been one of the leading changes in the marketing industry over the last year. As the amount of information each brand has to get across has increased, the way information is presented has changed. Asymmetry brings straight lines and grid systems to the marketing sector has become a growing trend. The increase in minimalism has been seen in the amount of white space featured on the web presence of most brands. Keeping the amount of information being viewed as minimal as possible has led to new design options being explored by designers and their clients.

4. Text in Video

Video has been difficult to complete in 2020 and early in 2021 because of social distancing rules. Video producers and designers are looking to include more text to get their point across effectively and efficiently. Despite the move towards vaccinations reaching most of the U.S., the use of text in the video will remain important throughout 2021. Recording video can be a difficult thing to do in the midst of a pandemic, with voiceover and text increasingly important to designers.

5. Data Visualization

Comparing and contrasting products and services is one of the most popular forms of marketing in 2021. However, the ability to concisely present data without overwhelming an audience is an art form. Data visualization is a way of removing the difficulties of understanding statistics, with simplicity the keyword of this design trend. Brands are looking to maintain their neutral color palette to keep their information as easy to understand as possible. The use of charts with large numbers to push a point home for the consumer is part and parcel of the use of data visualization.

6. Diversity

The diverse nature of the communities we live in has not always been represented in the design sector. A natural approach to diversity is one of the most important aspects of the latest trends in design and marketing. Bennet Schwartz believes the marketing and design sector needs to present an accurate reflection of the communities we live in. The effective use of diverse models and brand ambassadors is part of a push to make the media more representative of the world around us.

7. Serif Fonts

At a time of great uncertainty in society, we are looking for the warmth and support of classic fonts in design. The most popular options for classic fonts include serif, which has seen a resurgence in the last few months. In the latest design trends, the shift has taken place to nostalgic fonts evoking a period of happiness and certainty. As communities continue to struggle with the losses caused by COVID-19, the use of nostalgic fonts and imagery is designed to soothe worried minds.

Final Thoughts

The pandemic has changed the approach to effective design taking place around the world. Presenting information concisely and efficiently has become the most important aspect of marketing and design, with data visualization bringing information to the viewer concisely. The muted colors and minimalism of current design trends will likely remain in place through 2022 as the recovery from the pandemic picks up pace.