UPS and Poor Design

Over the past month or so, I have had to go to the UPS store for various reasons. During my time there, I always notice this new branding that they have started. Its design has always confused me from a typographic standpoint. In this example, your eye first goes to the white text. This brings emphasis to ‘ing’ rather than to the services offered by the UPS store. The color choice makes it difficult to read and interpret. The high contrast colors can work in some contexts, but it does not work here. The word-spacing also makes this much more difficult to read than it needs to be. By having the words so crowded, they form begin to form more of a blob rather than words. The letter-spacing looks very good, I’ll give them that. All of the letters seem to be evenly spaced, even if they are very close together. The color choice is another odd part. The UPS’s logo is brown and yellow. By imputing the hex colors into a color palette generator, I found that the triadic complementary color is a much deeper blue (shown below). The decision to pick a brighter blue makes this definitely a more eyecatching design, but it also somewhat hurts to look at since it is so bright. This along with the fact that it does not work well with their color scheme confuses me further. Overall, I am not a fan of this new branding and I am not sure what it is even supposed to be marketing.

Discussion — 3 Responses

  • Madeline Nocar 02/27/2020 on 10:04 PM

    I agree with what you said! Although I do like the layout of the poster in general, I think that the color really throws you off with legibility. I think that if the designer had changed the color of the services to white and all the “-ing”‘s to black, the entire meaning would be much more legible. I also don’t really like that awkward space where they have their logo and slogan, I think it might have looked better if it was centered and at the bottom of the poster, underneath all the other words. Nice post!

  • Cristian Pacheco 02/28/2020 on 2:30 PM

    I agree with you one hundred percent and also wondering what the marketing aspect may be behind this. Could the “ing” be representing a ringing tone because UPS usually rings your door? sounds corny but who knows. Not to mention that this sign gives me anxiety just from looking at it and that they did a poor job with the colors. The spacing is horrible and makes me want to backspace every single line to the left. The only important thing about this sign is the UPS logo, I’ll just ask an employee of theirs what services they offer before I read them off. Overall, I agree with everything you pointed out and more. Good job by picking this sign!

  • Katelyn Caruso 02/28/2020 on 6:00 PM

    When scrolling through photos on my dashboard, this image immediately caught my eye! Definitely not in a good way! I completely agree with you that the colors do not work. My eyes are immediately drawn to the white lettering so my brain was constantly going “-ing, -ing, -ing” which just led to confusion. I honestly get a headache looking at this poster, which is why I find it very humorous that the bottom of the advertisement says “business-carding.” I would definitely not want whoever designed this poster to go anywhere near my potential business cards. I enjoy the blue background if the wording was different colors, but even with that, the poster would not match the color scheme that UPS usually follows with the goldish yellow and brown. I wonder if there is possibly a reasoning behind the dramatic change in color scheme because I do not think the emblem looks good posted on top of that blue.

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