In a recent discussion on LinkedIn, someone said that Project BBCG is a good system, but only for tech-savvy designers. While I agree with the first part, I strongly disagree with the second: it’s even the opposite! Plus, the tech-savvy part – which only has to happen once – offers printers and prepress houses opportunities. They have the expertise to make the lives of designers easier and brand color reproduction more predictable, in a straightforward way… Join the growing Project BBCG movement!
Creating Better Brand Color Guides
Project BBCG, and every brand color guide BTW, has two parts. The first is building that brand color guide, and the second is using the instructions in the guide to create documents and print jobs containing that brand color. The first part might indeed be a bit tech-savvy. In the case of a Better Brand Color Guide, you need to know how to make a color measurement and how to create a better transformation to a specific CMYK profile. Plus other elements that might have an important influence on color reproduction (e.g., the use of coatings or special paper types).
This is BTW where it often goes wrong: people without sufficient, without the proper knowledge creating brand color guides that are flawed by design. That’s why we created Project BBCG – A Better Brand Color Guide, and the tutorial to explain color, color identification, and color reproduction.
And here are the opportunities for printers and prepress houses: assist designers and brand owners in creating rock-solid brand color guides, in building Better Brand Color Guides! And this is nothing new, some companies have done this already for a long time. E.g. my friend Gary Courtney, Technical GC and Training at DagwoodLinnetts, a company that specializes in quality print, mock-ups and prototypes for the advertising, design and packaging industries: “Project BBCG brings together important technologies and best practices which we have advocated for years, along with some additional rock-solid approaches to brand colour standards all in one clever package.”
Using Better Brand Color Guides
In a perfect world, where all brand owners have created a Better Brand Color Guide and the associated tools (ASE files), a designer’s job will not be very different from their current workflow. It might even be slightly more straightforward, and less error-prone. When brand owners make their brand color definitions available as ASE files, one of the basic components of the Project BBCG approach, designers only need to import those ASE files into their Adobe CC applications, or other applications that support ASE files. When done, the brand colors will show as a new color library, including all colors in the ASE file. Look at the different colors in the ‘insights4print’ library!
In the old workflow, designers will probably have to search for a specific color in a specific generic color library, e.g., a Pantone number in one of the Pantone libraries. This can be more complicated than it seems: you need to pick the correct library (especially if you still have the old ones in your system…), and search for the right color. In my insights4print library, you only have to pick the right color (e.g., orange), for the proper use (spot color). Easy, isn’t it?
Why is this important?
Every change is difficult, change management is often the reason why innovations fail. But changing from the old, flawed use of brand colors to the Project BBCG approach is not that difficult. Once you have tested it, it will become apparent that it’s an improvement! Import the insights4print ASE file and check it out!
Defining that Better Brand Color Guide might require a bit more attention. But current practices deliver flawed brand color guides, which can lead to a lot of issues later on, even with every print production. Printers and prepress houses should grab this opportunity and help designers and brand owners to create Better Brand Color Guides. It is not only a business opportunity, it will also eliminate issues when reproducing that precious brand color. Talk about Project BBCG to customers! Especially with those customers you had issues with reproducing their brand colors. You can download a presentation for free!
And don’t forget: the Project BBCG framework is based on tools you already have, no extra licenses needed!
PS: the Project BBCG tutorial is available in the following languages (in alfabetical order of the language codes):
- Deutsch (German) – translation by Claas Bickeböller (MYIRO – Konica Minolta Sensing Europe)
- Español (Spanish) – translation by Ferran Peñalver (Litografía Rosés)
- Français (French) – translation by Anthony Martin (MYIRO – Konica Minolta Sensing Europe)
- Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian) – translation by Clara Averina (Mega Putra)
- Italiano (Italian) – translation by Denis Salicetti and Manuel Trevisan, in collaboration with COMUNICO ITALIANO.
- Nederlands (Dutch)
- Português – Portugal (Portuguese – Portugal) – translation by Vítor Pedro
- Português – Brasil (Portuguese – Brazil) – adaptation by Bruno Mortara
- Svensk (Swedish) – translation by Lukas Engqvist (Brobygrafiska)
- Türkçe versiyon (Turkish) – translation by prof. dr. Bilge Altay (RIT)
- 中文 (Chinese – Simplified) – translation by Petros from WeChat channel ‘Printingnews’
- Chinese – Traditional – translation by Fred Hsu (Idealliance Taiwan)
Is your native language not listed yet and do you want to volunteer for the translation? Please get in touch!