Eugene Cho

banner presence feedback

We’re in the process of redesigning a new banner for the Q Cafe for the huge side wall of the Warehouse and we need your feedback about the designs below!  We’re very excited about the initial responses we’ve been getting from folks to the changes in the cafe but after five years, there are many who still don’t quite know who we are.  Here’s an example of what I’m talking about:

We both wondered what the Q was when it first showed up. It didn’t look like a regular cafe. Was it part of a church? Would we be beset by evangelists if we dared to stop in for coffee? Was it a place to stop in for coffee, or was it something else? Was it like a VFW hall, a gathering place for a specific group of people that happened to serve beer (coffee)? Its warehouse size was cuing that it was something other than a cafe. Whatever it was, neither of us felt compelled to stop and check it out. A place needs to be clear about what it is to inspire “triers”.

Thinking about what it is, what do you say it is? There should be a one-sentence answer.

So, here are are our possible banners thanks to the work of Angela and Hage Creative Design with our simple one sentence answer.  Note that the sizes of the banners will be 180 x 40 = huge. 

qcafe1.jpg

qcafe2.jpg

qcafe3.jpg

Questions: 

  1. What do you think about the sentence description?  Is it simple but clear enough?
  2. What do you think about the general banner design?  What changes would you propose?  Which of those 3 would you choose?  [Note:  the exterior cafe/warehouse color is blue]

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18 Responses

  1. Phil says:

    I think it is great. I like #3 the best, the black brings it out. I think it is simple and shows the community aspect, people are looking for community.

  2. Aaron says:

    Looks good…
    What about #3, with the color around the “Q” from #1?

  3. BK says:

    The short description is perfect. Straight to the point but still conveys the uniqueness of Q Cafe. Of the designs, #3 gets my vote.

  4. 1) it is simple and good
    2) i like #2 more because #3’s black saucer/plate under the cup takes away from the light orange which brings out the Q, #1 is nice but lacks the oomph of #2.

  5. Randall says:

    I think adding “free trade” to Espresso and Tea would say a lot about the values of the cafe.

    And I like #3.

  6. jpkang says:

    My comments are about the byline on the right. To paraphrase emperor Joseph in Amadeus, “there are simply too many notes words!”

    Taking into consideration the sunlight/shadows during the day, I’d choose dark lettering for maximal legibility (black or maybe a blue to match the exterior). Also, “café” is already prominent in the name, so I wonder if you need to repeat it or even the word “neighborhood.” And what café doesn’t serve espresso and tea?

    So, my suggestion:

    Q Café | Featuring Art, Live Music, and Community Events

  7. Jennifer says:

    I like 2 or 3. I thin the orange would really pop agianst the blue building.

    The sentence is good….as long as the text will be big enough for people to read as they drive past.

  8. I’m with JPKang in that I think it has far too many words. The left of the banner already tells the reader that it’s a cafe so there’s no need to say that again. I think the verbiage as it stands is good for a mission statement but a banner would do better with JPKang’s byline or even a little simpler:

    left side:
    Q Cafe (logo)
    right side first line:
    Community Espresso and Tea
    right side second line:
    with Art and Live Music

  9. Andrea says:

    I vote for leaving off the first line. I also think darker lettering is better than white, which can be difficult to read sometimes. Are you going to have Stumptown somewhere on the outside of the building as well? You might add that…

  10. leochen says:

    I vote for keeping it really simple too. Catchy and to the point… Big huge bold words like

    “Arts, Music, Event Rental”

    Then in a different font, perhaps some kind of hand-writing font to give it a punctuated feel and says “Caffeinated”

    or something like that

  11. m@ says:

    I can’t really tell what that watermarked thing is under the Q…

    Anyway, I agree with a couple of points here. Less words, emphasize fair trade (attracts a new market segment), maybe add something that confirms you as the “anti-Starbucks” (a little competition never hurt anyone!)

  12. queltica says:

    I like #3, with black lettering:

    Q Cafe –
    Fair Trade Coffee and Tea
    Art, Live Music, Community Events

  13. djchuang says:

    I like #2 the most, like warjian commented.. with any sign, whether smallish or huge, contrast is important, and fewer words is important. The slogan has way too many words; if you can reduce it down to 5 words or less, that’d be much easier to scan read when driving by, and boils down (pun intended) the message to its essence, cf. the Verizon billboard with one big word, “RELIABLE.”

    one idea: try to put a faint horizontal line on the right half of the banner, to split up the 2 line slogan, or, 2 horizontal bars with white on orange + black on grey (play around with color schemes, see if this concept can work), and on the top bar, put “fair trade coffee, espresso, & tea”, on the bottom bar, put “art, live music & events for the neighborhood”

  14. Blake says:

    I like #3, but I’m with M@… I couldn’t initially tell that the swirl beneath the Q was a coffee mug.

    Though I do think that the banner has lots of words, I think it is the best way to communicate what the cafe is… a community cafe.

    It might be cool to throw the Stumptown coffee logo up somewhere on the outside too.

  15. Blake says:

    Oh yeah, I think djchuang may have hit the sweet spot… potentially substituting “fair traide” with “direct trade.”

  16. JB says:

    you’ve gotten some good feedback here: short and readable. The reversed out white letters look cool but are hard to read. A tag line that embodies the spirit of the place would be great. Can any of the creative minds here come up with one?

    It’d be cool if the idea of conversation could be incorporated too. The idea that you can interact with people here.

    Unsolicited idea # 82: In addition to a banner use some of that great street-facing real estate on the north wall for a weekly calendar. I don’t know how to execute it, but I imagine driving by there and each week looking to see what’s “fresh”. Because it changes all the time, I wouldn’t tune it out and stop seeing it (to mix a metaphor). So maybe it’s got a few fixed items “Music” “Gallery” “???” and “Fair trade or Stumptown coffee have kind of fixed places on the graphic, with a place to write in or a readerboard type thing for what day and who/what is on. So you get “Music: the rocking whoevers FRI” Gallery: “Phtography by Annie Liebowitz Thru 1/31” “Community: QA Peace Activist Netowrk THURS @7” and “Stumptown Coffee and Free WiFi: EVERY DAY”.

    So you train people a) to look as they drive by; b) where the Q is, c)what kind of stuff goes on there and you get people talking about it.

  17. 3mily says:

    I agree with JPKang about the lettering… this design has a little too much word-age & some of it’s vaguely redundant. It’s not necessary to put the mission/vision on a large outside sign. “Neighbourhood” is central to the mission, but way too much information for a sign. Save that for brochures! I like JP’s suggestion: Q Café | Featuring Art, Live Music, and Community Events

    I’d go with #2 or #3 in terms of colours.

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