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  • Writer's pictureBig Guerrilla

Dark mode branding

Updated: Mar 18




Embrace the Shadows: How Dark Mode Can Empower Your Brand 

The digital landscape is constantly evolving, and user preferences are a driving force behind this change. One trend gaining major traction is dark mode, a user interface setting that swaps the typical light background for a darker color scheme, often in shades of grey or black.



The Rise of Dark Mode:

While developers and designers have embraced dark mode for years, it truly hit the mainstream in 2019 with its widespread adoption on mobile operating systems. Users appreciate dark mode for several reasons:


  • Reduced Eye Strain: Studies suggest dark interfaces can be easier on the eyes, particularly in low-light environments.

  • Improved Battery Life: On devices with OLED displays, dark mode can potentially conserve battery life by reducing the number of lit pixels.

  • Aesthetics: Many users simply find dark interfaces more aesthetically pleasing.


What is dark mode? 

Dark mode simply changes the app or operating system interface to a darker color scheme, typically dark gray to black, though it can vary. If not prompted at installation, you can usually find it in your settings. Many users prefer it for readability, but be warned: choosing bright white text on black can backfire.



Why Dark Mode Matters for Your Brand

As dark mode continues to gain popularity, brands need to consider its impact on their online presence. Imagine pouring your heart and soul into crafting a visually stunning website or email campaign, only to have it display poorly when a user switches to dark mode. Inconsistent branding in this scenario can create a confusing and unprofessional user experience.



Benefits of Dark Mode Branding

Here's how embracing dark mode can benefit your brand:

  • Enhanced User Experience: By ensuring your branding elements (logo, colors, etc.) adapt seamlessly to dark mode, you create a cohesive and user-friendly experience across all interfaces.

  • Accessibility: Dark mode can improve accessibility for users with visual impairments, especially when implemented with good contrast ratios.

  • Modern and Sophisticated Image: Mastering dark mode branding demonstrates your brand's awareness of current trends and commitment to user experience, projecting a modern and forward-thinking image.



Creating Your Dark Mode Brand Identity

Here are some key considerations when adapting your brand for dark mode:



  • Separate Brand Standards: A common approach is to develop separate brand standards, one for light mode and one for dark. This allows you to optimize your logo, color palette, and other visual elements for each interface.

  • Logo Variations: Consider creating a secondary logo variation specifically designed for dark mode. This might involve adding a white outline to your logo or using a different color variation that maintains good contrast.

  • Color Palette Adjustments: While maintaining your brand colors is important, some adjustments might be necessary for dark mode. Consider using a desaturated version of your primary colors for text and UI elements, while reserving the more saturated tones for accents.

  • Accessibility Testing: Ensure your dark mode implementation maintains good contrast ratios for text and UI elements. This is crucial for readability and accessibility. Tools like WebAIM's WCAG Contrast Checker: https://webaim.org/resources/contrastchecker/ can help you test your designs.


Examples in Action

Several brands have successfully implemented dark mode branding strategies. Here are a few examples:

  • Slack: https://slack.com/: This communication platform offers a seamless dark mode experience with a well-adjusted color palette and a logo variation with a white outline.

  • YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/: YouTube's dark mode utilizes a dark grey background with contrasting white text and red accents, maintaining both brand identity and user comfort.

  • Twitter: https://twitter.com/: Twitter's dark mode employs a deep blue background with lighter blue text, ensuring readability while creating a sleek and modern look.


Embrace the Dark Side

Dark mode isn't a passing fad; it's a growing user preference with significant advantages. By adapting your brand for dark interfaces, you demonstrate your commitment to user experience and create a consistent brand presence across all platforms. Remember to embracing the darkness, is ensuring accessibility and maintaining your brand identity. So, don't be afraid to experiment and find a dark mode strategy that works for your brand!

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