What’s Typography Got to Do With It?

typographyCategory: Opinion

In a nutshell, everything.

You spend weeks, months, possibly years developing your company logo so that it clearly defines your brand. But have you given as much thought to the font you use for corporate communication?

Typographythe style and appearance of wordsmatters.

Words literally swirl all around us, from TV commercials to roadside billboards to the digital menus now appearing at most fast food chains. And just like the images that are used in those mediums, text color, size, weight and font all make a difference.

Think of it this way: If you receive an email in purple Comic Sans 14-point font, are you going to take it as seriously as one written in black Times New Roman 11-point font? Probably not.

It’s a concept that modern brands understand well.

Typeface (a family of related fonts) not only helps convey what your message is about, but who you are as a company.

Netflix’s New Typography


Netflix made waves when it unveiled its own typography, Netflix Sans, in March of this year. The font was designed in-house, and appears on all original show titles as well as branding and marketing materials. The reason was twofold: To save millions in licensing (fonts are not free!), but more importantly, to impart brand identity across business verticals.

Other companies caught on quickly.

Arby’s Gets Saucy with Their New Font


Arby’s put a playful twist on the concept last month when it debuted Saucy AF, a “calligraphy” style font drawn with Arby’s Sauce. It’s a deceptively powerful branding tool masquerading in ketchupy fun.

Airbnb Typeface Increases Readability


Within the same week, Airbnb launched Cereal, a custom sans-serif typeface, with the goal of increasing readability and creating a seamless experience between digital and print platforms. The latter part of that sentence is particularly important. The separation between “real life” (print) and “online” (digital), is becoming more blurred—and datedby the day. Cereal would allow the brand to, according to the company, “leap from button to billboard.”

What Typography Has To Do With Marlin

It’s a message that impacts us daily at Marlin. In crafting content, our in-house team must always visualize who our customers are, where the messages will play, and the diverse internal audiences watching it. Typography can radically alter the mood of a piece, and when done right, it quietly yet effortlessly pulls the whole idea together. A great example of this is our recent primer on swim safety for summer. Here, we let the word “Swimming” do the heavy lifting, echoing the water and signaling “summer” with a engaging Myriad Pro Bold font. It’s a graphic and eye-catching way to set the stage for what’s to come: Important safety messaging.

Start Improving Your Company Image Today

Now that typeface has formally jumped into the marketing spotlight, it’s time to take font matters into your own hands. You can design your own bespoke font with Fontself or FontCandy, customize existing fonts using FontLab, use WhatFont to uncover which font a website is using, or discover myriad new typeface options on WhatTheFont.

What font does your business use? Why? Tell us @themarlinco using #FontLove.

Carolyn Voelkening
June 12, 2018

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