Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design

Communication design in the automotive sector

On the fast track with design: well-created communication in the automotive sector

In hardly any other industry good design is as decisive for economic success as in the automobile sector. Audi, BMW, Ferrari, Kia, Porsche or Skoda – all of them invest in the excellent design of their vehicles and attain success in the Red Dot Award: Product Design on a regular basis. But in order to prevail against competitors in this highly competitive and saturated market and get customers interested in one’s own products, they also focus on tailored communication design which makes the brand experienceable with all senses. Elaborate creative works and well-designed brands are appreciated in the Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design. The prize-winning communications projects illustrate how to be one step ahead with the help of good design.

A brand book on the occasion of the 70th anniversary

When the Porsche brand celebrated its 70th anniversary on 8 June 2018, the employees received a special gift: the “Porsche Brand Book”, which was designed by STRICHPUNKT and received the Red Dot in 2018. With the help of reports and photo spreads, the first part of the publication deals with the fascination of the brand. It illustrates how Ferry Porsche’s dream of the perfect sports car began and what a Porsche will look like in the 21st century. The main contents and facts about the brand are featured in the second part. In total, the book conveys the idea of contrast and the power of combining opposing aspects, such as tradition and innovation, which are found at the core of the brand, its values and its products.

Staging a company’s figures skilfully

Car manufacturers present their economic success also in a well-crafted way. Today, annual reports are more than only facts and figures. They tell a story and provide a vision of the future. The new strategy of BMW Group places e-mobility, driverless cars and digitisation in the spotlight. This is reflected in the title “We are shaping the mobility of the future” of the Red Dot awarded “BMW Group Annual Report 2017”. Created by, it features a digital magazine with stories which bear witness to the title by recounting how four teams of employees are shaping the future with their ideas. The user experiences these through rich media content, expansive image galleries, videos and diverse individual scroll effects which alternate. Furthermore, a concise summary of the key facts and figures of the BMW Group can be found in the “The financial year 2017 at a glance” section in the online version. Interactive charts using animated effects provide the user with all the information in a very short time.

Thrilling commercial

Commercials are the supreme discipline in advertising. Companies across all branches invest in attention-grabbing spots like the highly entertaining “Follow” TV commercial which was developed by INFECTED. With thrilling chase scenes, it visualises the message that the new Mercedes Benz X class is the “First of a New Kind”. Produced as a 4K high-resolution film, “Follow” shows people of different nationalities and ages driving the new car. Rhinos and buffaloes, a flying superhero, spaceships and a cartoon character – all of them are chasing the protagonists who drive their car in front of various landscapes. Towards the ending, even a big monster appears, which, climbing over buildings, also starts chasing the car.

This is how a luxury brand sounds

Experiencing a car does not only mean seeing, touching and smelling it, but also listening to its very own sound which transports the brand message at a highly emotional level. In 2018, the corporate sound concept “Genesis Audio Branding” was an outstanding example of sound identity in this area of business and was therefore awarded with the Red Dot: Best of the Best. “From the rhythm and melody to the instrumentation, every detail has been carefully conceived and honed to create a harmonious contemporary sounding composition featuring traditional instruments and rhythms. Thus, it achieves high consistency across the various touchpoints of the luxury car brand,” summarised the jury members their decision.

In order to lend the Genesis a powerful presence in the premium automobile market, a 360-degree corporate sound concept has been tailored by Hyundai Motor Company Creative Works and why do birds. The motto “Quietly Iconic” is expressed through music which is gentle, distinct and confident with a firm score, communicating the brand as a modern and understated expression of luxury. Classical instruments underline the premium character and the rhythm, which has been inspired by the traditional beats and the sound of the Korean janggu drum, bear testimony to the brand’s origin.

Experiencing cars at the fingertips

Watching videos or reading information materials cannot replace the real experience, which gives the consumer the opportunity to touch and test the automobile. To ensure that customers feel comfortable, more and more manufacturers invest in extraordinary spaces. One of them is the Red Dot prize-winning “Auto Experience Space of He Tong Hang Championway”. W.DESIGN created this exhibition design for Qingdao Hopetune Automobile Sales & Service. It aims at conveying a sense of “infinite” experience, true to the claim “If the car has a soul, it is the driver’s dream of freedom”. The interior design adopts the shape of engine parts and was also inspired by the taste for cars and an interest in their extended lifestyles. Thus, a space was realised, which integrates automotive exhibition and sales, along with modification and maintenance.

Accelerating fully in the Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design

Still until 28 June, designers, companies and brands across the globe can participate in the Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design 2019. This is their opportunity to secure themselves the pole position in one of the internationally most-respected competitions. This year, for the first time, Red Dot is offering a larger platform to brands. They can choose from 36 industries in which to apply for the distinction “Red Dot: Brand of the Year”. From Automotive, Furniture or Watches to Electronics, Financial Services and Retail – marketing, product and PR managers are invited to submit communication works that portray a consistent image of their brand across different channels, for example using logos, adverts, packaging and websites.

Learn more about the Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design