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A more expressive Medium — starting with Medium

An introduction to our evolved brand identity

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A little background

Over the past several months, Medium has been rolling out a series of upgrades, all of which are helping us build a more relational Medium.

The foundation: the brand behind the branding

Medium started with a simple purpose: to deepen people’s understanding of the world, and spread ideas that matter. We did this by giving people a simple medium — a blank page — for their ideas to reach what is now a global community of over 170 million readers. Most importantly, as an open platform, anyone can have a voice on Medium, regardless of background, affiliation, or expertise, and share their thoughts directly, independently, and unfiltered. We’re proud to give these voices a home to grow, connect, and spark real, nuanced conversations — as well as the potential to instigate change.

Why now?

While our content and product offering have evolved over the years, our branding had not evolved with them. We needed an identity that better reflected where we stand today, and where we’re going. And we needed a system that addressed two important, tactical needs:

  • Our color palette was too pared back, subtle, and limiting. We wanted more flexibility and room for bold expression.

Our creative partner: COLLINS

I couldn’t speak about this work without first giving a huge shout-out to our partner in the process, COLLINS, the brand experience and design company based in San Francisco and New York. COLLINS has done amazing work with other next-generation brands (e.g. Spotify & Twitch). If you want to see a comprehensive view of their work with Medium, check out this case study.

The updated brand identity: overview

A brand identity is only as good as its ability to express the ethos of a brand. We believe this evolution perfectly reflects Medium’s past, present, and future

Illustration style

Very often a logo is what gets the most attention in a brand evolution. But I want to focus on the rest of the design system first.

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Color

At its core Medium is still a blank canvas for other people to paint on, which we represent by continuing to lean primarily on black and white. But for marketing surfaces where we’re talking about the Medium brand, we use an expanded palette of secondary colors to represent the broad spectrum of perspectives you’ll find on our platform.

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Logomark

Last but not least is the evolution of our logo.

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  • Medium is a platform for creators to express themselves, so our brand should never get in the way of yours. When you read on Medium, a symbol allows Medium the brand to take a backseat to let individual publications and writers shine
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The future: what’s next

The updated brand identity is just the beginning. Now that we’ve built a more expressive Medium, we’re eager to use this new language to build better and deeper relationships with readers and writers around the globe.

Written by

VP of Marketing @Medium. Seeking to make the world a better and more thoughtful place, one story at a time. Previously @Netflix, @Disney, @HBO.

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