Wireframe S5E5: Softening slick branding with a human touch

Philip Wang and Karlei Ayers help Hangover Coffee design a more personable brand

"Wireframe' Podcast cover. Adobe logo and the words "Wireframe" is placed on the left, with a headshot of two women on the right.

Wireframe reveals the stories behind user experience design and how it helps technology fit into our lives. It’s a unique, highly produced podcast for UX/UI designers, graphic designers, and the design-curious. Hosted by Khoi Vinh, one of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business. Choose your favorite podcast player to subscribe to Wireframe.

Hangover Coffee’s branding is pretty slick, but it’s missing a personal touch. Founders Natalie Ma and Melody Jung have focused most of their design efforts on marketing their pour over pouches with bold product shots and videos, but as a result, their social content doesn’t say much about who’s behind the company. They want their design to share more of their story to connect with customers and stand out from the pack. But how can they design a more personable brand?

A quote that reads "Bringing your own personalities into the branding as founders is crucial for creating that human connection" - Karlei Ayers. A headshot of a woman is placed on the right.

Natalie Ma and Melody Jung are roommates-turned-business partners who founded Hangover Coffee. Find their brand on Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook.

Natalie and Melody are big fans of Philip Wang, so we bring him in to offer advice. He’s the co-founder of Wong Fu Productions and owner of Bopomofo, a bubble tea cafe in San Gabriel, California. They talk about the benefits of bringing the co-founders’ personality into their brand content, and about how to own their power as AAPI founders. Find Philip on Instagram and Twitter.

Karlei Ayers is the designer-at-large in this episode. She borrows from her decade-long experience of working as a designer in the coffee industry and suggests exercises to draw out Hangover Coffee’s brand voice and personality. Find Karlei on Instagram.

This season of Wireframe is supported by Adobe Express—a new web and mobile app that helps anyone create great content from thousands of templates. Learn more about Adobe Express at adobe.ly/wireframeexpress. (Most of the guests appearing in this season are part of Adobe’s CoCreate program.)

Listen and subscribe to the show, and click here to read a full transcript of this episode.

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