How do we strengthen brands with design systems? A conversation.

Christoph, please explain why design systems are essential in brand communication? And why do you need them to effectively strengthen a brand and create a consistent brand experience?

Christoph Faschian: Design systems are essential because they create a clear and consistent visual identity that is at the heart of a brand. In an increasingly diverse digital landscape, they enable a consistent message to be conveyed across different platforms. Without a solid design system, inconsistent design decisions could lead to confusion and weaken the brand experience. A well-designed design system, on the other hand, builds trust, strengthens recognition and lays the foundation for long-term brand coherence. In addition, design systems help companies transform - including digitization at all levels.

How can a well-designed design system increase efficiency in the design process? And how is team collaboration improved?

Christian Leuenhagen: A design system offers reusable design elements and components, this speeds up the design of new content. This saves time and resources. It also facilitates collaboration because all team members work on the same design principles. Everyone on the team implements the changes seamlessly. Lego building blocks are a great way to illustrate this: All components can be combined with each other, just like Lego, and then applied in the design system to websites, apps, and internal and external applications with a perfect fit.

Design trends are constantly changing. How does a design system remain flexible to address current design trends while maintaining brand consistency?

Christian: An agile design system accommodates trends without compromising fundamental brand values. Through regular reviews and adjustments, current trends can be incorporated while core design elements remain unchanged to maintain brand recognition. Just a full Lego box: now a house, ship or plane. Using the system puts the finishing touches on the daily work.

"A design system creates consistent user experiences that build trust and foster user loyalty. Clear design guidelines improve usability."

Christoph Faschian Studio Lead Hamburg at denkwerk

"Over 80 percent of consumers trust a company with a well-designed website. In a holistic sense, brand, experience, communication and technology have to work with the same vocabulary and mindset."

Christian Leuenhagen Design Director at denkwerk

How is the coordination and collaboration between the agency, the client and internal teams in developing and maintaining a design system to ensure that the vision of the brand and the requirements of all stakeholders are taken into account?

Christian: The coordination takes place in close collaboration with the client and the internal teams. Regular meetings, presentations and feedback loops are critical to ensure the brand is properly understood and the design system meets everyone's needs. Fundamentally, we become more efficient with design systems.

Christoph: Open communication and clear processes ensure that all voices are heard. Accessibility must be systematically considered. Code maintenance, loading speed or even the quantity of changes is reduced. Not visible to users, but: This also makes the brand an experience.

In the context of an established design system, what are the benefits of close collaboration between the agency and internal teams and the client? And how does this collaboration contribute to the long-term strengthening of the brand?

Christoph: The close collaboration allows for a deeper connection to the brand and a holistic integration of the design system. The agency contributes creative expertise, the client its brand knowledge. The internal teams contribute their practical experience.

Christian: This synergy results in a design system that is not only aesthetically pleasing, but also strengthens the brand in its diversity, and enables successful brand experiences in the long term. In addition, once established, the process becomes efficient - and saves costs.

Thank you for the interview.