Brand Identity

Identity design for the popular how-to video site.

Pentagram designed the identity for Howcast, the popular how-to video site. Howcast hosts a library of over 100,000 short instructional videos—everything from how to type faster on your iPhone to how to survive a bear attack—and its videos received over 20 million plays in June alone.

So how do you design a logo for Howcast? The designers created an italicized “H” that became a directional arrow that could be used as a vehicle to begin the videos and would suggest taking the “next step.” The style of this “H” was used as a guide in designing all the other icons. The form of the "H" was adapted into a chevron that is used in the video graphics, where it indicates steps or appears behind titles. For its part, the unusual “H” also instructs viewers that they can expect a little irreverence in the videos, many of which are humorous and creatively use animation and props to convey useful information.

The team also designed a series of icons for the various categories of videos: First Aid & Safety, Food & Drink, Sex & Relationships, Crafts & Hobbies, etc. The identity was prominently featured in an iPhone spot, helping Howcast’s free iPhone app become one of the most popular, with over 500,000 downloads to date.

Brand Identity
New York
Paula Scher
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