About Lauren Smith Brand Communications

Lauren Smith Brand Communications is a San Francisco/Silicon Valley-based brand design firm. We’re committed to helping businesses become more visible, competitive, and valuable through effective brand strategy and creative design. We believe in simplicity, clarity, impeccable craftsmanship, and a strong brand focus in all we do.

How We Work

We approach design from a holistic point of view. We prefer working with clients on a long-term basis—though we do take on individual projects. These partnerships make it possible for us to develop a deep understanding of a client’s culture, values, products, customers, and unique marketing challenges. We do our best to understand their brands as well as they do. This allows us to tell a consistent story and create a unified brand experience for their customers. We work on a lot of different kinds of projects but with a singular brand focus. It’s not unusual for us to work on packaging, literature, web and blog pages, or point-of-sale displays for the same client at the same time. But no matter what the project, our goal is always to serve the brand.

diagram showing how branding is applied to various media

About Lauren Smith

Lauren got his start in publishing and became assistant director of a large design department at the age of 25. Leveraging that experience, he started his own business in 1981. Lauren is passionate about helping his clients improve their branding through good design and consistent messaging. He has decades of experience working with some of the world’s largest companies including Hewlett-Packard, SanDisk, PayPal and Visa. Clients describe Lauren as professional, creative, reliable, and easy to work with. He’s an author and lecturer, has served as a judge for many industry design competitions and on advisory boards for professional and charitable organizations.

photo portrait of Lauren Smith, principal of Lauren Smith Brand Communications


We’re proud to be the recipients of nearly 250 creative awards from some very prestigious organizations. These include the art directors clubs of San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles, and New York, the American Center for Design, the Western Art Directors Club, and the American Institute of Graphic Arts. Our work has been featured in more than 50 publications. Some of these include Communication Arts, Print, and Critique magazines and books published by Graphis, the American Institute of Graphic Arts, and The Type Directors Club.

design award trophies


You can’t do great work without great clients. One of the things we love best about our work is our collaboration with smart, professional people. We work hard to ensure that every project is not only successful, but a good experience for everyone involved. But don’t take our word for it. Here are some testimonials from our customers:

“I have been working with Lauren for many years now on a variety of projects. Lauren is very creative and easy to work with. He always asks the right questions and understands what you want and always delivers quality work on tight schedules. I highly recommend Lauren.”

Sasha Faizullabhoy, NETGEAR

“Lauren is a great designer to work with. He delivers high quality work that helps us further distinguish our brand presence in the marketplace. He is quick to adapt to the changing needs and requirements of a high tech environment.”

Cynthia Teeple, Symantec

“I first worked with Lauren at BBDO in Palo Alto, CA (business-to-business advertising and PR firm) in the 1980s. His concept, design and production work were outstanding…always strategic and highly memorable. I next was fortunate enough to get to work with Lauren at Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley, CA when we launched the Sutter Health East Bay Neuroscience Center at Eden. Once again, his logo design work and advertising executions were consistently excellent efforts. I highly recommend Lauren without reservation.”

Bob Stetson, Stetson Consulting

“Having hired and managed scores of designers through the decades, it means something when I say I am quite pleased to know Lauren and have opportunities to work with him. His work is clean and beautiful—and at the same time, he communicates clearly, prices his work fairly, and always meets his commitments. I would choose him as a design resource in a minute.”

Nancy Coleman, Nancy Coleman Consulting

“Lauren was an invaluable asset to me as I set up my company, Senior Seasons. His advice, guidance, wisdom and experience helped me in developing all my marketing materials. He guided me towards a more unique, thorough, and effective branding than I would otherwise have achieved. He is a very talented professional and great to work with also.”

Kaye Sharbrough, Senior Seasons

“I’ve worked with Lauren for close to twenty years now. He’s a designer’s designer with a highly trained eye, incapable of turning out less than A+ work. But he’s not a prima dona. Lauren is incredibly helpful and easy to work with. Best of all, he’s totally buttoned up—responsible and professional to a degree that very few designers are today. In design, Lauren is about as close to a sure thing as you’re going to find.”

Al Shultz, Al Shultz Advertising

“Lauren Smith gave my business a clear and compelling identity. I constantly receive positive feedback that the overall look evokes professionalism. I really appreciate the process Lauren used. He asked very insightful questions to identify what my business was about and discern its core appeal and benefit. In addition to Lauren’s exceptional sense of design, I value his considerable business insights and experience.”

Craig Martin, Orion Executive Development

“Lauren took our vision for the company and turned it into a reality. We ended up with a professional image ideally suited to our target audience. This was the first time I worked with a designer in this way. His process really helped us find the right focus for our company.”

Felicia Gentile, BioInsights


We don’t price by the hour except under specific circumstances. We think charging by the project seems more fair to all involved. Our policy is to provide an estimate before starting any project so there is no confusion about the final cost. Should the scope of the project change, we amend the estimate and re-submit it for approval.

While we take on individual projects, we prefer to work on a retainer basis. This gives us an opportunity to get to know our clients well over time and to work with them as a partner. We find it rewarding to have an ongoing stake in our clients’ success. In exchange, our retainer clients are given scheduling priority and discounted pricing. To learn more about our retainer program, please call or submit your questions via our contact page.