Let’s talk branding 101, these are the most important steps when it comes to building a modern and profitable brand.
Building a brand is like building a house. Your brand is the foundation of your house, and your brand strategy is the blueprint. Like your house, you need to continue to build upon your brand.
One common misconception I see is people thinking their logo is their brand. A brand isn’t solely your name or your logo, though those things can represent and connect with your audience. Instead, it is all the factors that help set your business apart: the features your clients use to identify you when compared to your competitors.
In order to have a solid brand for your business, you need a clear brand strategy. One that is rooted in purpose, intention, and storytelling. As a business owner, you have a unique story to tell to your audience. When your brand design is rooted in strategy, it will tell a story. It will inspire connection in your brand with ideal clients that will leave them feeling empowered and connected to you. (If you want to learn more about how to inspire connection, read my recent blog post on How to Create a Brand that Tells Your Story AND Resonates with your Ideal Clients.)
Branding is about figuring out who your target audience, and finding their pain points. How can you fix them from your own unique and very special point of view? How do those people like to feel? Then a brand needs to emulate that. Branding largely has to do with emotions, what emotions and impressions do you want to invoke within your audience – getting clear on this and delivering your brand consistently across all touch-points.
You can DIY your brand, although we do not recommend it. If you are reading this post, I am sure you are in the process of branding and or rebranding your business. So when it comes to Branding 101, what exactly all goes into building out a powerful, show-stopping branding? Below are the must-dos in creating a brand that will up-level your businesses and connect with your communities. And when it comes to finding the right branding expert for your business, these are the must-haves your designer should offer in the brand design process.
When working with a designer, it is important that they do strategy. There is a difference between a brand designer and a brand strategist. We include brand strategy as a separate service, and in all of our brand identity packages. It is so important that your brand is rooted in strategy. If the strategy is done correctly, when you get into the design phase, it will be very clear what the design needs to be because it’s based on your target market, values, unique positioning and so much more. (I have a great blog post on brand strategy here).
2. Creative Direction:
Once you’re done with the strategy you want to get into a creative direction. During creative direction is when you move in creatively to execute the feeling that you know your target market likes to feel. This is done through creating mood (creative direction) boards, and it where you visually connected the dots with your target market and perspective on the emotions you want to evoke. I will say it again – storytelling & emotions is a HUGE part of branding. Brand design is a visual interpretation of this. All design should tell a story – and it’s during this creative direction phase where we connect the pieces together on how we would visually like to move forward with the brand.
Then we get to the actual branding. Remember, branding is not just your logo. This is where we put everything together. During this phase, we will take a step back at the branding as a whole house. You will have your logo, color palette, type suite, and your photo and media direction. From there we take a step further and look at your social direction, brand voice, copywriting, etc. All of this is combined to build your brand.
With these components in the brand process, it will assure that you have built a strong brand. It will set you apart from your competitors and create a level of trust in your clients, increasing the likelihood that they will choose your brand – over and over again!
If you have more questions about branding or are ready to start your branding process inquire below!