01. Clarify The Vision Behind Your Brand
Though you may be eager to get going on your new business, it is crucial that you understand the vision behind your brand! Put some thought into the spark behind your endeavor, and define
you started your business. Most likely your vision drives from passion to help others pursue their dreams. Sometimes we have a hunger to work with creative entrepreneurs, aka clients that feel like friends, to create unique brand identities + websites that take them to the next step. Once we understood my true vision, the rest of this checklist fell into place naturally.
02. Define Your Niche
Most likely once you understand the vision behind your brand, you have stumbled into a list of *ideal clients*. People, companies or organizations that you would just love to work with. Try to be specific in defining your niche. This will help you craft content that speaks to ideal client that in turn attracts them to your business. Not only do you begin attracting a curated client base, but you also get to work on projects you enjoy.
Now that you understand the purpose behind your brand, it is time to put a face to your business. This is the fun part of setting up shop, and where you finally get to see everything come together in a visual way! As mentioned before, branding is
more than a logo, however the logo is at the core of your brand identity. In order for your logo to be effective, it needs to be fresh, concise and uniquely you. You don’t want to cut corners here, or save pennies. Your logo will have a permanent home in your brand, so it is best to start out on the right note and hire a quality designer.
04. Font + colors
In order to ensure consistency within your brand, it is pertinent to stick to a brand guideline. This includes everything from specific brand colors, fonts and typography usage. Whether you are designing a blog post graphic, a contract for clients or a presentation, it is best practices to adhere to a consistent brand identity. Through following a consistent design, you establish yourself as a professional in your field.
05. Consistent Social Media
Once you have your brand identity established, the next step is to create images to use for your various social media channels. If possible, try to get the same social media handle (or name) for each platform: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. Sometimes your business name might be taken, so you might have to get a bit creative to come up with a variation of your name. Though the social media handles might be out of your control, you can maintain a consistent online presence through using the same, or similar, images for your avatar + banner. This helps viewers recognize the account belongs to you, and confirms that they landed at the right social media.
A lot of businesses skip the previous steps, and jump immediately to getting a website. Though it is tempting to build an online presence as soon as possible, it is best to not take shortcuts if you want to build your brand with intention. These days, a website is most likely your best marketing tool. It establishes you as a professional, and gives immediate validity to your business. I know that when I am searching for a photographer in my area, a new dentist or any other business, I typically start my search online. If I come across a website that hardly functions, or is designed poorly, I subconsciously rule them out as professionals in their field. Needless to say, a website is a great investment for your brand!
There are many other elements to building your brand, as well as maintaining it as your business grows, however these six items will get you on the right foot! Do you have any other items to add to the branding checklist?
This post was originally published on spruced