When you think of your branding, what comes to mind? If you’re like so many business owners, you’re raising your hand frantically because you totally know this: fonts, logos, and color palettes. Yay!
While that answer may score some participation points, you’re not quite there, because branding is SO MUCH MORE than the visuals. Branding can be the difference between a ho-hum biz and a holy-guacamole one, and the tips below will help you level up.
You talkin’ to me?
As with anything, killer branding starts with a solid foundation. In this case, that means knowing who your ideal client is. Your business isn’t about you and what you like, it’s about what THEY will love! Maybe you’re more dark and moody but your ideal clients are running around fields throwing glitter in the air. Or maybe you love everything floral but your ideal clients are more suit-and-tie types. Your clients won’t always share your tastes, and if you’re not appealing to them both visually and mentally, you’ll lose them before you even get the chance to tell them how your business is just what they need.
When you try to appeal to everyone, you resonate strongly with no one, and when you’re not connecting with your ideal clients, business can be HARD.
Here are a few things to consider when trying to decide who you want to strongly connect with your brand (besides the basics like their age, income level, marital status, and all that jazz):
- What is their “why”? Why do they need/want your services? What makes you their perfect fit?
- What do they do in their free time (favorite TV shows, music, books, cocktail, date night, etc.)?
- When it comes to social media, what platforms do they hang out on? How do they use them?
- How do they emotionally connect with your product or service?
- What websites do they have saved in their favorites bar?
- How do they make decisions about whatever you’re offering? (Are they impulsive? Will they ask for opinions? What things would they be looking for to help them make a decision?)
Before you do anything else, make sure you know who your ideal client is—down to a science.
If you were one of those people raising your hands to say that fonts, logos, and color palettes are what branding is all about, this section is dedicated to you. *Insert fist bump here*
And you’re right—visuals are really important! When people visit your website or check out your Instagram page, you want them to love what they see and be compelled to dig deeper.
With your ideal client in mind, think about these visual elements:
- Content (Do they want to read? Watch videos? Listen to audio?)
Not sure what they’d want? Do some market research! Poll past clients as well as people you’ve never worked with who embody your squeal-with-glee-because-you-just-booked-them client.
Find your voice
When it comes to words, what you’re saying matters just as much as how you’re saying it. Your voice is the powerhouse behind your branding, and you need to nail it!
Take a few minutes to write down a few of your favorite brands. How do they make you feel? Why do you love them so?
One of mine is Kate Spade. She has long been an idol of mine, and her recent death shook me to my core.
I love the brand’s bright, flirty, every-girl vibe. It makes me feel like with a little bright lipstick and a sleek handbag I could rule the world. When I walk into Kate Spade, I feel at home (partially because of this wall behind the counter that is SO me).
Figure out how you can make your ideal clients connect with your brand and feel at home, and captivate them with your copy.
I’ll make this one short and sweet.
Know what you stand for, what your “why” is, and what you want people to say about your brand behind your back. Make sure those things weave boldly through every single aspect of your business.
And there you have it: the low-down on branding beyond just the pretty Pinterest details.
Want to dive deeper into branding beyond the visuals? I created a free guide that will help you perfect your branding. Snag it here!