Finding YOUR Brand
Branding has to be one of my FAVORITE things to talk about because I believe it is what can change your business the fastest! I believe so many people are gifted at their skill but lack the knowledge in the area of business and marketing. If graphic design and marketing is not in your background then you MUST hand it off to someone who is skilled in this area. I hear so often “I don’t have the money to brand myself.” The truth in this is if you do not invest in your business FIRST you won’t have anything to grow. Proverbs 24:27 states “Develop your business first before building your house.” So many try to make a living off their business without investing into it first. It can be so hard to see all of your hard work going to somewhere that you don’t necessarily see the benefits right away. Branding is worth the investment because it will help you CHARGE more and MAKE more down the road. Do you want to reach your ideal client? Do you want to charge more but you are afraid? Do you want to have a brand that makes you proud to send your website to someone?
1. THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE YOU AND A MISSION STATEMENT This is the foundation of who you are and should be the foundation of your business. You are not a corporate office but a relational person. You don’t want to have a brand that is not WHO you are.. You will burn out and not be passionate about it. If your brand and business is built around WHO you are and the three words that describe you then the value of your business goes up. You are the ONLY you and their is value in that. Also, work on a mission statement. The WHY behind what you do. Knowing your mission really helps nail down what you want to represent you and even what service you provide to what clients you take.
2. CREATE A PINTEREST BOARD This sounds silly but I am so serious. If you sit down and just pin all different things to a board that you like- home design, color schemes, clothes, etc.. you are quickly going to find a style or theme amongst what you pin.
3. FIND A DESIGNER Do not try to do things yourself. Even for us, I am a graphic designer by nature, I feel like we need to have someone brand us because they will do so much better at pulling us in our brand. Make sure the designer focuses on who you are, reflecting that and listens and gets to know you. Also, make sure they are SEO savy so that you show up on Google and other search engines. Also, make sure you do not just get a logo or a site but an entire identity. This way when you go to do packaging, brochures, etc, you have a look and feel that rolls through all of it!
4. AVOID TRENDS Oh my did I ever fall for this! Try not to pick patterns or logos that are trendy. We want to show that our photos are timeless and will last right? Make sure your branding is also timeless and lasts!
5. REPRESENT YOUR BRAND EVERYWHERE Your social media images should match the brand of your website. Every piece of paper you put in front of your client should look like your brand. Don’t show things that do not fit what you want to represent.
6. LISTEN TO PEOPLE If people are shocked by your prices, or are shocked by your personality when they meet you.. you probably need a branding adjustment. The first things they see develop their opinion. It is so important to represent who you are WELL and what you provide WELL so that their is a smooth experience and they get what they expect.
7. NO EXC– USES No more excuses. You are unique and need something to represent that. Invest the money and get out their and let people know who you really are! Save up if you need to but make this a priority. Start the process and make something with a designer you are proud of!
8. WHAT WILL YOU STAND FOR What are you passionate about? Loving people? Helping others? Children? Marriage? Decided what you want to stand for an what makes you come ALIVE and make it known! Be honest about what makes you tick and show it!
9. IDEAL CLIENT Write down a list of characteristics or qualities in your ideal clients. For us it looks something like : foodies, enthusiastic, loves to travel, creative, etc! Think about the clients that you have LOVED and connected to most. Think about the clients that you would work with over and over again! This helps you make sure you are reaching those ideal people!
Sharing, serving, and celebrating,
Andrew + Chrissy