What exactly is branding?
I equate branding as the essence of a product, business, brand, or person. While fonts, color palettes, logos, websites, and photos etc. play a part in building the brand’s essence, it’s also about how all of those things combined make the audience feel. Is the goal for the brand to make their audience feel empowered? Uplifted? Fierce? Happy? Relaxed? If creating a certain emotion is the destination, branding is the vessel that gets them there.
If you’re new to the whole branding process, here are 5 simple actions that you can take today to maximize your brand experience for your business:
Ask yourself these simple questions – How do I want to make people feel with my brand? Does my brand evoke those feelings now? If my brand were a person, who would they be and what would they do in a day? For a more extensive deep dive into the branding questionnaire experience, check out the best-selling and recently updated Brand Identity Guide: 2020 Edition in the Shop.
2. Create a mood board.
Your brand mood board holds the visual essence of your brand so with these images, you will be able to draw colors, prints, textures, shapes, and more for the rest of your brand aspects. “How do I create my mood board?”, you ask? First, compile a bunch of images you like on a Pinterest board. These images could be photos you’ve taken, images of things you like, places and people you love, another brand’s logos and colors that you admire, and so forth. Based on the images you have selected, you should feel a little more guidance as to the colors, shapes, and textures your brand will have.
Check out our CL Studio Sample Pinterest Board here!
3. Name things you DON’T like when it comes to branding.
If you search “brand design” on Pinterest, your feed is going to be flooded with a plethora of different design ideas and angles. So to help narrow down what you actually want for your brand, take note of the design styles you don’t like. Doing this carves out an image for your brain to mirror the opposite of those elements you don’t like. For example, I don’t like the look of a thick serif font, so therefore, I want something more clean, minimalistic, and modern. Trying naming 10 things you don’t like, whether it’s fonts, colors, textures, photography, etc.
4. Look at other brands.
The phrase “see to believe” comes into play here. One thing I always ask my branding and web design clients is to list (can’t you tell I love lists over here?!) 3 brands they love and why. Is it their personality-filled copy? Is it their clean lines and simple, modern branding across all platforms? Is it their use of color? Taking note of what other businesses or brands are doing that you love shows your subconscious more of what you want for your own brand.
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5. Know that nothing is final.
I always remind my clients (and myself) that brands are always evolving. Just like us! So if you love something now about your brand, but a year from now you’re not in love with it anymore, don’t beat yourself up. Because guess what? You’re elevating to the next level. Time to move on up and start the branding process all over again. It’s the circle of life branding.
For more tips on branding and the design process, check out these links:
- We’re always posting nuggets of branding and design knowledge on our Instagram
- The best-selling Brand Identity Guide: 2020 Edition (pair it with the Simple Brand Style Guide and you’re golden!)
- Get inspiration for your brand on our Pinterest
Chloe Leonard Studio is an LA-based design studio that cultivates intentional lifestyle brands for people and businesses from the inside out. Through beautifully crafted and curated design, the CL Studio specializes in branding, web design, ebook design, and more. Want to work together? Shoot us an inquiry here.