The term branding can sometimes be hard to put your finger on. It can sound difficult and mystical, but there are all sorts of elements that go into establishing a brand.
Today I'll share 20 of them. Some of these elements you can start to implement today and each one can help establish your business better by representing your style and personality.
Some of the elements may be harder to implement than others, but each one can help add dimension and creativity to your brand.
Branding – the personality and mission of your business represented by visuals
From your website copy to your forms and newsletters, you can choose which fonts you use and the combination of fonts. To maintain a cohesive brand, try to keep all your fonts the same across platforms; this can include different categories like main titles, headlines, and normal text.
2. Patterns / Textures
It's easy to look like other brands with colors or even some design elements, but coming up with a unique pattern to identify your brand can really help you stand apart and help you look original and creative. Patterns and textures can be used just like graphics or photos.
Having brand photography for your business is a sure and immediate way to take your business to the next level. I talk all about brand photography and how it can help your business in this post. With brand photography you can represent your business with certain types of pictures that can help grow your brand to be recognizable and professional. If you're interested in getting some professional styled stock photos in your inbox every month, subscribe to my newsletter!
A sure way to stand apart with your brand is to use customized illustrations. A great example of this is Elle and Company. All over this site that helps creative entrepreneurs start and grow their business are customized illustrations that are easy to recognize with the Elle and Co. brand. Illustrations can easily show the personality of your business and show off creativity.
Having a logo for your business is one of the first things people think of when they think of branding, and it is a very important aspect in the branding process. But even though it's really important, it's not the end of the world if you choose to change directions later on– just a little disclaimer. Your logo should be on most everything related to your business, this keeps your business looking professional and legit.
6. Collateral Items
Items that can be included in the "collateral" category for branding items are wide-ranging. They can include pricing guides, letterheads, contracts, proposals, FAQ page, media kit, or welcome packet– all of these items can be branded with the elements of your brand and you can have creative control to make them as traditional or out of the box as you would like to set yourself apart.
Standard envelopes are fine and dandy when sending snail mail, but I would recommend finding envelopes in your brand colors (or even designing envelopes specifically for your brand) when sending mail. Doing this shows versatility and just adds to the professionalism and creativity of your business.
Sometimes stickers can seem trivial and not necessary but it's all about the details. It's always fun to get stickers for your brand and then you have a chance to market yourself by sending them with any other type of marketing materials.
Having a color palette for your business is one of the easiest things to implement and one of the easiest things to maintain. Color affects every aspect of your visuals and knowing which colors are your main ones and your secondary ones can help you know how to use them in all your marketing materials.
Having stellar copy that is distinct to your brand can often be overlooked but can make a real impact on how you can relate to your audience and how people perceive your brand. An awesome example of this is Whiskey Design, a design studio that speaks unapologetically about who they are with a distinct, humorous, and direct style that decisively marks their brand.
I heard it said once that your website is your best employee and it's true. Your website is your digital store front where you can display your brand thoroughly and confidently with each page you present.
Yes, I'm talking about what you wear. I definitely think that how you present yourself is how people view your brand. If you are in a suite and tie, people would view your business as professional maybe a bit traditional... if you have purple hair and wear loud, pattered blouses people may think your business is creative, free-thinking, and open to experimenting with creativity. It's all about how you want your business to be perceived.
Here I'm talking about the service or product you offer. The experience of working with you or buying from you need to be considered through the lens of your brand's mission. If you're looking to provide a stress-free, streamlines process, you should think through each step of your client process and think about how you can make each step of the process easy for your clients. Whatever your mission is for your client experience, make sure each step includes that in there.
The personality you have is something you shouldn't overlook when creating the brand for your business. Your personality is so unique to you and should come through with your business– especially if you have a personal brand.
The process of how you communicate with your tribe, share your expertise, and gain new clients are all ways you can reinforce your brand and solidify the personality of your business.
16. Initial Meeting
The first form of communication with a potential client is a great way to make a great first impression with your brand. Whether it be speedy, thoughtful, or even a free phone call, this is a way to make a great first impression and start to get people thinking about how your brand is unique and stands out.
17. Client Gifts
Client gifts are a great way to use your branding and also show how you care for your customers. Whether it be customized thank you letters or a gift box of goodies, make sure your logo is on some of the materials and that your personality is infused in the wording and gifts.
18. Email Signature
Having an email signature is such a little thing but it can really help you be viewed as professional. Definitely include your logo. I recommend keeping the signature short and sweet.
Your newsletter is a great way to add a lot of elements of your branding into one place. This is where you can add your personality, typography, colors, copy, logo, and even photography or illustrations to reinforce your brand.
20. Social Media
Your social media is your best brand ambassador. You can (and should) use your branding for each social media platform you use. And, like your newsletter, you can use so many elements to include in each platform. Be thoughtful, thorough and above all, consistent.
All of these elements are all ways to establish your brand for your business. And remember, it's about how you communicate with your audience, how you let your personality come through, and incorporating the mission of your biz. Was this helpful? I would love to know!
What are some elements that are easy for you to brand?
Are there some elements that you find challenging to brand?
What's your greatest struggle with branding?