Everyone is talking about branding and with so many definitions flying around, let’s talk branding basics.

What is branding? Branding is consistency in your business, it is your image, and it is what you are showing the world. Key word here – consistency.

You are your brand so let’s start with you.

Starting a business will change your life – it really should – and not just monetarily but deep within your core being. Here are a few tips that have really helped me:

Take care of yourself and you will do your best work. I recommend that you read the Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod for an amazing morning routine that will help you start the day right.

Shower and get dressed every day. This is not a hobby – it is your business. Dressing for the day will help you feel confident and ready to face anything that comes your way. You never know when someone may want to jump on Skype for a quick meeting. Showing up looking like you just rolled out of bed is not the professional image you want to portray. Yes, you are at home but doing this one thing really helps.

Personal development is mandatory so reading/listening to things that help to open and expand your mind are a must. A book that literally changed my life is You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero. I read and listen to podcasts, audiobooks, or courses every day. This will help you with your confidence, knowledge and mindset.

Doing these things does not mean you will have a strong brand but it will really help you get clear on what you want. It will help you get aligned with your goals.

Business is always evolving

If you already have a business, it has probably changed a lot since you first started as have you and your confidence. That’s good.

Your website or marketing materials or even marketing message is likely not the same. Understanding that this evolution is necessary to build the business of your dreams is key. Knowing that will help you create a brand that is really true to you.

The hardest clients to work with are those who have no idea what they want to convey with their brand. They expect you to magically pull that from them. Sure someone can try to do that but then it becomes their vision not your own. You should have a general vision of what your messaging, goals, and overall objectives are. Without it your brand will be convoluted, diluted, and not a true representation of you.

Always be self-directed

I cannot say this enough. Getting advice from others is imperative like that from a mentor, accountability partner, coach or mastermind group but DO NOT rely on them for every decision.

If you cannot make the tiniest decisions yourself then you are not being in charge of your brand. Letting someone else make all of the decisions for your brand is a huge mistake. While you are evolving through self-discovery, self-care, and personal development you should be figuring out what you want and can make your own decisions on what that is.

Don’t follow – lead. Take the advice and decide how it implement it, if and only if it fits within the objectives of your brand. Do not follow Popular Polly because she created a service that looks like it is doing well. Create services and products that feel right to you.

Stay true to your brand

This goes for everything – stay true to yourself, speaking only from a place of confidence and knowledge, as well as using graphic images that are in line with your current website/branding graphics.

You should have a style guide or something that gives you all of your brand colors and fonts. Use them when creating graphics in PicMonkey.

If your brand uses circles in the design, use that in your social media graphics, add your logo and website URL, etc. These things will help associate your graphics with you. Each one should not look like a new creation although creativity is good but they should all look like they came from you so have the similar effects for all images you use.

Not sure how to create those graphics yourself but you just aren’t ready to hire help? Brandgasm is the perfect course for you – it helps with DIY graphic elements as well as copywriting. I highly recommend it.

Applying these branding basics will really help you create a strong polished brand that you will be proud of. Tell me about the one thing in your brand that you need help with below.

8 Comments

  1. Rene Delane

    Excellent advice, parsed out in small, crystal clear nuggets of wisdom!

    Reply
  2. Mallie Hart

    Great read, Rita! Especially the part about self-direction. I can’t tell you how many times a project has totally derailed because the client decided to get feedback from EVERYONE, from their septuagenarian mother to their BFF from pre-school (I might be exaggerating, but only slightly). It’s YOUR biz, YOUR brand, YOUR idea. Step up and make the decisions YOURself.

    Reply
    • Rita

      Thanks Mallie, I think it is a common problem that people take the advice of others too much then their own business becomes diluted. I definitely advise against every sharing your logo/website for feedback with anyone other than those who understand your target audience. I especially hate seeing “can you give me feedback on this…” in Facebook groups.

      Reply
  3. Jeanine

    Fantastic advice! Easy to digest and implement.

    Reply
  4. Sara

    This is so encouraging to just stick with your own brand. It’s easy to seek what others have and change our style based on trend too. Thanks!

    Reply
  5. jasmine

    I love this advice! So very true! I’ve always stayed true to my branding it is something I take great pride in. Its so important to keep that especially in todays blogging and online business world.

    Jasmine 🙂

    Reply
  6. Lola

    Lola Bell | Mile High KINK Book Club

    Thank you for the basic definition. I spend too much time on Adobe Stock therefore I am always creating something new too much. I don’t have a logo therefore I may need to start with that. As a book blogger, the consistency I have is posting book reviews that are not part of a new release blog tour. That is where I will start first I believe.

    This was great information

    Reply
  7. Samantha

    This is excellent advice. Thanks!

    Reply

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