10 tips for better branding

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Posted by - Starbots Creative

Phew! This month we have had branding project after branding project for all kinds of different businesses, charities and events organisations – it’s great! But it got me thinking about all this branding lark and what it is and just how exactly we do it. So I thought I would pick the brains of the team and let you in on our top tips for better branding.

1. Know your business
What is your companies mission or ethos? What is it you want to achieve for yourself and/or your employees? What is it that your customers will find unique about your company? Where are you placing yourself in the market? All these things will impact your brand and your brand should reflect your business.

2. Simplicity is key
You can’t say everything about your business in a logo, so don’t try to. Simplicity is the key. Create a memorable logo that creates the right feel for your business and brand. The brand created around your logo is just as important and will support this.

3. So it’s not just about the logo
When people say brand, people immediately think about the logo, and that’s a pretty important part of it but your brand extends to every aspect of your business from the way you answer the phone to what’s on your business card to your marketing campaigns. Think about consistency of things like fonts, colours, graphic elements, icons and images to help make sure everything falls in line.

4. What’s your tone of voice?
Tone of voice is just how you want to come across. Are you fun and friendly? Corporate? Or an expert in your field? Whichever it is you need to make sure that comes across in the images you use, the way you write social media post and in the fonts and colours you use. If you’re fun and friendly why not use an illustration or character to show it. We pride ourselves on our robot brand and people recognise us for it because its creative and friendly…like us!

5. Get a second opinion…and a third…or fourth
It’s so important to make sure what your thinking comes across to someone who’s not you. Even as designers we can get caught up in our own thoughts, we always get the whole office involved and ask everyone what they think. It’s always good to test your logo and brand before you role it out and commit to it.

6. Do commit to it.
Branding all falls apart the moment someone sees something bright and shiny that they want to try. Graphic design is evolving all the time and there are trends that will come and go, don’t get caught up in a trend when it comes to your brand and marketing, a good brand should be timeless. Dabbling in every trend going will just end up with your brand in a confused mess.

7. Will it work on absolutely everything?
Often when we design logos, we have to think about the end use of the design. A couple of things I keep in mind to test my design is; how will it work on a business card (will it work small?), on a dark/light image (are all the elements and fonts clear?) and in monotone (how will a gradient or overlapping graphics work?). There are loads of other things that will crop up but I find these helpful for a start…

8. You get what you pay for
“If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur.”- Red Adair. Branding is all about quality, getting it right the first time and working with a creative who is willing to work at it until its right. We always spend time getting to know a client before doing going to work on their brand, we work on it as a collective so that you get a wide range of styles and options. Value your business by valuing your brand.

9. Don’t Let your brand down
If you have reflected a specific company ethos in your brand, you need to make sure you maintain that ethos, from the receptionist to the CEO everyone must exude your brand, otherwise customers will see you have failed to deliver on your brand promise and most likely not return.

10. Put it everywhere
Use your brand on your social media pages, business card, mugs, pens, offices. The more people see it the more memorable you will be, and if your brand is good…it will be for all the right reasons.