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Branding is more than your visual identity

Posted 27/7/2021


The Oxford dictionary defines branding as ‘the activity of giving a particular name and image to goods and services so that people will be attracted to them and want to buy them’.


Branding is often seen just as a visual identity, a company’s name, logo, packaging design etc, and whilst this is true, and these are the things customers will recognise a brand for, it’s so much more than that! Your branding is your ethos, your personality, your USP, the thing that makes you stand apart from other similar businesses, or similar products. 


When I begin working on a logo or branding project with a customer I ask for information about their business, about their company values, what the company name means to them or why they chose it, how they wish their company to be perceived, and anything else they can tell me about their business. I visit their website and social media accounts to get a feel for their business. This helps me to design a visual representation of their brand that’s inline with what they stand for.


Branding can change how people perceive your business, it can bring in new customers and a larger audience, but it can also do the opposite if it isn’t inline with what you want to represent.


Colours are important! Choosing a colour for your branding can be a minefield, it’s not really as simple as picking your favourite colour and going with that. After thinking about your company values and what you want your branding to represent, it would be well worth having a look into colour theory and finding out what the different colours represent.


My brand colour is purple, which represents quality, loyalty, luxury, as well as creativity and wisdom. It also has positive emotional links thanks to Cadbury… who doesn’t like chocolate?! 


You can start by looking on Pinterest, or at images online; perhaps make a moodboard or a collection of images which you feel align with your company values and identity. Often the colours you choose will be instinctive, you’ve got to like your own brand colours after all, but if you can look a little deeper into the choices you make it will help to build a stronger brand identity. Perhaps being ethical is very important to your company? If so, have a look at the greens and softer colours found in nature. Perhaps your company deals with heating or insulation products? In this case I would look at colours which represent heat, going from cool blues through to warm oranges and fiery reds.


Once you’ve chosen your main colour, you might want to look at a secondary colour to complement it or as an accent colour. Having a look at a colour wheel can be really helpful to see which colours work well together. Choosing a full colour palette right from the beginning will help you with your consistency, as you can then stick to these colours across all of your marketing. If you choose a branding package with me, this includes a colour palette and all of the colour code information you need to ensure you use the same shade of the colours each time. This will, in time, ensure you become recognisable to your audience.



Don’t forget how important it is to show yourself, the person behind the business! 


People buy from people, and with so much online, it’s important to show your personality (and also your face!) to your audience. Include a photo of yourself on your website, and on your social media accounts. Introduce yourself from time to time incase new followers have joined your page, tell them who you are, why you started your business, and how you’re different from other businesses. You can also offer advice and support via your social media accounts, helping your audience with their own projects and also building your own reputation as an expert in your field.


So, on that note… Hi, I’m Steph! My husband Gary and I have four children - our girls are 12 and 10, and our boys are 7 and 5. We’ve been married for 13 years, we’re both self employed (Gary’s a builder) and we’re mid house extension, so things are always a little crazy here with lots going on! It’s the summer holidays now so the kids are all at home every day, and I’m balancing spending time with them, having fun days out, camping trips, and of course working! I’m mostly working in the evenings now, but as the kids are getting bigger it’s easier to work in the daytime than it used to be!


I’ve been working as a freelance graphic designer since January 2018. I have a degree in Graphic Design, from DeMontfort University in Leicester; I graduated back in 2005. 


I love helping small businesses with their branding and marketing materials, producing designs which ensure a professional first impression and help my customers build a recognisable brand. You can find out more about what I do, my packages and prices here on my website, and I also try to share useful information on here and on my social media accounts.


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