You want it! That beautiful website for your business. Those attractive business cards to wow your contacts. A logo to put on your shop window. Because you know you need to stand out, to look professional and make an impression.
So you go looking for someone to make you a website and design you a logo. Easy right? Just find a designer and ask for a quote.
If you are unlucky, you will get a quote, you will share an example of what you want it to look like and other requirements, and the work will commence.
If you are lucky, you won’t get a quote. At least, not with a brief like that. If you are lucky, you will be invited to share your story, to talk about your business and brand. You will have to maybe fill in a questionnaire, brainstorm about your brand story, research your visual style. You will prepare the basis, before you begin with designing. Because, how can a designer design you a beautiful website or logo if they don’t know who and what they are designing it for?
This is what is called the discovery phase. The so so important phase that no branding and design project can go without. It can be intense, time consuming and challenging, but the rewards are great – your brand will have that special thing that makes up your brand.
I like to compare this branding and design process I do with my clients with putting up a theatre show on the stage.
Here are the branding process steps I like to take with my clients:
My branding process in 4 steps.
1. Pearls are a girls best friend
Do the groundwork first: find a story to tell, distill the most important elements from it and set the scene. Uncover the pearls from within your brandstory to set the tone of your show.
What kind of question should you be asking?
- Who is the person behind the business?
- What is the vision for the brand?
- What is your mission?
- What values do you live by?
- What are you selling/sharing?
- Who is your audience?
- What do they get out of your product/service?
- What is your brand’s personality?
- How do you want to come across?
All this will make up your brandstory.
2. Costume & Make-up
It’s time to gather the pearls, the gems, that are your brandstory and start visualising the look & feel of your brand. The way I do this is through creating moodboards. You can choose to make several moodboards for different elements of an identity. For example: the brand’s all over personality/look and feel, the style of the logo, font usage, colour scheme, ideal audience personage, website, etc… whatever is needed to clarify the visual direction of the brand.
3. Dress rehearsal
The foundations of the brand are ready for the design process to begin. Costume and make-up are ready and the moment has arrived to put it all together and dress up it up: all set to design your brand identity: logo, colour scheme, font selection, illustrations, pattern design… this will reflect your brand and tell the story.
4. It’s showtime!
You are wearing your pearls, have donned your hat, feathers and sparkling suit and it’s showtime! It’s time to get on stage: what do you need to show yourself on? Website, printed materials, merchandise, social media presence, signage… It is important to get your brand story across in all your brand communications and steal the show.
A strong brand is more than a website and a pretty logo. If you’re ready to develop your brand with depth and purpose, then you need the foundation to last. So you see, before you can think of that website or logo, it’s important to take the steps that get your there.
All is there already, just enhance, exaggerate and show it. Which is something Mae West understood like no other.
Deciding to start with developing your brand can feel really overwhelming. You know you want and need a new and beautiful brand, but where do you start? Begin at the beginning. 1st. You get clear on your brandstory. Your brand’s personality, your ideal audience, your...
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