When you begin the rebrand process it’s an exciting journey, (I mean, it should be?) You’ll begin to look at your business in a whole new way and all those things that irked you about your previous branding will be banished to the brand bin. When we use the word ‘brand’ though we are talking about two really distinct elements that need to work together to gather an audience that is both captivated and intrigued by what you do…
Your brand identity relates to all the visuals and lovely elements that go into building a recognisable and unique brand. This includes your primary logo, submarks, colours, patterns, textures, tones, and brand collateral.
Basically, all the fun stuff.
It’s often the element that you’ll focus on heavily as you try to capture the attention of your audience and as you develop your vision for how you see your creative business evolving.
Hand on heart, developing your brand messaging though is often the trickier element to get right and it’s where many new business owners flounder. Whilst they may have nailed their brand visuals, there’s just something missing – the brand lacks personality and there appears to be no human behind the pretty logo.
Your brand messaging relates to the values you hold, the ethos you hope to share, and the attributes that you believe your brand represents. Once you are clear (or clearer) on this, these messages will seep through into the content you create, the blogs you write, and the way in which you show up for those around you.
When we start to consider this and ask ourselves honestly whether our audience fully understands what we’re all about, we start to build a more holistic brand – one with heart, soul, and real meaning.
If you’re not clear on your values and ethos as a creative business owner, then you’ll never be able to share these messages within the content you create. If you’ve spent time working with a brand designer, then part of the design process will have involved digging deep into what you believe in and what values are truly important to you. To give this a little context the brand values we share are:
Take the time to think about your own values. Are you clear on why you hold these values and what they actually mean to you? Do they feel genuine to your business or have they been chosen because they fit with what everyone else in the world appears to be portraying?
The values you hold as a business owner have to be front and centre of your brand as they’ll allow you to speak in a way that feels like YOU. We spent a number of years creating content that was ‘right’ because it honoured the norm, but in the end, it never felt like us – it was just a lot of BS. Now we write in a way that conveys the values we hold; sincerity and honesty are at the heart of our design world which is why we tell it how it is without any fuss and nonsense.
As well as drilling down into your own values, it’s also equally important to get into the nuts and bolts of your brand personality. If you’ve recently signed up to our newsletter you’ll have received a list of 100 words that could be used to describe the soul of your brand – I know, we’re good like that. This list includes words such as joyous, uplifting, serene, demure, gentle, zingy, thoughtful, collaborative, and holistic.
What words and phrases would you use to describe your brand personality? Do you actually know and do others care?
If your brand personality is zingy and uplifting then we’d expect your blog posts to be full of life and zest. I would walk away feeling excited, energised, and ready to tackle the day. A gentler brand would fill me with warmth and softness as I scroll through an Instagram feed seeped with thoughtful words and images.
With no brand personality, there is no content. There is nothing to say, nothing to believe in, and nothing for your audience to connect with. Instead, it’s likely we’ll see images of your work with no context and no world within it. Where is the human side of what you do?
Take the time to sit with your values and your brand personality. This is not a two-minute job and it will grow and develop over time – are your values being represented? Are you sharing them in a way that feels honest to you? Before you start bashing out that blog post, or writing yet another bog standard Instagram caption, is your brand personality shining through your content? Check back in with those values and if it’s all feeling a bit tedious then take the time to tap back into where you’re really coming from.
Developing your brand messaging takes time. Yes, you’ll be offered quick-fix courses that will ‘supposedly’ help you to earn six figures from putting these messages out into the world, but honestly, there is no fast way to develop this. It takes patience and the ability to go back to the roots of your business and ask yourself tricky questions.
Is my brand truly reflective of the work and services I offer?
It’s also worth remembering that occasionally, just occasionally, we are going to show up because we feel we have to. Creating thoughtful content involves energy and consideration and sometimes you will struggle to get your messages across. Your brand messaging isn’t always going to come through in the way you want so cut yourself some slack and accept that it isn’t going to be on point, one hundred percent of the time. That’s just the nature of running an all-consuming business.
If you are working alongside us or you’re looking to begin a rebrand process, we’ll always spend the time encouraging you to think about your brand messaging. We’ll support you long after your brand identity is launched and you’ll also be invited to our Tribe where you can pop in at any time to ask questions or just connect with other like-minded creatives.
If you’d like to get to know us a little more then you’ll find all the info right here, but for now start to think about that next piece of content you create or the way in which your brand is being represented. There’s always plenty to read over on our blog or just pop us a message through our contact form and say hi!