6 Ways To Maintain Your Brand Identity
Whether you've put in a ton of work into designing your own brand through DIY'd or you paid someone it’s really important to have a brand identity and maintain it by keep everything in order. So are here are 6 helpful ways to maintain your brand identity.
So what makes up a “Brand Identity”?
Having a consistent brand identity will help you grow your business, attract the type of clients you WANT to work with and have a professional. Who doesn’t want to look professional and for people to take them serious? I’ll cover what a brand identity consist of and how you can benefit of keeping it consistent. I’ve listed the must-haves you should include in your brand guide if you are unsure of what to put in the guide.
A lot of people think that simply having a logo means you have a brand. However the logo is just one piece of the puzzle. It’s the foundation of your brand but there are many other things that help make it. Your brand identity should always include a:
Secondary Logo / Submark
Patterns & Textures
Imagery / Photography
If you’ve worked with a graphic designer (who knows what they are doing) to create your brand, you will likely or at least SHOULD have all these elements in a ‘branding folder’ deliverable. These will include files such as vectors, .eps, .png, .jpgs and PDF files and may include other formats as well. Make sure you keep these files safe and update when changing elements of your brand. This will make it easier for the next designer (if you choose not to go with the same one) or want to update it yourself.
How you should maintain your Brand Identity
Now that we know what a brand identity should entail, let’s look at different ways to make sure you’re maintaining your brand and keeping it cohesive and updated.
Brand Boards & Style Guides
A brand board is usually a simple, single sheet PDF file that has all of your brand elements. It will include your main logo in different colors, your mood board, fonts, colors, icons, patterns etc. Any brand elements that were created will be on the page. The benefit of having a brand board? They give you an overview of your brand and can help you make sure you are always using the same colors, fonts and image style when adding to your website, creating templates or posting on your social media. When working with other companies, rather than having to send them odd unprofessional screenshots of your logo and colors, simply send over your brand board - trust me it’ll look way more professional and will appear to others that you are SERIOUS.
Not only is it important to have your brand look cohesive on digital platforms like social media or website. but it’s also important maintain the same style for print collateral as well. For example Is your business card design the same style as your website? Will people be able to recognize your Instagram, and visit your website and see the same style? Although these might seem like small irrelevant details, they play a really important roll. They will greatly impact your clients experience (new or old) and can determine wether they will work with you or not. When handing someone your business card, you want to make sure that the card (along with any other stationery) reflects your brand and style and matches your website and other platforms. This will keep things professional and help you to drive in more business.
Packaging is a great way to use your brand and provide an amazing brand experience for both you and your clients. You can maintain your brand identity by designing the boxes, using patterned tissue paper, creating personalized thank you notes - all in your brands colors + fonts! Give your customers a great brand experience from the minute they order their product to the moment their package arrives. Making sure they can recognize you throughout.
Most customers today will look at your website before they decide to work with you. That’s why having a website is super important! Make the decision easier for them by keeping your website easy to navigate, branded and consistent. Make sure all pages are designed in your brand styles and that your clients can easily navigate your website. A few things to keep in mind when working on your website are your buttons (are they all the same color and size), use of font combinations (Is the same fonts the same ones you use on your brand board or business cards), and colors (is green really a part of your brand identity).
Another way to keep your branding cohesive is by adding a customized email signature to your emails. Making sure it is consistent with your brand and link it to your website for more exposure. Adding your social media is helpful as well, but make sure everything looks consistent. It is such a simple thing to do, and yet it so many people tend to skip over this. This can really impress your clients and they can see how professional your business really is.
Social Media is a great way to get future clients, and connect with old ones. Getting exposure and show off your shiny new brand. Wether its FB, IG or Twitter, whatever platform you choose to use. Make sure to use the same logo on all your platforms. Keep the color scheme consistent throughout your posts and don’t shy back from using templates with your brands’ font - that’s what they are there for! People are quick to unfollow you if they don’t recognize your account or it isn’t visually appealing with no design aesthetic what so ever. So make sure to keep your brand identity consistent and keep ALL clients interested.
My Point Is…
Your brand identity is made up of so much more than just your logo. I cannot stress this enough! Be sure to take advantage of every brand element by adding it to your stationery, packaging, website, email, social media and more. If you don’t feel your brand is consistent and you’d like to do something about that, please don’t hesitate to contact me here. I’ll get you right! I’d love to arrange a call and help you get your brand back on track!