Building a Strong and Consistent Brand for Your Business
Building a consistent brand is a lot of work, but it’s worth it when you can create something your customers can recognize and connect with. Read on for tips on how to create your brand image.
By Monica Montesa April 14, 2015
Anytime you interact with Apple – whether online, in-store or with a product – there are no doubts about what company you’re engaging with. From their simple color scheme to their clean website and packaging, it’s easy to recognize when you’re enveloped in an Apple experience.
But how do they create such an amazing experience for their customers?
By establishing a consistent brand image and experience.
The Case for the Consistent Brand
Developing a strong brand takes a lot of time and effort, but it’s essential to the success of any business – and you don’t have to be a Fortune 500 company to do so, either.
I know you’re probably wondering if this is even something you should dedicate time to, but it is – and there are four big reasons why:
- It sets you apart from your competitors and brings a unique personality to your business.
- It helps you connect with your customers.
- It allows you to communicate your value to your audience and helps build credibility.
- It makes it easy for others to recognize that a product, website, social media post, etc. comes from you.
A company that has a clear brand is able to present itself as a reputable business, which makes it easier for others to understand how they can benefit from your products or services.
But developing a brand doesn’t simply mean creating a logo. It also includes every way in which you present your company image to your audience. From fonts to color schemes and button shapes to visuals, it’s all of these details.
As a result, it’s important to ensure you portray your brand consistently across all communication channels, whether it’s email, your website, or product packaging.
A Lesson in Branding from AWeber
To get an idea of what this might look like, we wanted to share our own experience with branding.
After redesigning our website to the awesome site you see now, we began updating all of our other branded properties (e.g., emails, content guides, our blog) so they have the same look and feel as our main website. The latest to get a design refresh?
To create a consistent brand experience for our customers, our design and engineering teams worked together to establish a consistent font and color scheme, and create a smaller, cleaner navigation in the message editors.
And our customers love it:
“Your new website looks sexy as hell. That’s all really. Just wanted to say I really liked it. Good job.” – Quote from one of our customers
Consistent branding at its best.
How to Create a Consistent Brand for Your Business
To help you establish (or redesign) a cohesive brand experience for your own customers, here are some tips to keep in mind to get started:
Know Who You Are
When you have a clear understanding of what your brand does and represents, it becomes a lot easier to figure out how to present it visually to your audience. You’ll want to use colors, images and fonts that don’t just appeal to you – they should carry with them a certain mood (or tone) you want to convey to your audience.
Pro Tip: Create a mood inspiration board to identify a clear vision for the way in which you want to represent your brand.
Embrace Basic Design Rules
First and foremost, create a logo if you don’t have one already. This is what will visually differentiate your brand from another.
Next, choose a color palette that is consistent with the emotion you want to evoke in your readers. This will ensure that your audience is completely immersed in your brand experience.
Once you’ve chosen all of these details, save them as your style guide, which you can share with others as your go-to resource when designing brand assets.
Here’s an example of a style guide from our new design:
Do Your Research
Get feedback from your customers to discover what they like and don’t like about your branding before you make the change public. If there’s a color scheme you’d like to use that some of your audience dislikes, having that insight early on can help you find one they do like before it’s too late. You should also take the time to research your competitors to see how other businesses maintain a consistent brand.
Pro Tip: Run a split test on your website and emails to test new design changes.
Executing Your Vision
To ensure that your brand is consistent across all mediums, you’ll need to implement your design assets anywhere and everywhere your brand touches. Take some time to jot down all of the properties that fall under your brand (e.g., websites, blogs, emails, pamphlets, social media images) so you have a comprehensive list to work through.
Once you have that information and you’re ready to implement updates, do a little research on branding to learn more about the best ways to create a consistent brand.
Or, consider hiring a designer who can get the job done for you.
Establish Your Brand Image Today
Building a consistent brand takes a lot of hard work, but when you create something your customers can recognize and connect with, it’s absolutely worth it.
How are you maintaining your brand image? Is it time for an update? Share with us in the comments below!