Branding is such a buzz word in the online space. You probably heard one of these before:
“Everything you do is your brand.”
“You need to make sure your brand is cohesive.”
“Each social media needs to be branded to match your aesthetic.”
These things are all true, and if you’ve taken time to work through them, you’ve got nothing to worry about. You’re doing good in these online streets.
But here’s the thing. When most people tackle their branding they make 5 assumptions that are actually incorrect, and stop them from getting the views, likes, and COINS their bank account deserves.
Myth 1: Your brand is just your logo
It’s so easy to make this mistake, especially with everything online hinging on the success of well-taken photographs and glittery backgrounds.
But fam, your brand isn’t just your logo. Your logo is actually the visual summary of the brand you’ve already created.
Your brand is the summary of who you are, what you represent, the knowledge you’ve gathered, and the experiences you’ve encountered. YOU are your brand.
- How you talk online is your brand.
- How you take photos is your brand.
- How you respond to emails is your brand.
- The posts you like are your brand.
- The posts you share are your brand.
- The thoughts you share on your blog are your brand.
- The visuals created for you are the REPRESENTATION of everything above.
Myth 2: Your brand is a pretty IG grid
Say you got myth 1 down and now you’re ready to do the most online. SWAGGER! You the real MVP.
Here’s where that leads most people: grid pressure.
You know, that feeling of seeing the boss babes online killing it with their photos. They’re the ones getting all the likes and shares. They’re the ones getting all the coins to live the lifestyle you want.
But, pretty pictures don’t make or break your brand.
Remember: your brand is who you are as a blogger, business owner, whatever.
Yes. Your photos need to be visually appealing—-meaning—they shouldn’t be overly dark, nor blurry. But, you can create a well-branded platform using custom designed templates for quotes, or selfies.
Myth 3: You can DIY your way to success
Notice in Myth 2 I said “custom designed templates.”
Yes, you DO need a custom design. Here’s why.
If you’re using a template you found on Canva, you’re sharing that same design with possibly millions of users. That’s not your brand, as it isn’t unique designed to you.
DIY sites like Canva work well in 2 situations. You had templates designed for you and you want to add text on top of an image underneath. Or, you are brand spanking new to this online blog/business thang and you have no idea what you like as far as design goes.
If you’re in that latter category, it’s okay to experiment on the cheap until you find out how you want your online persona to be represented.
Myth 4: You need your brand together before you launch your blog
If you’re brand spanking new, it’s okay to not have a cohesive brand. You have no audience. You have no posts. You haven’t done anything.
Don’t waste your coins on visual branding. You haven’t “found yourself” in these online streets yet.
Take some time to experiment. Learn which design styles you like. Learn which colors you are drawn to. It’s okay to spend a year figuring these details out.
When you have a loyal following, make the leap. Don’t do it before.
Myth 5: You will keep the same visuals forever
Let’s go back to Myth 1. If your brand is you, then it should be fluid like you are. As you change as a person, your brand may need to bend to reflect that.
Every business goes through a brand refresh, or a full rebranding. That’s okay and normal.
What’s not normal, nor okay, is redoing your branding every 6 months, or yearly, as design trends change. your brand should be able to hold its own for a few years.
If you find yourself “Rebranding” frequently, it’s definitely time to reach out to a designer.
Visual branding isn’t hard, nor complicated. But, it does require an eye to get it done quickly, and correctly. If you’ve grown an audience, you need to spend your time maintaining your consistency: posting regularly, responding to emails/comments, and creating new products.
It’s extremely difficult to do that if you’re not confident with your visuals or they don’t represent you correctly. A designer can help you with that. It’s our job as brand designers to learn who you are and translate that into visuals you can use in your blog posts, social media posts, and print work.
If you’re wanting to learn what it takes to kill it with your visual brand online, sign up for #designSaturdays. Each week I give my newsletters subscriber 1 design tip that will improve their brand. These tips don’t require coding nor Photoshop.