Your business involves many inner workings to operate successfully, but most people don’t see any of that—they just know the brand you present to the market. It makes sense, then, that your brand must communicate what you and your business are all about, both from a design perspective and in your messaging.
A brand is far more than just a logo or font family, though. Instead, it’s a unification of your business’ outputs, including (but not limited to) your website, social media accounts, logo, proposals, email templates, lead magnets, and any other marketing materials you put out into the world. Collectively, these elements make up your brand while allowing it to evolve over time.
The beauty of branding is that there are infinite possibilities. Your brand should be as unique as you are as a person! You don’t have to do what everyone else is doing (in fact, you shouldn’t!), so you can carve your path to showcase your business and its personality. That’s how you can differentiate yourself in a noisy market, so your ideal clients can see you raising your hard from across the crowd.
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Whether you’re just starting out with a new brand or considering a rebrand, here are some tips to drive your inspiration.
In the same way, you may roll your eyes at a mason jar wedding centerpiece, try to avoid using trends that will date your brand and keep you stuck in a certain time period. While weddings are one-time events that lend themselves to trends, your brand should be here to stay for the long haul. Classic, contemporary, and fresh designs are the way to go. If there are trends that catch your eye, spend some time breaking them down to see if you can identify the elements you love so you can translate them into a long-term approach.
Ask yourself the important questions.
Landing on your perfect brand requires some self-reflection, both within yourself and your business.
These five key questions will help to define your direction:
- Who is this brand speaking to? – Your logo, website, printed materials, and documents should all speak to your target audience.
- How does it reflect the offering(s) of the business? – If you offer luxury services, your brand should reflect that level of detail. Your brand must be able to stand alone and explain what your business does.
- Does the brand stand out against its competitors (or blend in)? – Some brands want to follow what their competitors are doing (which is quite alright!), whereas others want to look completely different to attract their ideal clients. Get clear on what you want.
- What are the values of this brand? – Consider what is most important to you and your business. For example, if your brand is eco-conscious, are all of your materials printed on recycled paper?
- Is the brand flexible, and is there room to evolve over time? – Businesses naturally change over time, and your brand should be agile enough to evolve alongside it. If you corner your brand into specific areas, you can end up stifling the creativity and output that drives your business.
Look for inspiration in new places.
It’s time to break out of the industry and think outside of the box. Try looking for inspiration beyond weddings and events—art history, architecture, fashion, interior design, and music are great places to start. These spaces draw you in and open your mind up to worlds you may not have known existed, feeding your creativity to inspire your branding. Also, skip the logo and color palette generators—these can help start ideas but are rather limited in their approach and shouldn’t be relied upon to create something that will stand out from your competition.
Your brand is much more than aesthetics—it’s your story. How can you tell the story of your business and its offerings through careful design and intentional messaging? That’s for you to play around with, but these tips will surely help to put you on the right path. Go get creative, friends!