Branding is everything. It is the base of establishing a successful design company. Just think about all the large companies that everyone keeps running to. Is the quality the only thing that makes them stand out? No, it is the brand. There are numerous talented designers who could maybe even do a better job on some projects, but the clients who can choose from a vast number of options will go for the well-known brand.
As essential it is to build a powerful brand that will drive clients to you, the fact is that creating a name for yourself isn’t something that can happen overnight. Especially, it is not something that will come to you without any effort. Building a brand is a process that demands your full attention and dedication.
So, are you ready?
If you are confident enough in your work and are willing to take your business to the next level, it is time that you turn to personal branding. Among numerous tips that you can hear or read, here you will find the most useful steps to building a personal brand that you simply cannot overlook.
1. Create Your Brand’s Identity
In order for you to stand out, be distinctive, and create a brand around your business, you first need to know who you are.
This is something that you can notice in everyday life. People who don’t have strong personalities and simply blend in with the crowd will pass unnoticed and be easily forgotten. But those who have specific and authentic traits will simply stick into our minds.
Therefore, you need to get your business a personality. The business’s personality comes in the form of brand identity. It is what will distinguish you from other design companies.
There are several things that you need to determine to round up the brand’s identity.
This is something that can’t be stressed enough. You need to be original in order to build your personal brand.
Don’t even think about copying other design companies. Taking their ideas just because it worked out for them, won’t work for you. What made them successful is authenticity and you need one as well.
This authenticity needs to be found in every element of your brand’s identity. Therefore, when you read the following pieces of advice, remember that originality always has to be present.
Establish Your Brand Name
One of the main elements of a brand’s identity is definitely the name of the brand. You probably already have a name for your design company, but it’s never too late to reconsider your first option if needed.
72% of the 100 best brands have names that are created with made-up words or acronyms. The reason why is that it gives them certainty that no one else will have that name.
What can help you with creating your brand’s name is thinking about what is extraordinary about your company.
Make sure that the name is simple, clear, and easily remembered. It is best if you choose a name that is easy to spell because it will help people to find you quickly on the internet.
Create a Distinctive Logo
This is something that every design company focuses on – the logo.
The logo is sometimes even more recognizable than the name. As visual beings, people are more likely to remember the image than the words.
Research shows that 90% of information that gets transmitted to the brain is visual. Additionally, visuals are processed 60,000 times faster in the brain than text. Consequently, your logo needs to be impressive. And as a designer, this is your opportunity to express your creativity.
Let’s take a look at the logos of some of the most prominent web design companies:
Can you notice one similarity between all of them? It is simplicity. There are no extravaganza, unnecessary wording, clip art, or unreadable font. The simplicity makes the logo easier to remember and these web design companies know it.
Some attributes that should characterize your logo are:
Choose Your Colors Carefully
Statistics show that the way a brand uses colours affects the visibility and reinforces brand recognition by up to 80%.
The colours you choose would be all over your brand. On the website, logo, business cards, and it will be one of the elements that will distinguish your personal brand.
When it comes to choosing colours, make sure that you don’t go over the top. Choosing a mix of 2 or 3 dominant colours is more than enough.
Show your potential clients that you have class and good taste by keeping the color combo to the minimum.
The colors of the brand are so important that there is actually color psychology that claims that colors affect how your brand is perceived. Therefore, deeply think about the colors you will choose.
Pick Your Style
Your style depends on lots of things but the predominant one is your audience. In order to form a style, you need to know who your audience is. Are you targeting startups whose owners are mostly Millennials? Or do you wish to work with experienced and more mature companies?
The audience you want to reach affects the style of your website, logo, and as we will discuss bellow – your tone.
The style of your brand will be noticed by the colors, visuals, content, and so on. The most noticeable depiction of your style will be your website.
For example, you can go with a more elegant style such as this:
In contrast to Mint Design, Lounge Lizard went with a more unusual, unique option:
Both of these companies are successful but they have completely different styles. From the brand message to visuals, they expressed their own personality.
Set Up Your Tone
The content you write on your website or post on your social media platforms needs to have a consistent tone. This will help your audience recognize you even before looking at who posted the content.
As it was previously mentioned, your audience is one of the factors that you should consider when you choose the tone and style of writing. But more importantly, you should be yourself.
Through this tone, you will show your brand’s personality so make sure that you stay true to yourself. Whether you prefer to have a friendlier approach to your clients or you like to keep it strictly professional it is up to you. Just deliver that decision onto your style and tone.
Create a Brand Message
If you had a chance to refer to a wide audience with one sentence in order to get their attention, what would you say? This question can be the basis for creating a brand message.
The brand message can usually be found on the homepage of the website. It should tell the visitors who come across your site why they should go for your design company.
What do you offer? Why should they choose you? Why are you different? These are all the questions that need to be answered through that brand message. Take a look at the following examples. They might help you understand what should a brand message look like.
The brand’s message needs to empower, motivate, and give the users hope that you are the one who will fulfill their wishes and make their website successful.
2. Establish Your Goals
As Forbes reports, 64% of consumers say they trust a brand more if they share values with it. If you wish to form your values, you first need to have goals.
Ambition and passion is what attracts people. By establishing and following specific goals, you will depict yourself as a driven and powerful individual. That is the type of design company that people will like to work with.
If you need some guidance, you can use the SMART goals technique. SMART represents the following type of goals:
- Specific (significant)
- Measurable (motivating)
- Achievable (reasonable)
- Relevant (results-based)
- Time-bound (based on a specific timeline)
The idea that can be recognized in every single one of these characteristics is that they are realistic.
The SMART technique directs you to set up goals that are possible rather than to create illusions about a certain outcome that will only lead to disappointment.
3. Introduce Yourself to the Audience
If you want to get recognize you first need to have a good introduction. One of the most effective ways to allow the wide audience to get to know you is to create the About/About Us page.
The About page is one of the first things your potential clients will take a look at. Use this as an opportunity to make a strong impression by using the well-known storytelling technique.
Instead of using a template-like, generic content, write a story about your brand.
Let people know how you came into existence, what are your inspirations, and of course, your goals in this business. Make sure that your goals are customer-centric because that’s what most clients want to hear.
You can even use reviews of best paper writing service to find a website that can transform your thoughts into a captivating and well-written story. After that, just use a website like Readable to make sure that it has a good readability score. Put all your effort into writing a story that will stick into readers’ minds because this is your chance to charm them over the screen.
4. Focus on High-Quality
Present yourself as a credible and trustworthy brand by delivering quality. Professionalism should exude from every aspect of your business.
Your website design should be perfect especially since that is the service that you offer to the clients.
Take a look at the following example of a high-quality web design website:
Huemor is a successful design company that had some major collaborations with brands and establishments such as Revlon, Net2Phone, United Nations, and others.
Pay close attention to each website element. The images you use need to be of high-quality. Videos, content you post, everything needs to look top-notch if you want to present yourself as a high-quality brand.
What can help you out is to include testimonials from previous clients that testify your good work and impeccable service that you offer.
Know that only high-quality companies can stand out.
There is no branding tip and trick that will help you out if you can’t make the clients happy. That is why you should think about including links to your previous best work. This will show people what you have to offer.
5. Be Consistent
All the star brands know this golden rule – you need to be consistent to build and maintain a personal brand.
The brand identity aspects we have discussed above need to be the same all the time so that the audience can recognize you and create an image of your brand.
Let’s say that you run a blog to connect with the audience and increase your online presence. If you want this blog to help your personal branding you need to post content regularly and show consistency in text, style, structure, tone, and so on.
The consistency shouldn’t just be present online. Show consistency through your relationship with clients and the people you meet. Have the same friendly tone, spread the same brand message, and offer the same quality service.
Exposing the same brand identity will make your brand memorable in the eyes of prospective clients.
6. Use Social Media
Well, we simply can’t forget about this digital phenomenon, can we?
Social media is one of the main marketing tools and therefore it is an essential part of your personal branding.
Just consider that 80% of consumers are more likely to evaluate solutions from the brands they follow on social media before searching anywhere else. Yes, social media is that important to people.
If you don’t already have social media profiles, create them now. It is never too late.
Some of the main social media networks you should focus on are:
- Facebook – The social media platform with the largest number of users.
- Instagram – The best networks to engage users with attractive visuals.
- LinkedIn – Professionally oriented social media platform where you can connect with prospective clients.
- Twitter – The place where you can share your ideas and attract the target audience with thought-provoking posts.
Of course, you don’t have to be active on each social media platform, just pick your favorite (or favorites) and get started.
The important part is that once you start with a social media platform you should keep the engagement consistent.
For example, if you use Instagram, post content regularly and interact with the followers. You can post photos of your work (if you get permission from the client of course), interesting facts from your niche, or you can even introduce your team members by posting something about each one of them. Social media is a channel where you can get more personal with the audience and establish a connection that will make you stand out.
7. Get Yourself Out There
Getting some exposure certainly won’t hurt your personal branding process. Besides working on your social media posts, blog posts, email marketing, and so on, you can rely on other people to get the word out about your brand.
One option is to collaborate with bloggers. Connect with bloggers who have some relation with your niche (for example, SEO experts or content writers) and try to get them to mention you on their blog.
The cooperation can go another way around and you can host guest bloggers on your blog. Moreover, their followers and readers will track them to your website and there you have it – organic traffic.
Another option that you should definitely put on your list of activities is networking. Getting yourself out and about is one of the best ways to build a personal brand.
Find out about networking opportunities on websites such as Meet Up or Dribbble. By getting to know other web designers you can keep up with industry trends and slowly get your company’s name recognized in your niche.
Are You Ready to Make Some Changes?
Do you want people to think of your brand as soon as someone mentions design? That is the dream, right? Well, in order for that to happen you need to come through with all the above-mentioned steps and tips.
Even though building a brand can be a fun and creative process it takes lots of patience. It can take years before you get to that point that you have yourself a well-known design company. However, that shouldn’t discourage you. It should actually motivate you because you’ll be able to make improvements and increase your efforts.
For a final revision, let’s repeat one more time what you need to do to build a personal brand for your design company:
- Establish your brand’s identity
- Set your goals
- Introduce yourself through storytelling
- Have a high-quality image
- Show consistency
- Actively use social media
- Connect and network
With that being said, all that is left to say is let’s get started on your personal brand!
Related to brand: