Tip 1: Your logo is more than just a font.
As computers have become not only a household item, but also can be found in the pockets of most of your customers, people are very knowledgable about how brands and specifically logos are built. Don’t rely on a font that any other company is able to use for your custom logo. A logo is more than just typed-out words. Try customizing with symbols or imagery- and if typography is your style then focus on letter distance and size, and making the letters flow together in a unique way.
Tip 2: Your brand is not more than three fonts.
We often see companies with a great product and mission get lost in the sea of small business because they are not consistent with their fonts. Make sure you choose two to three fonts to use on all of your collateral. This is everything from customer facing materials like flyers, mailers, and your website and expands to your company culture as well. Inspire your employees with brand consistent memos, letterheads, and other on-point branding that will help keep everyone on the same page.
Tip 3: Avoid multiple online personality disorder.
Choose your voice carefully when speaking to potential customers online and attract your perfect demographic. Should you be confident, humorous, and clever? Or sweet, approachable, and fun? You cannot be all things to all people, so choose wisely. Whatever you do- stick to it. If you gain followers from heartfelt and friendly worded instagram post, you might lose them if you decide to change your voice on your next post. Seek the customers you want with your voice, and keep them.
Tip 4: Always answer the owl.
Who? Customers want to know who they are hiring more than ever. Not too long ago you could say say something like “BEST JEANS IN RENO” and actually get people in the door, but now with the internet you can buy anything you want, from anywhere. It’s not enough to tell them what you’re offering, you need to tell them who’s offering it. Make sure you are represented on your website and make frequent cameos in your social posts. Customers want a partnership more than a service or product.
Tip 5: Let them see the wizard.
The Wizard of Oz, while fascinating as a floating head at the end of the movie, was much more interesting when he came out from behind the curtain. Seeing what he was able to do in comparison with who he was gave the group hope and familiarity. We always encourage our clients to let their customers behind the scenes when it comes to their process. Whether you are mowing lawns or making tables, people want in on the magic. This could be in the form of a blogpost, a video tour of your office, or a social post about seeing the steps behind what you do. Everyone has an audience, make sure you welcome them with open arms.
Tip 6: People don’t need to know WHAT as much as they need to know WHY.
It’s not enough anymore to use your marketing or branding space to communicate what you do. Everyone is surrounded by WHATs all day. We see signs and advertisements, some specifically targeted to us, for almost anything we want. With that in mind just saying “We sell shoes” won’t hit the mark with customers looking for a reason to hire you. Instead, focus on the “WHY.” They can buy shoes from anyone- why you? Instead start with something like:
“We believe in equipping dreamers, go-getters, and trend-setters with the tools they need to explore and discover the world. We believe in movement, action, and pushing the limits.
CTA: Come try on a pair of our shoes and join the mission.”
— Nike, probably
Tip 7: Make changes all at once, and not very often.
We all get tired of staring at the same fonts and logos year after year, and so do our customers. As times change and trends come and go it’s important to keep your brand up to date and true to your company’s evolving personality. However, when you make changes to your brand- do it all at once. We recommend to our clients to wait until they have all the changes in place before a roll-out for two reasons: 1- Keep the brand consistent. Changing just one font, the logo, or a color will suddenly make all of your printed materials and other assets look inconsistent. Instead of a customer thinking “Oh they must be updating their brand” they’ll instead think “Well which one is their logo?” Make the switch clear and obvious so it looks like growth and not absent-mindedness. 2- It’s something to celebrate. A growing and evolving brand is something everyone can get on board with. It’s exciting, new, and fresh. Make it a thing! Host a countdown on your social platforms, announce a competition on your website, anything you can do to alert and involve your customers is a great way to ease the transition.
*Mabble recently gave a presentation for Tuesdays Together with Rising Tide. Rising Tide is community of Creative Entrepreneurs, men + women, from hobbyist to seasoned professional, gathering in the spirit of Community Over Competition. That Tuesday we shared the above oh-so-important branding tips.