An issue I often see with small business clients is the lack of consistency in their branding. So, what exactly do I mean by brand consistency? Brand consistency is ensuring that you are using the same color palette, typography, style of images, messaging, etc. across all of your digital channels.
One of the main reasons I decided to offer packages that combine brand design and strategy is because they are quite often disjointed in small business. For example, a really well-designed social media strategy is a great asset, but it doesn’t work if you are sending traffic to a website that has a completely different look and feel.
The ultimate goal is for your customers/audience to have a seamless transition between their interactions with your brand, whether its on your website, social media or print materials. Think about brands you know and engage with online and visit their website and social media. If they are a well-known brand, you will see similar imagery, colors, and style in all facets of their digital branding.
Branding Elements that Need to be Consistent
So let’s take a look at the elements I mentioned above that should be consistent throughout your digital branding:
One of my favorite aspects of brand design is choosing a color palette. Color is definitely something that should carry through all of your digital media. Your brand colors don’t always have to be the most prominent feature, but it’s a good idea to make sure they are visible. For example, on Instagram, certain businesses with include a punch of color in each image that reflects their brand’s color scheme.
There are many different places to find inspiration for your color palette, whether you are looking to refresh your digital brand or are starting a brand new one!
Another brand element you should carry throughout is your typography. Choosing too many fonts is distracting, so don’t go crazy– choose 2-3 that you will use when possible (ex: social media graphics). Many designers will pair a serif font with a sans serif font for contrast, but you will see plenty of brands that use exclusively serif or sans serif. Generally, sans serif fonts are considered more modern and serif fonts more traditional.
At the beginning of the brand design process, we create a mood board for our clients that incorporates all of their creative elements and images are always included. Imagery is very important when it comes to conveying your brand in a more subconscious manner.
Compiling stock images that reflect what you do and who you do it for you will help you when you start designing (or redesigning!) your website and creating branded social media and print materials. If you have the budget, you can also have a photo shoot so you can tailor the photos even further.
Ideas for imagery include photos of your ideal client doing what they love to do, using your product/services, and other images that reflect your brand’s mission. I recently started brand work for a firm that is targeting women within 5 years of retirement who are interested in progressive wealth building.
Images we might use include older women traveling, volunteering, interacting with their grandchildren, women using products from socially conscious companies, you get the picture! The idea is for potential clients to see themselves and where they want to be or could be if they use your service.
It goes without saying that your brand messaging should also be consistent across all channels and platforms. Studies indicate that people need to see a message at LEAST 7 times before they act on it. Therefore, make sure that each message is shared multiple times in multiple places.
It can seem redundant and repetitive to you, but that’s only because you are consciously seeing that message– your consumer is not! They are busy doing many other things, so they will need to see your message multiple times before it sinks in and it’s the right time and the right place for them to act on it!