As a member of some amazing facebook groups, and working with clients one-on-one to create amazing branding, i’ve heard the same myths come up over and over again. I love working with other creative business owners to create a brand and visual identity that truly represents them and attracts the clients they want to work with. But because branding is such a hot topic, and is discussed everywhere online, there can be some common misconceptions.
Today i’m busting 6 common branding myths and explaining why they are completely false.
Myth #1: Branding doesn’t really matter
Branding is so much more then just a logo. It includes how you speak, the way you write, what your audience thinks of you, your visual identity, and so much more. Your visual look is the first thing people are going to see of your business, and it will either establish what you do, or turn them off completely. What kind of first impression do you want to make?
Myth #2: What I have now is fine
Is it really though? Take your logo through this five step test and let me know if you still think it’s fine. Do you want your logo to be just ‘fine’ or do you want it to be amazing, everything you’ve envisioned for yourself, and bringing in your dream clients? If your logo matches all of those things, then great you don’t have to worry about getting a new logo!
Myth #3: I’ll never use my black and white version of the logo, therefore It doesn’t have to look good in black and white.
A logo has to be highly versatile. It needs to be used on lots of different items and will continue to be placed on items as your business grows. Everything from a product tag, email signature, business card, thank you cards, favicon on your website, social media images, invoices, newsletters, pens, t-shirts, and signage. As you can see from this small sample of items, your logo needs to work both scaled down under an inch, to blown up to over a few feet. It also needs to work on both light and dark backgrounds.
Every business is different and will have their own set of materials they need, but your logo needs to be versatile enough to meet the needs of all of those items, including a black and white version. If putting your logo to black and white takes away from its personality, or no longer represents your brand, then you may want to re-think your logo (see this post for more).
Myth #4: I can change it later, it doesn’t matter what I start with.
Going through a re-brand is time consuming, expensive and a lot of work! You have to find a designer you like, book them, set aside the time to get your goals and vision aligned, and then go through the designers process for creating your identity. After all that’s complete, you then need to re-design your website to reflect the changes, possibly get new photos taken, change all of you social media images to match, and go through past blog posts and update the images.
When you first start out it can be so hard to put aside the funds you need for a new brand, and it can be tempting to just DIY it yourself. But imagine creating something yourself, and then 6 months down the line, hating it because it doesn’t represent you. Constantly changing your look every six months, or even every year can diminish your credibility and brand awareness. How are people supposed to remember what you do if they don’t recognize you each time they come to your site?
Investing in your branding is one of the most important things you can do as a business. It gives your credibility, attracts your dream clients
Myth #5: I don’t need one yet, i’m just getting started
As mentioned above, investing in your branding is one of the most important thins you can do as a business. It shows the world what you do, and expresses your credibility to potential customers and clients. By investing in your business, you're also giving yourself the power of believing in yourself, and telling the world that you’re taking this seriously. When you’re just starting there’s lots of things you need and it can be hard to decide where to put your money. In my opinion, your branding and website are the most important first steps for a business.
“You never get a second chance to make a first impression”. -Andrew Grant
You visual’s are the first thing people see from your company, and you have just 7 seconds to make a first impression.
Is that going to be a strong first impression where your visitors trust what you’re saying, fall in love with your work and want to work with you? Or will they be turned off, their trust diminished and exit your website before even seeing what you can do for them?
Myth #6: Hiring a designer is WAY to expensive, and I could do it myself.
Hiring a designer doesn’t need to be expensive. Prices can range anywhere from a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands of dollars. It all depends who you’re hiring, what they expertise is, and what they’re delivering you. A designer with over 20 years of experience is going to charge more then a designer just starting out, and rightfully so. If your budget is super low, find a younger designer looking to get their foot in the industry. They will likely have more affordable options for you. If you think you can DIY your website with no problems, then find a designer that doesn’t include web design in their package.
If you have some design experience and you’re comfortable DIYing it, then by all means go for it! But if you don’t have any experience, then don’t waste your time trying to learn a program you’ve never opened, and trying to translate what you envision into a design just to have it looking sub-par. Save yourself the time and energy and put it into another area of your business like booking clients, marketing yourself, getting a website ready etc.