Don't Make These 7 Branding Mistakes
Running a business is hard work, and there are so many things to consider as you’re growing, working with clients & moving towards your long-term sustainable goals. Branding is one of the most important pieces of that process.
So today I’m opening up a bit and sharing 7 of the top branding mistakes to avoid, so you can instead, attract ideal clients and grow your purpose driven business.
These are the top 7 branding mistakes that you should avoid in your business.
There are a lot of moving parts in a business, and they all work together to move you ultimately towards your goals. Branding is such a big piece of that puzzle. It’s the face of your business, attracting clients and helping you to gain the attention of the right people. It affects every aspect of your business from your social media to your website and each point in between.
You want every touchpoint to tell a cohesive brand story
so that potential clients know they are in the right place
and want to book or purchase from you.
Amazon’s Jeff Bezos said that “A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person,” and that’s a great way to look at it.
I combed through all of my past clients, questions people have asked on social media and just took a look around the web at other people in this industry to see if I could find any common branding mistakes that popped up.
These mistakes can really impact your brand in the long run.
My clients have heard me say this time and time again, but a good brand is more than pretty. It has to be built on a solid foundation of strategy, and purposeful decisions.
Only then will you have a brand that converts higher paying clients and moves you towards a sustainable income.
Before we dive in, if this something you’re struggling with in your business, make sure to snag my Free Brand Audit workbook — it’s a proven process that helps you identify problem areas in your brand, so you know what to focus on moving forward!
Let’s jump into the 7 branding mistakes to avoid!
1. Not investing in a cohesive brand identity from the beginning.
I have gotten requests from people in the past to do smaller projects like PDFs for social graphics, but they don’t have a solid brand identity as the foundation. Trying to design your website or graphics without a cohesive Brand Identity in place just won’t work.
It’s like putting the cart before the horse.
Designing things here and there with no guide or system is a recipe for confusion — your potential clients won’t understand what you do, your story or what you can offer. Because your brand isn’t built on anything purposeful.
A lot of people are hesitant to invest in a brand design experience, and I hear you! It’s a big thing.
But having that solid foundation for your business that you can build on for years to come is worth the investment. And you’ll likely get a return on investment more quickly than you imagine.
2. Not having a brand style guide
This is something that any good designer should give you if you invest in a professional design experience. And if you go the DIY route, it’s so helpful to make one yourself.
So this is something I give all of my clients at the end of our project.
It’s just what it sounds like — a guide to your new brand identity. It contains all of the specific details about your brand colors, fonts, hierarchy, logos, patterns and more. It’s the user manual for your brand.
I hate having to dig around in files for specific info, especially if I need it a lot. And a brand style guide helps eliminate that wasted time when you’re looking for the HEX color code or name of a font for your brand.
Also, if you have a VA or others on your team, it’s imperative that they have a brand style guide, so what they create follows the guidelines and is cohesive overall.
3. Following design trends blindly.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s something to be said about keeping an eye on your industry, the trends, colors, and what’s popular.
But it’s easy to fall into the trap of using design trends for your brand, even when they don’t fit your business.
Following the trends can cause a few issues:
It won’t work for long. In a year or so, the trends will look outdated and you’ll be stuck having to rebrand again, for the umpteenth time.
It won’t feel like you. You want a brand that speaks to your why, the heart of your business, and your ideal clients. A trendy logo almost certainly won’t do that.
A trendy design will almost certainly make you blend in and it will be that much harder to stand out and connect with your audience.
So let’s just stay away from those, please?
4. Doing what works for others, not you.
Trust me, I’ve been there too.
When you see someone killing it in their business, working with dream clients and making $$$ it’s tempting to try and figure out what’s working.
I’m all for finding inspiration online. But sometimes it’s best to put your blinders on and focus on your business.
Because likely, what works for other won’t work for you.
You have an impactful story and mission driving your business. You need a brand and website that highlights those intentional details to drive client connection.
5. Focusing on what you like, not what your ideal client likes.
It’s so SO easy to be distracted by our own personal preferences. And this is a big hangup a lot of my clients have.
In my brand & web design projects, I often have to remind clients — we want to attract this ideal client, so we need to step into their shoes and make decisions based on their thoughts.
Of course, I want you to love your brand! And your preference matters too. But if we want to be attracting that dreamy client, we have to speak directly to them through the branding, colors, fonts, etc.
6. Changing too often.
A brand should be a very solid part of your business, and you shouldn’t change it up unless there is a real, intentional reason.
This is where a purposeful, strategic brand can come into play, to prevent this from happening!
Changing too often can be really confusing for your customers. They will struggle to recognize your business and build that know, like, trust factor that drives them towards booking.
Of course, change is a good thing sometimes! But it needs to be a decision made with a lot of intention and purpose.
7. Buying a cheap logo.
Oh man, this one kills me. Buying a cheap logo can seem like a great decision when you’re starting out and don’t have the budget for a brand identity. But it’s a big disservice to your business for a few reasons.
The cheap logos are often sold time and time again, so you end up with the same logo as 30 other businesses. Not a great way to stand out.
The logo have no purpose, so it won’t help you make an authentic connection with potential clients. You know how I feel about brand strategy!
I believe in the power of a strategic, purposeful brand identity that can help your business grow for years to come.
So there you go: some big mistakes to avoid as you grow your purpose driven business.
And remember to click below to grab the freebie Brand Audit Guide, which can give you some extra clarity around your current brand design: what’s working & what’s not!