Unfortunately, many new clients come to our branding agency asking us to fix this mistake. They hired a brand stylist or graphic designer, but the design they received doesn’t reflect their company’s unique experience, nor talk to their ideal client. This results in ineffective branding. The website receives hardly any inquires and crickets can be heard from the social media pages. Sales are plateaued and the website is basically an unused poster. They’re not being booked and their product is not selling.
We worked with a wonderful small business owner. She paid other individuals to design a logo, develop a website, and even manage social media. She was checking off all of the boxes, but she wasn’t getting any attention online and her product wasn’t selling. After everything, she came to us exasperated.
After discussing her company, we realized there was one big missing link. All of the elements created for her were not talking to her ideal client. She was simply never asked the question, “Who is your ideal client?”. This resulted in professional branding that simply didn’t do its job — it didn’t successfully promote the business. The logo and website weren’t attracting her ideal client.
As we worked with her, we identified her ideal client, her story, and what she does that’s unique to her industry. We identified how she can rise above the noise in the market. These critical questions had not previously been considered. In fact, her business and her unique offering were not even part of the brand.
A similar circumstance occurred with another client. Their website was done, photos were taken, and the launch party was scheduled. They just needed a logo. However, after reviewing the site and photography, we realized that there was a big disconnect in colors, fonts, mood, vibe, and voice. It was confusing and wasn’t cohesive at all. We had to start from scratch in some ways to do the market research required to ensure that their branding would be successful.
Before You Design
We understand the desire to push forward. You want to do as much yourself as you can, and to check off the branding boxes… logo, website, social media. However, unless you begin the process with an understanding of your ideal client and the mood your branding should set, you’ll miss crucial opportunities to attract and compel your ideal clients to choose your business over another.
Conduct the Research
There is so much more to the branding process than graphic design. The research is critical. Your brand stylist should dig deep to understand the essence of the company, the product, and the service. Before any design work is done, you and the designer should be on the same page as to why someone will pay attention to you. What makes you unique and how can that be incorporated into the ultimate colors, fonts and designs you choose? What story does your business need to tell?
Before you create any other branding materials for your business, ask yourself, “Who is my ideal client and what makes my business stand out?”
If you need help with the process, we offer logo design and web development services that begin with a Brand Clarity Process — asking you the right questions so your branding can be effective.