Effective Photography Brand Guide | Master The Art Of Business Branding! 5 Tips For Writing A Killer Branding Guide
Effective Photography Brand Guide | There are countless myths and misconceptions surrounding the notion of branding, and if you’re just starting out and launching a business for the very first time, navigating the entire process can be a daunting task. Yet, if you’re serious about your photography business, you can’t afford to overlook the power of branding. At the end of the day, it’s one of the most powerful tools any business owner has, and when done right, it will help you turn your passion for photography into a solid source of income and your business into a household name!
In order to do that, you’ll need to do much more than find a cheap logo template and type in the name of your business. However, there’s good news – unlike what many branding agencies would have you believe, creating an effective brand doesn’t necessarily require millions of dollars, and it doesn’t have to be complicated or exhausting. In fact, once you take care of the essentials, it will become an effortless and mostly automated expression of your identity, creative vision, and everything you and your business stand for! To help you get a better idea of what branding is, what it isn’t, and how to actually write your brand guide regardless of your budget, we put together a list of the most important things you’ll want to keep in mind.
Should You Even Care What Branding Is? | Effective Photography Brand Guide
We mentioned that branding involves a lot more than creating a logo and calling it a day, but do you know what those other things actually are? A brand can be described as a business identity, and it cover pretty much everything from the services you’re providing, the prices, to the way you promote your business, the voice you use when engaging your potential clients, and, you guessed it, your visual identity, with your logo acting as the public face and the single most important representation of your business. But in order to get to the logo, you’ll first need to do some soul-searching.
Who Is Your Ideal Client? | Effective Photography Brand Guide
This is arguably the most important step when it comes to starting a business, not just creating a brand, so you’ll need to make sure you get it right the first time around. Remember, you’ll have a much better chance of creating an effective brand if you know whose attention you’re trying to grab. A brand that will appeal to budget-conscious moms, for example, won’t do you much good if your target audience are high-end brides to be, so narrow down your target audience and get to know your ideal client in terms of age, location, gender, marital status, and finances. All this will help you set up a brand that instantly gets noticed and gets you booked solid.
What Makes You Different? | Effective Photography Brand Guide
Once you define your target audience, you can work on defining your business in such a way that would appeal to your ideal client. The goal is to clearly communicate what makes you different from any other business in your area and your particular niche. Choose 5-6 words that describe the style of your photography – is it fun, edgy or classic, couture, polished, romantic, modern or vintage, stylish or hyper-realistic? This will be the essence of your brand, so take as much time as you need to make sure you get it right.
Create A Voice For Your Business | Effective Photography Brand Guide
What you say is important, but once you figure out your message, you need to think about the way you deliver it. To get the best results, create a voice and use it consistently whenever engaging existing or potential clients. We’re talking about the language and the tone of voice, whether you’re talking to your clients online, via email, over the phone, or in person. Using an inconsistent voice will make you sound less authentic, which is definitely not a trait you want associated with your business.
Sort Out Your Visual Identity | Effective Photography Brand Guide
Now that you’ve defined your target audience, the nature of your brand, and you even created a voice to convey that nature, there’s one thing left that will turn your newly created brand into a memorable experience – your visual identity. Whenever we work on branding with a client, we make sure we start off with their logo and build from there. As the face of their business, logo will be the backbone of the entire brand, so we try to find elements of the logo we can use throughout their branded materials, such as the color, fonts, or even shapes.
Once we’re done designing a unique, simple logo that accurately represents their brand, we start working on their style guidelines. This is a short document that regulates the look and feel of all future designs, whether we’re designing stationery items for them, a welcome packet, a website, or any other item, online or off. We create slightly different versions of the logo, various color variants, and define the exact color shades that will work for their brands. This way, even if they decide to hire a designer that’s not too familiar with their brand down the road, they will know exactly which brand elements to include to ensure brand consistency and make the new design an organic part of the overall brand ecosystem.