With Julia Britten from JBS Print
Why, hello there. And welcome to my second guest ever guest blog post.
This month, I asked the lovely Julia from JBS print to write a blog about branding.
I first met Julia a few years ago at a networking event, and a couple of months later she asked me to capture some business portraits for her. It’s been a real pleasure to see Julia use these photographs on her website, and throughout her marketing material. But as you’ll come to read what she says, you’ll find that this is exactly what you should be doing too …
A couple of years on, and it was time to capture some up-to-date photographs of Julia while also planning her fabulous guest blog post.
Here she is:
Branding – it’s a subject I’m passionate about. OK, I know that’s an overused word, but seriously I could go on forever about it and how important it is.
So, firstly what is it? Well, it’s not just a logo. It’s everything that comes out of your business, whether that’s your email signature, your business card, your website, your employees, what you wear, what they wear, what you say (the tone of your voice) and your tag line and mission statement. The list goes on. It all reflects back on the image you are portraying of your business. And, of course, the images that go on your LinkedIn profile, your website and your social media.
Why’s it so important? It’s about making sure your target audience understands who you are and what values you have. A great example I use is from one of my clients. I finally got her to be a client. It took me about two years trying to impress on her the importance of having consistent branding. Meet Vivien. Vivien runs a beauty business from home. All non-invasive, natural treatments. A course of six, non-surgical facelifts costs about £300. The problem was that Vivien was handing out a much-photocopied price list, with out-of-date contact details and out-of-date prices. Her business cards had a different logo. Then she handed out another flyer that had a different logo and didn’t tie any of it together, with regards to style, logo, colour and message. In addition, there was a website, or two. Quite frankly is was all a mess. Did she really think that these pieces of marketing collateral that had had no thought (and apparently no care) taken was going to make potential customers
feel comfortable about spending a reasonable amount of money?
Working alongside another prolific networker, we persuaded Vivien that her business needed to be cohesive in every way. We gave her a new logo, designed a colour palette and applied that to her business cards, leaflet and website. We even managed to get her in front of a camera for a headshot. Once it was put together it now looks like the professional, clinical (but welcoming) business that it is. Surprisingly (to Vivien, but not to me), she had more enquiries when she handed out her leaflets. She could confidently give out herbusiness cards and was taking more bookings, and people were researching her, via her website.
Where do you start? Think about your business. Think about your ideal client. Whilst you have to be proud of your branding (remember logo and tag line / colours / font), will that also appeal to your ideal client? Write down a simple message that describes the benefit of your business. Get a good logo and name for your business. Choose a colour palette. Stick to a couple of fonts. Have a professional headshot taken. There is nothing more off-putting than seeing half a photograph where you’ve been trying to cut someone’s arm out of a photo, or a holiday snapshot with you holding a glass of vino (not that there’s anything wrong with that, in its appropriate place!).
Once you’re happy, then use these across every piece of marketing collateral.
Your social media, does that use the same colour palette and font? Can your target audience easily recognise everything that comes out from your business. Trust me, the “big boys” spend a lot of money making sure their identity is key. And, like them, remember to re-visit your branding. Keep it fresh and up-to-date.
If you would like to find out more, Julia has also recorded a video on this subject and you can watch it if you click here
And if you’d like to talk to Julia about anything branding related and how she can help you, you can visit her website or you can email her on info@JBSprint.co.uk
Oh, and of course, if you feel your photos are somewhat up to date, and you would like some fabulous new ones … you know where to find me.