Kristin Pruis • September 6, 2018
When it comes to branding, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by that jumble of ideas you’ve got constantly bouncing around in your head. Branding for female entrepreneurs can be especially tricky because we feel tied to our businesses, both personally and emotionally, not to mention there are a lot of parts and pieces to navigate.
If branding feels just plain scary to you, don’t worry. You’re not alone! I’ve worked with tons of female entrepreneurs who feel the exact same way! They say things like:
- What is a brand, really? Isn’t it my logo?
- Branding seems complicated. Where do I even start?
- How do I know I’m doing my brand the right way?
Sound familiar? It’s ok to feel a little anxious or confused about creating your brand. It’s a big step to take in your business, but don’t let it hold you back from moving forward. You have to remember to start with the basics and just take things one step at a time.
So, what is a brand, really?
The bigger picture is this – your brand is what that makes you different from any other female entrepreneur or business owner. It’s simply what defines your business as unique. It’s why you stand out over someone else in the same niche. It’s not just your logo or your messaging or any one thing. It’s all of these things that work together that shape your audience’s perception to create your brand. You are the only one who has this special mix of awesomeness that is uniquely you. That’s it – period. If you start to think of your brand in this simplified way, hopefully, things will get a lot easier!
Related Post: What is a Brand and Why is it Important?
Breaking down your brand
OK. So now you may be asking, “if it’s that simple what else do I really need to know?” Now that you have this basic picture in your mind of what your brand is made of, let’s break it down just a bit further. There are two sides (or steps) in the branding process. First, there is your brand messaging. Second, come your brand visuals.
The messaging aspect of your brand is the not-so-glamorous side that so many female entrepreneurs seem to mistakenly skip over. It includes things like your mission statement, core values, brand proposition, and similar messaging-related items. Why do people skip this step? Well, to be honest, it’s because, for most people, brand messaging is just not sexy or fun like designing your logo. It’s actually a lot of hard work. It’s hard because it takes some serious introspection and research about your ideal client or customer… BUT, if your passionate about what you do, the work will be well worth it.
The visual the side of your brand is where you really start to see your brand come to life and you’ll start having those warm fuzzy feelings because your business is finally (and actually) happening! At this stage, you’ll work on things like your logo, your colors, fonts and other visual elements that help to define the visual style of your overall brand. So, when it comes time to start creating a brand, most entrepreneurs like to jump right to this step and begin geeking out about what colors they should use or what their logo is going to look like, but this is the WRONG approach.
Related Post: Visualizing Your Brand: What Does a Brand Look Like?
Branding the right way.
The best approach for branding your business is that your messaging should shape your visuals, which ultimately, in turn, shapes your entire brand. If you start with your logo or your visuals first, it’s like writing a paper without doing the research or making a recipe without having all the ingredients. Sure, you can do it, but will it be any good? Probably not. In the same vein, if you only have the messaging, but no visuals, it’s like having all the ingredients for something, but not being able to put them together to make something delicious.
When you’ve properly put together your brand, your messaging and visuals will complement each other. You’ll start feeling like things are in-sync with your business and you should finally be catching the attention of your ideal client. It’s like the ‘A-HA’ moment where you’ll have the clarity and focus you need to push your business to new heights.
Related Post: Branding Your Small Business: A Foundation Checklist
Does branding still seem stressful to you as a female entrepreneur? I’d love to hear what challenges you have in the comments and offer my advice! Or maybe you’re looking for a community of like-minded females to help you on your journey into entrepreneurship? Join over 300 women in my free Female Entrepreneurs Community facebook group for guidance, collaboration, and friendship with fellow girl bosses!