Welcome to week 2 of Word to the Newbies! Every Monday through August we’re talking shop – blog shop that is. Today’s guest is Chrissy from The Pearl Blog and her word to the newbies is all about brand.
I love how God plans thing way in advance. Last week’s topic Be yourself, goes along perfectly with what I will be sharing today. So often we get caught up with the trendy and popular that we lose ourselves along the way. The same goes with creating a brand for our blogs. How do you even find your “brand” if your blog is about you? your family? your craft? I think it’s simple. You are your brand. As much as we try to hide behind our projects, our smiling kids, vacations, and recipes, we are the blogger that others come to read from each week. That being said I am not suggesting you plaster your site with selfies – Lord knows I love a good selfie but there are limits! I think Stephanie Bryant said it best in her Influence Network class, Brand You: “Your brand is simply the space that God has called you to fill in the world. It is a promise to your audience that you will be the same wherever they find you, which builds trust.”
defining your brand:
When choosing your blog name I highly recommend picking a name that can change and grow as your story changes and grows. If you were to chose “mom of three” and get pregnant again, then what? you leave a kid out? you rebrand? Your branding is important. It helps your readers feel connected to YOU. Consistency in brand is important. Another way for great brand consistency is to use the same picture across all your profiles. My blog profile picture is the same for facebook, instagram, pinterest, google+, twitter and my commenting gravatar. You want to be recognizable immediately- by name, by color scheme, by design elements, by words, even by the general feel people get when visiting your blog.
How do you create a feel:
1. Consistent picture editing “feel”. I use the same instagram edit, the same photoshop action ect. 2. You need to have visual and verbal cues that let people know this brand is uniquely you. I use the terms “yo”, and “holla” often. I hope I am known for writing a post and having word(s) i really wanted to say crossed out before the more politically correct statement is made! 3. Try and use a similar graphic to title all your graphics. I use a faded line or a geometric shape. I even use the dashed line from my blog header. 4. Stick to your blog’s color scheme on your graphics, sidebar items, blog buttons. My main colors are black, white and gray, I use accents of teal, yellow, pea green, and fuschia.
Okay now that you know what to do, how do you find your “brand”?
First let me tell you a major no, no. Do not copy someone else. There I said it. SO often we fall in love with another blog’s layout, colors, fonts, ect. It’s hard not to just copy their brand but let their influence leak into our content. Just remember that their brand is made up from their personality. Be unique, Be YOU. Often we are tempted to follow the trends – oh the ever changing trends. And yes, I fell in the rabbit hole of trends when I first created my blog. There was the scrapbook element theme, the one large family photo header, the chevron – oh Lord forgive me for the chevron-, and so on.
Discover your brand aesthetic.
1. To try to solidify a design I created a Pinterest board of pictures of things I really liked. I filled the board with pictures of people’s homes, fabric, colors, paintings, and patterns that I thought represented me and things that I like. I also added fonts that I felt drawn to. 2. Next I looked at the things that stood out the most to me, things that seem to be repeated in pictures, then I made a smaller inspiration collage. 3. Create a final collage. Look at the pictures, what patterns are repeated? what colors are similar. Here is what my brands, final collage looks like. You can see what patterns I will be using, the simplicity based on the fashion photo and the bold pops of colors from the nursery picture. Now it’s your turn. Start your board, find what you’re drawn to, what makes your heart skip a beat, what YOU could look at all day. When you’re ready for the next step stop by my blog for phase 2 of finding my brand.
Momma to three. Wife to one. Child of God. Coffee addict. Craft hoarder. Martha Stewart wannabe.