Do you feel like you have outgrown your current brand and you need to find brand inspiration? Have you have changed so much since you branded your business the last time and it is time to update your current brand to reflect who YOU are? Does it make you feel like you have a giant “muffin top” every time you look at your current brand or website?
Don’t lie, you have a pair of well-loved jeans that you wore so much but now they just don’t feel good or fit right. No shame, it has happened to me too.
I have been working on my very own rebrand behind the scenes. In the past year or two, I have grown so much as a business, as a designer, and as a mother.
Some changes were subtle and some were big, but one thing I know, it is time for my own visual brand and messaging to shift to who I have grown into.
HERE ARE A FEW THINGS THAT HAVE REMAINED THE SAME:
- I wear my heart on my sleeve. I feel things deeply and I always want my clients to feel at home and comfortable when working with me.
- I LOVE bold colors and I am definitely not a girl who could have a brand that is full of neutrals or black and white.
- I work best in a quiet, relaxed, and comfortable space. I need to feel “cozy” to do my best work.
HOW HAVE I CHANGED?
- My fashion choices have changed. I have found that I am way more attracted to classic pieces, earth tones, and consider my choices ladylike with a twist.
- I am way more of a homebody. I love being cozy comfy in my own home and spend time reading, watching Disney movies, and taking long walks with my boys rather than having a night out or going to the movies.
- I am more confident in my services and designs than I have ever been too. I have never felt so at home in my business than ever.
SO HOW DOES THIS HELP ME WITH FINDING BRAND INSPIRATION AND WHERE DO I GO FROM HERE?
I start to look inward. I have to be inspired by myself and what I love to design and develop a brand that works to attract my dream clients.
When clients reach out to me, I most often hear that they are ready for more – they are longing for more and feel like things are just “off” with their current brand.
Most of the time they are looking to rebrand because their current brand was either something they “tossed up” real quick to get started or they had worked with a designer previously and it just doesn’t feel right (and probably never did).
These clients have invested in their business by way of in-person workshops, online education, private mentoring, etc. They have really perfected their craft. They have a distinct style, know their services, and know who they love to work with.
WHAT’S MISSING IS THE FOUNDATION OF THE BRAND!
This isn’t just the visuals, it’s taking their values, mission, and message and bringing it all together cohesively and strategically to create a personal brand that makes potential clients swoon.
The problem is that so many people have no idea where to even start looking for inspiration, let alone A LOT of designers only design “pretty” things and not brands with substance or strategy.
What my clients need most is the help to dig inside themselves to find the connection between themselves and their brand. Once the foundation is all laid out, every design is easy to implement moving forward because we already know what they love and what they want to share with confidence.
There is no stopping a brand that is shared with confidence!
WHATS THE SECRET SAUCE?
How do you go about building a strong foundation for your brand?
🤭 Whelp, this is going to be so anti-climactic but there is really no secret sauce.
The biggest secret that I can share with you, is to look within to find brand inspiration.
✨Be inspired by YOUR very own work
✨Your own fashion
✨Your home decor
✨What draws you in and grabs your attention
The very first step in the process is to be inspired by what’s possible for your brand.
This first stage is all about gathering thoughts and looking for pieces that will spark ideas and get you excited.
It’s about getting into your creative zone and working out what you love and why. The secret to creating an unforgettable brand is to be unique – and creating an inspired brand that is all about YOU is as unique as they come.
You will want to start taking notes (and snapping pictures) of things that you love. Keep tear sheets from magazines, print off work that you have fallen in love with, and get into the practice of making notes. I advise my clients to use websites like Pinterest to do some research.
I have a four-part process to work through with pinning:
1. Your overall style
2. Shapes, Textures, and Patterns
You can find a full blog post on this process here.
While pinning I coach them to find brand inspiration by using searches like fashion, home decor, etc. But when they pin, I ask that they pin intentionally and ask themselves
- “Why do I like this?”
- “How is this relevant to what I do and who I am?”
- “Is this something that will stand the test of time for me or is it a current fad I am into?”
What you don’t want to do (and I strongly advise my clients against) is pinning other people’s brands or logos OR going to their competitor’s website and being “inspired” by what they have done.
This isn’t going to get you ahead. This is only going to guide you in creating a “B” version of what has worked for someone else.
You want to be a force to reckon with right? So it’s time to step into you and be original when you start to find brand inspiration.
WHATS COMES NEXT?
So now you have gathered your brand inspiration and feel like you have a solid visual direction. You have a Pinterest board full of pins or a scrapbook covered in clippings that you love but what do you do next?
It’s time to go back through your pins. Clean it up and curate it with only the best, most inspiring images based on how your inspiration has evolved throughout the process.
That means, delete the images that now reflect a different look and feel than the rest and clear out anything that no longer inspires you and curate a board full of images and emotions that do inspire you and the clients you want to attract.
Get rid of any pins or clippings that you can’t give a real solid reason for why you like them.
Once you have curated a collection that is art museum-worthy, you are going to pick 8-10 of your favorite images and create a mood board for your brand. This mood board will be your visual direction and inspiration for everything to come with your brand.
Just looking at your mood board will convey the feelings you want your potential clients to have when they come in contact with your brand and will ooze your style and personality!
If you are creating your very own Moodboard I suggest including 8-10 curated images, a list of adjectives that represent how your brand will be perceived, and then finally add the colors that are most present and will be your dedicated brand colors.
SO HAVE YOU BEEN THERE?
Have you felt like you have changed as a person and outgrown your current brand?
Here are just a few ways that I have felt a shift coming and how I am currently working to find brand inspiration from within.
- The bright bold colors of my current branding are bright, vibrant, and fun. I have always had fun with my branding, to be honest, I still do. So what shifted? Now as a mom and with almost 10 years of owning my own business under my belt, I am much more grounded in my process and in my own personal style. While I still love bold colors and making a splash, I am strongly pulled to earthy tones more along the lines of the deep hues of summer and the vibrancy of fall!
- My business has blessed me in more ways than I can imagine and I am so grateful for every day. I structured my business to support my family and have built-in flexibility so I was able to be a mom and have a career. As my son gets older and will be going into Kindergarten I have started thinking about my needs and who I am again since I will have a bit more time for my business.
What do I need to be at my best?
How can I serve my clients and myself even better?
How can I use this extra time the best?
- Later this year, my work schedule will be shifting and I will have the opportunity to start offering new services and building the shop out in different and exciting ways!
I have done the reflection and I can feel a shift in myself as I work through the process with my very own brand.
NOW IT’S YOUR TURN!
I want to challenge you if you have been feeling like your brand just doesn’t truly represent who you are and you know you are ready for more so spend some time reflecting on ways you have shifted and grown.
Take time to dig into your own work to see what inspires you most and what you want to provide more of, go through your own home and take notes on the colors and the textures you love most, and be aware of your surrounding nature as an inspiring gift.
It’s time to create a brand that is inspired by you and that shows your true heart!
If you are ready to dig deep with me as your guide and create a custom brand check out my “tailor-made” brand experience design service. This will take you on an exciting brand adventure starting with your brand foundation and then we can add as much or as little as you’re looking for and that your business needs. This could include brand collateral like welcome packets or stationery, and a brand new website with messaging that attracts your very own dream clients. It is truly tailored to your budget and your needs.
Not only will you have a new brand that shows your heart and style. You will also know exactly how to use your brand, templates, or website without feeling like you need to hire a designer every time you need to make updates.