The Pro Guide to creating a mood board for your brand
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We’re so lucky to be in this age, where it is so incredibly easy to set up and start a business. With so much to think about in the early stages, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with all the things that you need to have in place.  In this post I’m going to share my thoughts on why you may not need to go all out and invest in design at the very beginning of your business journey, and why it could be better to wait a couple of years before hiring a professional designer.

Just Starting Out

 When you’re first getting started with your business, it’s super exciting, you want to get things up and running as soon as possible, believe me I’ve been there, I get it! If you’re anything like me, you’re starting out with nothing or a very small amount of cash that you can invest, so you have to be thrifty. 

If you’re setting up an online presence, a blog, Facebook page or Etsy store, then you need to give your business name, and some sort of brand visuals.  Now at this stage you should hopefully have an idea of the kind of vibe that your business has, so using that as a guide, you can get set up relatively quickly. It’s advisable that your logo is created in a vector format, so it can be scaled in size. Unfortunately Canva doesn’t offer this, but there are a few tools, Inkscape (free) and Affinity Designer (about £50) which you could use to create a vector logo.

I would recommend,  if you don’t feel that comfortable with the creative side of things, you ask someone who does have an eye for it to assist, and maybe stick to just text based design in the beginning.  

Remember good design should be simple.

That Being Said…

 If you’re starting a  business and it has a physical shop front, product or needs some sort of signage, you may want to invest in professional design from the get go, as you it will be more expense to change it down the line, and it also may cost you customers if your brand visuals look anything less than professional.  

Just make sure you have a really clear ideas, you know who your ideal customer is, you’ve researched your brand name, and you’re truly in love with the branding before committing to it.  

Businesses Evolve

 If you’ve been in your online business for a couple of years or more, you can probably confirm that your business vision has changed since you first started out.  It’s a completely natural process. As you grow you become really clear on who you really want to be serving, and what your offering to the world.

You may have also discovered that your brand visuals are no longer resonating with you, or you feel a bit of brand shame* around your logo or web design.

*Brand shame – you feel embarrassed about sharing your website, business cards etc, so you tend not to, or you feel like you need to apologise for them, you cringe as they’re not the best representation of your brand.  (I’ve been here – believe me this is real, and not a good place to stay)

When Is It Time For a Re-Brand or Re-Fresh?

 If you’re feeling out of alignment with your brand design then it’s definitely a sign you need to change things up.  If you’ve been in business for a little while, I highly recommend investing in a professional designer to help bring your vision to life.  Hiring a professional designer, who can commit to giving your project their full attention, will give you excellent results. You’re not just paying them to design your logo, they will be researching your industry, to give you the best results for your brand design.

You may want a completely new look, with a fresh new feel, this would come under re-branding, where you’re giving your complete brand overhaul.

A brand-refresh, is more about sprucing up your current look, refining, changing colours or maybe including a few more design elements, but keeping the same kind of vibe.

Of course, you can invest in working with a brand identity designer at any point, but I do highly recommend that you have a strong vision for what your business represents, who it serves, and a general feel for the personality of the business, beforehand.  Knowing these before you start either working with a designer, or DIYing your brand visuals will make the process a whole lot easier.

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