Brand Consistency Matters for Business Owners | Braid Creative

brand consistency matters

Your brand is what makes you memorable—from the first impression on someone who has never heard of you, to a raving referral from a past client. And when you have a reputation to uphold, it’s imperative that you are reliably showing up in all the places your brand touches. This means that your business name, logo, colors, photography, tagline, offering, messaging, and tone are consistent and cohesive on your website, in your advertisements, on your stationery and print materials, on your social media, in your speeches and talks, on your windows and signage, at your events, or in your webinars. It should even reach into your own company culture— not only in how you make your customers feel, but in how you train your employees and how you work with contractors and vendors.

brand consistency matters


One of the first steps to creating a consistent and cohesive brand is with a brand platform that outlines at-a-glance who you are, what you do, how you do it, and what it looks like. Here at Braid Creative, the brand platforms we create for our clients often include:

Brand identity standards: this is a document that details all the visual components of your brand—including your logo (or logo suite if you have multiple versions), brand colors, typography and fonts, branded icons and / or patterns, and brand photography.

Brand messaging: this is anything with words—including your business name, a tagline, a positioning statement (often known as an “elevator pitch”), a brand story that connects the emotional “why” to the business offering, scripts or copy for how someone can work with you, and your creative process or steps you take along the way.

Your brand platform is the backbone of your brand that can then be applied to all the places your business shows up. You’ll want to revisit your brand platform any time you’re creating something new for your business—from marketing and PR efforts to client on-boarding.


Once you have your brand platform visually defined and outlined, it’s time to implement that look, feel, and messaging to all the places your brand shows up. The first thing you’ll want to do is take stock of where you’re showing up.


Website - make it a habit to read through every single word on your website at least once a year to make sure your design and copy are still properly reflecting your brand and business offerings.

Social media - not only in your daily posts that make up your ever-evolving brand, but your avatar, cover image, and profile copy are also opportunities for consistency and cohesion.

Email - from your newsletter template to your email signature and even your actual email address—no little detail should go unturned when it comes to where your brand appears

Digital products - if you have online courses, downloadable worksheets, or eBooks, they should all be consistent with your brand platform.

Digital advertising - from TV commercials to Facebook ads to native content and PR opportunities, you need to make a compelling impression that accurately reflects your brand so there are no disconnects when your dream customer clicks through wanting more.


Stationery - are your business cards, letterhead, and envelopes up to date and on point?

Brochures, folders, posters, books, and informational pieces - all of these are branded pieces that need to feel connected and consistent with your brand platform.

Packaging - if you sell products, is your packaging delivering the experience you want your customers to have?


Spaces and events - when it comes to in-person events, think about engaging all the senses of anyone who experiences your brand: what are they seeing, smelling, tasting, and hearing? These are often things that aren’t defined in your brand platform (especially if you’re primarily an online business), but they are considerations that can make or break an experience for your customer.

Signage and touch-points - from your logo signage, to window clings, to car wraps, to informational or directional signage, and even printed memos, these tactics—no matter how small—are deserving of brand consideration.

Your personal style - if you’re a personal brand, the way you show up to networking events is a reflection of your brand. If you’re not a personal brand, you (or the employees you are hiring) are a reflection of the company you represent.


Photography is an aspect of your brand that can show up across all of your brand platforms in person and online. Photos can really set the tone for your brand, and as you know—a picture speaks a thousand words. We always recommend a series of photos for our clients including headshots and candid working photos that help make the work you do feel real (especially if you are a consultant, educator, or coach), styled shoots for products or services, and conceptual or environmental images to help illustrate brand stories or style beyond the literal. We recommend hiring a photographer once a year for a branded shoot—including updated headshots and supplementing with stock photography that is treated with your brand standards in the interim.


Once you’ve been able to take stock of all the places your brand shows up, it’s time to audit and assess what needs to be updated to reflect your most current brand standards and identity. I recommend prioritizing the entry point for a customer and using their next steps as a map to determine what needs your attention next.

For example, if you are selling an educational course and are running a Facebook ad campaign, the ads will be the first thing your customer sees. Those ads need to make an impression that is consistent and cohesive with what they’ll see next—which is probably a landing page to your course or your website. From there, they may sign up for your newsletter or a series of free training to learn more.

Or perhaps you are a leadership coach who is giving a talk at a conference. Your slides, your talk, and your personal style will make the first impression for your brand. From there, your audience may try to find you on Twitter or Instagram so they can tag you with quotes from your speech. Then, they may buy your book or sign up for your newsletter.

The experience your customer is having is a road map that will show you which stops or turns your customer can take next. You’ll want to be sure you always know which direction they’re headed so there are no brand disconnects or confusion along the way.


Okay, so by now you’ve assessed and audited all the places your brand lives, and you know how and where your potential customer is engaging with your brand along the way. Now it’s time to make sure all the pieces look consistent and cohesive with your brand platform and with each other.

My best recommendation is to hire a graphic designer and copywriter—ideally the person or team who helped you establish your brand in the first place—to implement your brand platform on all the pieces and places your brand shows up. If it’s the person who initially created your brand, you can trust them to make decisions on the fly when it comes to how your brand is applied across different platforms. If you’re working with a freelance designer or copywriter, you may need to give them more direction until they’re more familiar with the look, feel, and tone of your brand.

When you’re working with a designer and / or writer, the more you can batch your projects together, the more efficient you can be with your budget and time—though this means you’ll need to be more organized with your marketing efforts. However, if you develop an ongoing relationship with a designer or have someone on retainer, you can throw projects their way as they come. It really just depends on your needs and style.

Now the DIY-control-freak in me wants to tell you that you can learn to do it yourself, but I’ve seen too many people butcher their beautiful brand by trying to become a graphic designer instead of focusing on their core genius. It might be a little bit of an investment to hire help, but I promise it will save you money in the long run.

branding checklist worksheet


The point of this worksheet is to help you assess and audit all the places your brand exists. It’s for you to use however you like, but I recommend:

  • Cross out anything that is not applicable to your brand
  • Highlight or circle any high-traffic touch points
  • Check the boxes to the left after you’ve checked in on those parts of your brand. That check in might be a series of questions including but not limited to:
    • Which tactics have the most impact on my business?
    • Is this consistent?
    • Could I systemize this?
    • Can I delegate this?
    • Where are there disconnects or inconsistencies?
    • What’s working well? What do I like about this?
  • Use the space to the right to make notes on what needs to be updated or refined

You can also use this worksheet to help you decide which tactics you can add or omit from your brand and even use it as a checklist to know what you need to delegate.


7 Ways to Brand You + What You Do for Creative Business Owners

how to brand yourself

Branding can mean a lot of different things – for us, it’s the foundation of your business. It’s how you blend who you are into the work you do and want to be known for. It’s attracting dream customers by sharing your expertise. It’s having a creative process that you and your customers can rely on. Below are seven ways you can brand you and the work you do. These are excerpts from our 50-page eBook available for free.

DOWNLOAD THE FREE EBOOK for tips, exercises, scripts, and worksheets

7 ways to establish your personal brand

1. Get clear on what you want to be known for

The word “expert” might conjure up out-of-reach ideals – speaking at a TED talk, impressive certifications, credentials, and awards, never ever ever working from your kitchen table in yoga pants and surrounded by empty mugs. But over here, we believe branding yourself as an expert begins with getting clear on what you want to be known for.

how ot brand yourself

If you’re only branding yourself as a service-for-hire, then you’re only sharing half the picture of the creative expert you are (or want to become).

2. Create the work you actually want to be doing

If you could only sell one thing, what would it be? If you could stop selling one thing, what would you stop? You may offer lots of ways to hire or buy you. However, if you keep selling the stuff that you think will get you hired, but doesn’t exactly float your own creative boat, you could be setting yourself up to create a boring, unfulfilling day job of your own making—except now you have no one to blame but the boss.

3. Narrow in on your dream client

Imagine your dream client. They may be someone you’ve worked with in the past - or just the type you’d like to work with in the future. How real can you make them? The more specific you can get, the more you can narrow in on your tribe, and the more “psychic” you’ll feel when working with their needs and wants.

What job does your dream client work?
What are some of their personality traits and quirks?
What are they stressed out about? What worries them or keeps them stuck?
What are they proud of?
Who do they trust?
What do they value?
How does your work help them? What problem do you solve for them?

4. Define your style and point-of-view

Your process is what’s going to reassure your client they’ll get great work and a great experience. Your process is what gets you the collaborative input you need from your client. Of course, your work is created for them. But as you start sharing more of the work you really love, you’ll attract attention for your aesthetic or approach. Why not own that style of yours and become known for it?

You don’t have to be a creative chameleon, erasing all trace of your own style or point of view, to create, advise, guide, and make – for others.

5. Let your clients in on your process

There comes a point in a ‘hire me’ conversation where you shift from the sparkly and inspiring creative that attracted your dream clients in the first place to the expert who simply explains what you do. How do you ‘close the deal’ and set the stage for working together, without feeling awkward or sounding salesy? YOU SHARE YOUR STEPS.

When you stick to your process, you stay in the driver’s seat – with the flexibility to collaborate and create together with your client along the way.

6. Don’t forget to tell them what they actually get

So, obviously, we love process. We love getting hired for a complete “package,” not just a la carte design pieces. We love helping other designers go from order takers to experts who guide the client engagement. And we love helping coaches and consultants better express the journey they are going to take their clients on, so they trust them from the get-go. But just because you have a process doesn’t mean you aren’t giving your clients concrete deliverables. They get real “stuff.” Don’t forget to tell them what they get.

Don’t undersell what you bring to the table as a smart, strategic, authenticity-seeking creative. But beware of overcomplicating or over-proving your expertise, your specialty, or your steps – with too much talk and not enough show.

7. Blend you into what you do

A personal brand is your outer layer. So yeah, it’s your work style, but it's also your personal style – and even more than that, it’s your voice. It gives clients (and readers) a promise of the layers underneath. Your personal brand is one of the best ways to build your business as a creative expert who shares what they know with others, so they want to learn more – and hire you!

Express your personality in business

Expressing your personality + your deeper purpose will give you the freedom to grow into what’s next for you.

Want to learn more? In our free eBook we tell you how to take these 7 ways of branding yourself as a creative expert in conversations and on your website.

DOWNLOAD THE FREE EBOOK for tips, exercises, scripts, and worksheets


My Secret to Learning New Things as a Business Owner | Braid Creative

continued learning for business owners

Learning new things is hard. I’m not sure if it’s the lack of time that comes with adulting or a classic case of “mom brain,” but my attention span for formal education isn’t what it once was. As a creative professional and entrepreneur, I’m encountering a new challenge or decision that expands my capacity for growth every single day – I feel like I’ve practically earned a degree in business by building one! But there are times when I know I need to learn new skills or concepts in order to take my work and life to the next level in a more focused and concentrated way. So today I want to tell you my techniques and secrets for learning new things as someone who is short on both time and brain space.

techniques for learning new things


I recently invested $2,000 dollars in an online course that I wasn’t doing. Every time I sat down to my laptop to tackle my studies, I found myself instead checking email or tackling my to-do list. So I finally downloaded the audio files from the course to my phone and listened to the content while on a walk. Creative masterminds like Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg are known for holding meetings and brainstorming sessions while walking. Just try it for yourself! Take a walk while you’re listening to an audio book, a podcast, or even an online course. In fact, when I realized this was the easiest way to learn something new, I recorded audio files for my own branding ecourse students! Pro-tip: be sure to open a text file on your smartphone for jotting notes as you go!


My next biggest trick to learning as I go, is to actually implement what I’m learning as I go. For example, I recently wanted to know more about Facebook ads. I read through the thorough coursework (by Claire Pelletreau for anyone who’s wanting to learn more!), but hit a standstill when the content became technical. I realized that I would learn better by implementing a campaign in real time as I worked through the course. Another example is when I took an in-depth course in copywriting. Instead of just reading through the concepts, I practiced what I was learning by actually writing a newsletter and sales page as I went.


Maybe you’re reading articles like this as you’re tackling your inbox. Maybe you’re listening to podcasts or watching informational YouTube videos in between meetings. Or maybe you’ve got a business book on your nightstand table. You don’t necessarily need to go back to school to get a masters degree to learn new things (more power to you if you have it in you to do that!). You’re probably learning more than you’re giving yourself credit for. So my final technique for learning new things is simply to acknowledge what I’m learning everyday by sharing new ideas with my business partners or creative peers or even just writing down “three things I’ve learned this week” in my trusty notebook. Pro-tip: creating content and teaching others what you’re learning can be a great way to solidify new concepts and skills.

Learn through teaching for creative entrepreneurs




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