The Badassery brand is a HUGE part of our business. We get compliments on our branding all the time, but it didn’t happen overnight. We consistently evolved and refined it to become the on-point brand that you see today. Here’s five things we did to tighten it up.
1. Identify your brand pillars
If your logo, colors and voice are the muscles of your brand, your brand pillars are the skeleton that holds everything together and gives it strength. The pillars are the ideas, values, or common themes that are present in EVERY brand interaction. For example, Badassery Magazine’s brand pillars are:
- Showing True Badassery
- Having Fun
As you can see, our pillars are very similar to our mission. We are devoted to empowering female entrepreneurs to show their true badassery and providing them with a platform and community to get support, be visible and have fun doing it. Oh.. and wine.
When you identify your pillars, think about your mission and core values. What is most important for your audience to hear? How do you want them to feel?
2. Build a content library
Every post we create, whether for the blog or social media, is first typed into a Google doc then copied/pasted over to be published. Why? Doesn’t that seem like a waste of time? Well, no. It is actually saving time and creating consistency because we are keeping a library of content. With all of our posts on file, we can go back and steal repurpose bits and pieces of posts we’ve already used. This technique has many benefits. It saves time, give you content when you can’t think of anything to say, and helps keep your voice and message consistent.
When you are building your library, create a central folder you and your team can access. I recommend using descriptive titles to your docs so you can search and find things easily.
3. Templates. Templates. Templates.
For graphics, worksheets, newsletters, blog posts and even the magazine, we use design templates. And, the easiest way to create a template is to save a design, make a copy and modify the copy into the new version of your design. We make slight adjustments on the new version so they don’t all look exactly the same. We’ll do things like move positioning of the text around or change the filter on the graphic. But, the bones of the design are the same so the audience can tell each design represents the same brand.
When you are creating your brand templates, think about elements you want to show in every graphic and which elements you can change slightly to mix it up a bit.
4. Brand YESes
In addition to templates, we have a list of “Yes” elements for our brand. These include selfies, stock images of badass women, unicorns, glitter, and GIFs. We also include things like using bold and exciting verbiage, cursing (f-bombs and all), saying Badass a lot, and writing in a casual manner. We also CAPITALIZE words we want to emphasize and use emoji’s in our social posts.
When you are compiling your “Yes” list, think about things that make your brand stand out and will resonate with your audience. What sets you apart?
5. Brand NO-NOs
After identifying all the things we DO want to show with our brand, we’ve also identified things we NEVER show. These are the big NO-NOs. For us, these are unreadable fonts, using unlicensed (or stolen) images, plagiarizing someone else’s posts, ranting without having a constructive purpose behind it, and being a dick. These may all seem like no brainers to have on your NO-NO list, but I still see people doing all of these things on a daily basis. Drawing a line on what your brand stands for and doesn’t stand for is a big part of having a tight brand.
Each one of these little secrets we used to tighten our brand are actually part of the one big secret to branding – CONSISTENCY. For branding, consistency is everything. The more polished, streamlined and consistent your brand, the more memorable it is and the more people will recognize it.
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About the Author
Kathy Rasmussen is the Cofounder and Artistic Director of Badassery Magazine and Cohost of Badassery Podcast. She’s passionate about giving entrepreneurs the tools they need to follow their dreams and live a life of happiness and purpose.