Can you spot the mistake this business owner made? They have a cool product they make, that they want to monetize, so they decide to start a small business. They hire a friend to design their logo and website. They tell the designer what they like including their favorite colors to fonts that look cool. They even show them Pinterest boards, and the designer creates the final look. Did you spot the mistake yet? Keep reading to see what’s the biggest mistake that most small business owners make when they brand their company.

Before you start having things like logos, websites, social media graphics, or stationary designed for your small business, you should start by understanding your target audience. Let me say it louder for the folks in the back.

BEFORE you design any branding for your business, you should understand EXACTLY who your target audience is.

You need to be able to answer questions about your target audience like you would be able to answer about someone you’re dating.

I don’t mean the usual questions like:
  • Where are they from?
  • How old are they?
  • How many kids do they have?
  • What’s their education level?

These are the surface level questions that every business owner asks when they 

I mean take a deep dive into important questions like:
  • What do they do in their spare time?
  • What keeps them up at night?
  • What drives their purchasing decisions?

If you created any of your brand identity without considering all of the above questions, then chances are you are either undercharging for your business to keep the income coming in. Or you’re seeing traffic on your website, but sales have plateaued.

A common misconception about business branding is that you need to design something you like. Don’t get me wrong, the end product should exude the essence of your company. But your brand doesn’t exist to make you happy.

You have to approach branding design as your dream customer. What would they want you to say? How do they want to feel after buying your products or working with you? What colors would appeal to their tastes? What would make them feel like they could trust you? Or that you were a legitimate company?

Approach your branding from that perspective and you’ll have an easy time not only attracting your dream clients but also charging what you’re worth

What You Should Do First

Before you start trying to figure out your dream client on your own. I created a free resource to help you called the Dream Client Planner. It’s an editable PDF that walks you through all the questions you should be able to initially answer about your dream client. Keep in mind though, that if you worked with a brand strategist like me, you’d have to go through WAY more questions than this. It’s a great starting point. Fill out the form below to request your copy.

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