Nothing beats a professionally designed brand identity – with your carefully crafted logo, custom images, clear voice, beautiful website, and everything right and proper you can awe instantly.
Except one thing.
Starting your business.
the most important thing when starting your business
Can you guess what it is?
No, it's not your amazing branding.
Nope, not your beautiful working space.
Not even your absolutely marvelous newsletter.
Yes, you've guessed it - it's the magic that happens, when you connect your incredible offerings with your amazing audience.
It's your first sell.
Now, that might sounds a bit self centered (to me it did at first), but it's not. You wish to create a business by serving & helping others. And this is how it starts.
Start your business first - connect with your audience, make your first sell, set your goals, and then worry about the perfect branding.
Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with starting with a polished brand.
But not if that will mean not starting at all. Or losing momentum, motivation and zest.
So, I say it's OK if you are a one woman show and want to start your small business small.
It's much more important to get out there, find your people and share your gifts with them, than to have that perfect logo. At least at first. You can (and you will) figure out the details along the way. At some point you will be able to hire help - copywriters, designers, online assistants, you name it.
But first - ignite your idea and connect, connect, connect.
"changing branding later is hard"
Yes, it is. No doubt about it. Changing your logo, colours and all your visuals when you have an established business is no picnic and not everybody will like your new brand (just google the new Instagram logo, everybody has an opinion about it)
But it is much harder to do any of this if you don't have a business at all, yes?
When your business starts to get momentum and you find that your DIY brand is no longer serving your customers, this is the time to think about rebranding.
Before that and you'll have no business.
After that and your brand is too well known to change easily.
And yet. I was inspired by Melyssa Griffin - she recently changed not just her visual identity, but also the name of her brand from The Nectar Collective to Melyssa Griffin. Now, I haven't seen any numbers or anything, but I know that this change will work for her, because she has built her entire business around her audience and not around herself - people will love her no matter how she calls her brilliant enterprise.
OK, enough said. If you have your business idea ready, go ahead and start it now! This is the sign you've been waiting for (I'm giving a lot of signs lately, maybe I should design one to go with my constant encouragements, what do you think?)
Just start and don't look back.
how to create a beautiful logo for your small business
Start by writing down the name of your business or blog on a blank piece of paper. You are creating just your logo today, so don't get overwhelmed by all the other elements of branding. Just start with the name and see where it goes from there.
Additionally, you might like to write a short description of your business – you are not that well known yet and introduction might be in order ;)
Here are three simple ways to design a logo for your small business and growing blog:
CREATE A SIMPLE FONT LOGO
There are sooo many gorgeous fonts out there, just pick one, and use it for your logo. Make sure you have the legal right to do so.
The good thing is that it's simple, you can start your blog right away!
The downside is that it's not very "branded". This means that it may lack instant recognition or somebody else might be using the same font for their logo. But if your name is not too common, chances are the same font-name combination won't pop up everywhere.
Make sure you use the full advantage of the font by using Adobe Illustrator Glyphs (Type > Glyphs)
For this Illustrator tutorial you will need Adobe Illustrator and your favourite fonts. Install them, open the programme and let's get creative!
STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS:
1. Open a new file
2. Write the name of your business
3. Pick a fancy font for it
4. Write down your business tag line
5. Pick a simple font for it
6. Pick colours (here are some girly + dreamy patterns)
7. Fix your design (Object > Expand)
8. Export your work as a transparent PNG or JPEG so you can use in your blog header and on your social media accounts (File > Export)
9. Continue rocking your awesome budding business :)
- The one I used is called The Painter by Aiyari
- I love the Creative Market script font collection
- If you are using a free font make sure to check it's 100% free and not just free for personal use. You can find my personal favourites here, here and here.
DESIGN A LOGO USING A LOGO KIT
If just your name is not enough, then turn your attention to the many logo kits out there. I created the Mandala Logo Creator for branding project like this in mind.
STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS:
2. Unpack and read the instructions.
3. Browse through the design elements and sketch some ideas.
4. Write the name of your business and your tag line in the programme (usually Adobe Illustrator) and start testing your ideas.
5. When your design is ready, pick your colours (here are some girly + dreamy patterns)
6. Fix your design (Object > Expand + Object > Expand Appearance)
7. Export your work as a transparent PNG or JPEG so you can use in your blog header and on your social media accounts (File > Export)
8. Continue rocking your awesome budding business :)
cREATE A LOGO Using your own handwriting
This is one of my favorite ways to brand anything (just look at my latest Instagram project). You can use your handwriting, lettering, brush lettering, calligraphy. Experiment with different pens and brushes and see, what works best for you.
I was going to make a video on that too, but then I remembered my absolutely favourite tutorial about digitising hand lettering by non other than seanwes:
and here are the results of all three methods:
In case you are wondering, this is LORELEI - Nordic Blog & Shop Wordpress theme by Ilgelo Design. Before I moved to Squarespace I used one of their themes for mindfulpixels.com and I loved it!
WHEN is it the right TIME TO HIRE A DESIGNER?
Sooner rather than later, but perhaps not too soon. Here is what I mean:
When your business is no longer just an idea in your head but a tiny empire you rule form your kitchen table, it's time to get your brand audited and uplifted by a designer.
You started well, gained confidence, established your name, made friends with your beautiful audience and started helping people through your gifts and offerings.
You've hatched your business.
Now it's time to let it fly.
Let's hear your branding story!
Do you have a DIY branding story? Did you hire a designer right away or did you started small?
Please, share your story in the comments below!
Thank you for reading, sharing and being here, my dearest!