A huge part of my process when I’m working with clients on their brands is the brand discovery stage. It seems like it would be more productive to save time with the research and just start designing, however, I would always recommend doing a bit of brand discovery first, especially if you’re designing for yourself.
For me, brand research consists of looking into a few different areas in your business:
Your Brand Values
But why is it so important to go through these things before you jump into Photoshop?
Gives direction and a point of reference for the design
When you go through a brand discovery session, you can write everything you find down in a worksheet or brainstorm and use this to refer to when you are actually designing to make sure everything you create is fitting with your business and brand values. This is so important for not being distracted from the endpoint which is designing something which perfectly encapsulates your brand.
More time researching means less time designing
The more time you spend researching and discovering your brand values, the less time you have to spend going back and forth with different design concepts. You will have such a strong vision of your brand by the time you are done that you will be able to tell straight away what works and what doesn’t. Without this part of the process, you can easily spend hours working on concepts which just don’t work but you don’t know why.
You want to create designs with meaning, not just ‘pretty’ design
There isn’t much point in putting all this time into creating and promoting a design which doesn’t have any strategy or meaning behind it. It’s very unlikely that you will end up with logos and designs which are a good fit for your brand if you haven’t done this discovery first. I’m sure you will end up with something beautiful but without the purpose, you will most likely end up wanting to change things after a few months.
Less likely to fall into the trap of trend based design
When you look for visual inspiration when designing, you will come across lots of trend based design. This is perfectly fine if the design is a good fit for your business, but you’ll never know if you don’t do the brand discovery first. You don’t want to fall into a trap of designing something that looks great and trendy now but won’t last longer than a few months and doesn’t really fit in with what you do.
Gives you clarity and confidence in your own business
If you’ve never done a brand discovery exercise before, it can be really eye-opening and help you to see how amazing what you are doing actually is! You will find a refreshed sense of clarity which will not just help with designing your branding but also other areas of your business. Being really clear on your own message can be so powerful and you can never realise unless you do it.
I hope this has helped you realise how much of a difference brand discovery can make when it comes to creating purposeful designs for your business. If you’d like to your hands on a brand discovery worksheet to use, and get access to my FREE Create Your Own Mood Board email course. Head over here to sign up and get involved!
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