Why you need brand guidelines before you launch your website
This blog post reveals how to create a website that positions you as an expert and leader in your field. You'll learn why brand guidelines are the most essential thing you need before you design and launch your website.
You like the idea of being an expert and leader in your field... but there's one big problem. When someone Google's you, nothing really comes up.
You wish you could have a website that showcases your expertise, your work and how amazing you are, but you don't know how to create a website or even where to start.
That's okay, because in today's blog post I'm going to demystify what you need to make a website.
A few weeks ago, I shared a video on how to create a professional looking website in 7 easy steps without needing any coding skills whatsoever. To watch this, click here.
Today I'm diving deep on one of the steps, which is that you need to create brand guideline before you even think about building your website.
In order to truly build your profile as an expert and leader in your field and attract the work opportunities you want, you must first consciously create your brand. Your brand reflects who you are, what you do, what you're an expert at, what makes you different and why people should work with you. Creating brand guidelines enables you to know exactly what your website should look like and what your content needs to do.
Without brand guidelines, you're creating your website in the dark. It's sort of like going to a shooting range, knowing there's a target you need to hit but because you can't see where your target is, you have no chance of hitting your target.
Brand guidelines give you the guidelines you need to follow to create a professional brand that hits the nail on the head and gets you the work opportunities you're looking for.
Here are 7 things that'll help you create your brand guidelines.
#1 - Define your mission
If you want your work to make a positive impact in the world, have a mission.
There are few things more soul destroying than becoming an expert and leader in something that doesn't matter or makes a difference. A part of you will crave the joy and meaning that comes from doing something that works and makes a difference to someone.
So take a moment to first reflect on why you work and what impact you want to make. A great book to help you figure this out is Simon Sinek, Start with Why.
#2 - Bring out your personality
Branding is what people say about you when you're not in the room. It's a reflection of their first impressions of you and their experience of getting to know you after working with you.
Part of what influences people's perception of you is your personality. Are you bubbly, quiet, shrewd, confident, strong, resilient, funny or intellectual?
Think about the key words that reflect your personality and integrate this into your brand and website. Use your personality to influence your tone of voice and how you communicate on your website. You can also use it to help you choose the best fonts, colours and images to use on your website.
#3 - Get clear on who you're making the website for
Making a website isn't for you. It's for the person you're writing to and want to connect with.
Knowing who you're making the website for is essential. It helps you create your website for the people you would ideally love to have visit your website and helps you know exactly what content you need to write on your website so it's relevant for them.
#4 - Identify how you want people to feel when they work with you
When you work with people, how do you want them feel?
This is an important question, because in order to make people feel the way you hope they'll feel, you need to know specifically what emotion and experience you want to leave them with.
Knowing this helps you know how to write content for your website that leaves people feeling goosebumps and helps people make the change you're hoping to inspire them to make.
#5 - Create a logo
A logo is visual representation of your brand name. Some companies use icons like the Nike tick or the Jaguar.
And while this may seem only necessary for companies, it's just as necessary for you. The good news is, creating one is really simple as a professional.
The best and easiest logos a professional can make is one that has wordmark style. This means having a logo that spells out your name.
For example, when you look at fashion brands like Victoria Beckham, Dior or Louis Vuitton, their logos have a wordmark style. It's typed using one font and though it's so simple, it looks very professional, classic and timeless.
You can do this too by picking a font for your logo and simply typing out your name in BIG letters.
If you'd like something more creative but don't know where to start, click here to watch my video on how to create an iconic logo.
#6 - Choose 2 fonts
Now comes the most fun part. Picking 2 fonts. One for your headings and titles, and another for your blog content.
Based on all the steps above, pick a font that you think best reflects your brand. To use the font simply download the file. When you've chosen the platform you're going to use to build and host your website, like Wix or Squarespace or Wordpress, go to the design section and upload your font file.
Here's a list of places you can get inspiration from:
Here's a list of places you can get fonts:
Adobe Typekit: https://typekit.com/
#7 - Choose a colour scheme
Now it's time to pick colours for your brand and website.
It's important you pick colours that reflect your brand. People's perception of you is often influenced by the colours you've chosen.
Before you pick your favourite colours or pick any random colour you think looks good, I encourage you to read this blog post on how to pick the right colours for your brand. Click here to read the blog post.
Once you learn the psychology of colour, you'll be able to strategically choose the best 2 to 5 colours for your brand and website.
And that's it!
If you'd like to easily and quickly create your brand, I invite you to:
Grab the create your brand workbook: http://bit.ly/createyourbrandworkbook
Book your Create your Brand Consultation: http://bit.ly/createyourbrandconsultation
Either of these will help you create a brand that attracts the work opportunities you want within a matter of hours. No more not knowing what to do or how to do it.
I'd love to know what you think. What's one thing you're excited to do before you create your website? Leave a comment below. My blog is read by thousands of readers and your comment could make a difference in someone else's life.