One of the cool things about building a business is that nothing ever stands still. There is always something you can be working on, and whether it’s shifting your goals, learning something new or making incremental changes to your brand, your business is always in flux. But, in the hustle and bustle of tweaking this and refining that, you might lose sight of how all those small actions add up into a big shift—and, all of the sudden, you’ve got a brand that looks different depending on where you’re looking. So today, we wanted to help you keep your branding consistent with the help of expert Kaleigh Wiese. Read on to learn how to do a brand audit and figure out if it’s time for you to do one yourself.
Kaleigh is a visual brand strategist and graphic designer. She is the Owner of Meldeen where she designs luxury wedding brands and stationery.
What is a brand audit and why you should do one
The word “audit” might be scary, but we promise this is anything but! A brand audit is really just a review of your brand: identifying where it is, how it is being presented, and whether or not it is sending the right messages to your potential couples. They are important to do on a yearly basis because it’s very likely you’ve made changes to something about your branding over the past year (think: website, colors, logo, voice, etc.) and taking the time to review it all helps you build a consistent brand with a strong (and unique) point of view.
“In the busyness of the current state of our industry, it’s important you have a pulse on your brand. Doing a brand audit and looking at your business with a fresh perspective (and your ideal client in mind) is critical. Spend 30 minutes this month with a cup of coffee or glass of wine and audit your brand because it will help you look your best for your next season of couples.”
Pro-tip: Did you know you should be doing an audit of your website every year too? Here is a website review checklist to make it easy.
Things to do and look at during your audit
Reviewing your brand can be something you invest 30 minutes in or 3 hours. And, depending on how established your brand is as well as how many places it is displayed, you can decide to make it a quick task or a full-on deep dive. Regardless of the length of time you block your calendar for, there are some fundamental things you should be looking at. Here is a brand audit checklist to get you started:
- Make a list of all the places you have profiles and/or your brand is displayed. This can be on and off the internet (think: websites, profiles, business cards, proposal templates, etc.). Store this list somewhere it is easy to access and get in the habit of updating it as you might start new accounts
- Create a folder on your computer or in the cloud with the proper sized logos that can (and should) be used. You can do the same with headshots, images, etc.
- Review all of the spots on your brand list to make sure your logo, colors, fonts, images, etc. are being used consistently
- Read through your bios and copy and ask yourself, “Is my brand voice consistent?” If not, make the necessary updates
- Look at your Storefronts; do the images in your portfolio need to be updated? Does your logo need to be? Is your description still accurate? Make any necessary updates
Pro-tip: Learn how to create brand guidelines to help make sure your brand is always being used consistently.
Kaleigh’s brand audit advice
Getting excited to start your own review? Here is more expert advice from Kaleigh to make sure you’ve covered all of your bases.
- Make sure your website is working. Do the pages of your website load properly? Do they showcase your offerings? Does your website talk about your team?
- Check for dead ends. Click on every button and link on your website, social media accounts, and other profiles on the internet. Look for anything that is out of date, broken or takes you somewhere it shouldn’t
- Be sure you look like the same business. It takes 5-7 times for someone to see our logos, brand colors, and style to feel familiar with us. Check all of your digital and printed materials and make sure you are presenting your brand consistently everywhere you are using it
Your brand is very often the first thing newly engaged couples interact with, so it’s important that yours is making the impression you want! After you’ve completed your audit, be sure to take a step back and think about things like your brand archetypes before you make any major changes to your brand strategy.
Photo Credit: Insta_Photos/Shutterstock.com