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    Create a mood board to clarify your brand

    By Susan Goodwin

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    Despite not always wanting to admit it, as creatives who sell our work or creative services, we 'are' our brands. And in the online space, the visual impact of your brand matters more now than ever before. Having a strong cohesive look to everything from your website and social media accounts, to your email marketing and printed promotional pieces, has become increasingly important. 

    For this reason, it's worth regularly standing back to have a look at the elements of your brand and how they are represented visually, and if that representation accurately reflects who you are and what you do.

    Ask yourself: Do they all look like they came from one place? Or are they completely varied and share none of the same visual clues? Do they tell a story or show you something you want to buy or be a part of?

    If your communications are leaving you feeling less than stellar about your brand, then don't become disheartened. Like any marketing exercise, it simply might be time for you to start reigning in your ideas, and focus.  One way this can be achieved is ti create a mood board for your brand.

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    A mood board will create a visual look for your brand so that each time you need to take a photo, use a font, or create a marketing piece you can draw inspiration from the same source material. This way, instead of having a disjointed message, you will be providing a strong clear visual that backs up the presence of your brand.

    Ideally, your mood board should:

    • be a collection of images that give you inspiration.
    • have images that show the ideals of your brand.
    • showcase your aesthetic.
    • depict colours, fonts, and styles of imagery that work together and that provide a practical resource you can refer to when creating communications.

    But, most importantly, every time you look at your mood board it should make you feel inspired, it should remind you of your goals and all the things you want to achieve in your creative business.

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    In terms of actually creating a mood board, there are many options. Your mood board can be virtual, using a platform like Pinterest; you could create one using Illustrator or Photoshop; or you could make yourself a coffee, grab a stack of magazines and get to cutting and assemble one on a cork board for above your desk (or if you're really pressed for space, just take over the refrigerator door!).

    Mood boards are fun to make and a constant source of inspiration. And remember, they can change. As your brands grows you can add or subtract your source imagery. It won’t stop you from being spontaneous and taking a perfect Instagram image on the spur of the moment, but it might just help to bring your brand and business intentions into focus and create a better visual language.

    {Image credits: Screenshot from our Pinterest page; other images by Susan.}

    Susan Goodwin is the designer, sewer and creator of Rocket Fuel, ensuring you are decked out in style while cycling. Read her blog or follow her on Twitter @rocketfuelstyle.

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    Posted by: Susan
    Categories: Advice and Tips, Growing a Business, Marketing and Social Media Basics, Starting a Business | Comments Off on Create a mood board to clarify your brand

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