Staying “on brand” with your social media, your blogs, your emails, and everything else can be tricky. A brand’s visual identity is usually narrowed down to a handful of colors and one or two typefaces and can start to feel restrictive when you’re posting day after day — sometimes multiple times per day. But you don’t have to be locked into using the same colors and typefaces every time you post. Here’s how to stay on brand without getting repetitive.
Even if a brand’s visual identity has several colors, we can often get stuck in a pattern of using only two or three of those colors over and over again. You don’t have to get stuck using the same colors! Your brand’s colors create a certain vibe. My mix of purple and mints is cool, relaxing, and creative, so I look for graphics that reflect that. They don’t necessarily have to have the same shade of purple and mint. Below is a selection of graphics I have used in the past that feature colors like yellow and pink. They aren’t a part of my brand colors, but the overall mix reflects the handcrafted idea behind my brand.
Your Brand’s “Vibe”
The use of colors that complement your brand’s colors leads right into this next tip: choosing and creating graphics that reflect your brand’s “vibe”. My vibe is handmade, funky, nerdy, and creative. Maybe yours is high-end, luxurious, and expensive. If that is the case, then use images that reflect that, such as bright white, monochromatic images, images featuring metallics, or minimalistic images. Images don’t have to exactly match your colors or previously used images in order to accurately reflect your brand.
For clarity’s sake, visual identities typically stick to two main typefaces — three if we’re stretching it. One is used for display purposes and can be any kind of display typeface — script, decorative, etc. The other’s purpose is strictly readability. This is the typeface used for the body copy of your website, for example; anywhere that requires a large amount of text to be legible to a broad spectrum of users. While you shouldn’t use too many different typefaces in one particular setting, it’s okay to experiment with your social media graphics or the like. Because the amount of text is limited, it is easier to create readable graphics with interesting typefaces.
If you can, using a typeface with multiple styles can add a lot of versatility to your posts. Also remember that changing font weights and using bold or italics can change things up without going too far off brand.
This is the one area that should never change! Stay true to the voice of your brand when writing social media posts, blogs, or emails. If you generally write professionally and properly, don’t stray from that. If you drop f-bombs like they’re going out style, drop away! The voice in which you write for your business needs to stay consistent across your platforms and communications. Doing otherwise will lead to a major identity crisis.
It can be daunting to stay “on brand” while not getting bored or boring your audience. But staying on brand doesn’t have to be a rigid regime, especially if your visual identity is one you love!