Just Everything You Need to Know About Branding Your Small Business or Blog

by
LAURYN

vistaprint branding

BRANDING.

Quite possibly one of my favorite things on the planet to talk about. If I wasn’t a content creator, I would most definitely be a branding consultant. There’s nothing I love more than a good brand that’s cohesive, clear & purposeful.

When I first started The Skinny Confidential, I remember thinking I didn’t just want to build a blog, I wanted to build a brand with a strong foundation. I’m always looking for strategic, creative angles for sending my message into the universe with branding.

For instance- quick story: 2 years ago I got a popsocket & I thought how cool would it be if you could have an interactive business card. So with a graphic designer, we created a business card that fit around a branded popsocket. It had all my info like my social handles & email, & on the back was my Snapchat code. Here we are, 2 years later, still giving them out as business cards, & people LOVE them.

Finding interactive ways to showcase your brand can be very powerful. Within the digital space, there are so many different ways to be authentic, crafty, & original.

In fact, I enjoy branding so much that I created a company with Erica of Fashionlush called Blog-doo, where we help content creators create logos, mood boards & blogs in a very pretty fashion ( if I do say so myself ).

Recently I started to use Vistaprint. For those of you unfamiliar with Vistaprint, it’s a place where you can get LITERALLY any marketing or office supplies you want branded & customized. It’s been a game changer when it comes to my new office space AKA TSC Dreamhouse. We have door hangers, postcards, hats & t-shirts, all with a very cool, millennial, hip feel.

Not only have we been able to create a ton of different pieces with Vistaprint, we’ve also been able to do it on our own terms. We are able to use our own graphic designers so fonts, logos & pictures all go with my aesthetic. We upload them to Vistaprint’s platform & get them in literally a week.

This is amazing for your brand, or to just get your team excited about the company they work for. It’s so exciting to see The Skinny Confidential team rock up to the office in a hot pink visor with my brand’s name on it, or see a reader open a package that has a custom hand-written postcard from me thanking them for their support. I really believe these tiny details make a huge difference & I feel like this kind of branding & customization is very Kris Jenner-esque.

So with that, let’s talk about 5 fun ways you can brand the EFF out of your office with Vistaprint…

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The Skinny Confidential Guide to Branding Your Office:

Business Cards (duh) & Postcards:

Biz cards are so obvious, but let’s take it a step further. It’s so important to be super inclusive of your team & they want to be proud of what they do. So for them to have their own business cards with their handles & emails on them is a must for me. Each person on my team has their own business card in a lucite holder on their desk. We decided to design our business cards super Barbie & cheeky because our new office is very pink everything so it just made sense. You should also know that the ones from Vistaprint slide into your wallet super easy too. Like they really glide in & don’t catch.

As for the postcards- they’re for the audience. I love to send out giveaways & goodies & surprise TSC readers with presents. So to have a branded postcard where I can hand write a special note to add to each package is really special. We have TSC tissue paper & wrapping paper too because I think every detail matters, down to the presentation & unwrapping. ( So many of you have shared your presents on Instagram & I’m eternally grateful. It gets me so excited ).

Sidenote: if you want a package from me, tell me one of your best branding tips below & I’ll send a very special package to one of you!

Door Hangers:

This is something that has been so fun around the office. We had these door hangers made with a pic of me sleeping with my mouth open with a pink background. They’re all over the doors of the office & it’s just a funny way to brighten the office. People love it. We also got these big stickers that say The Skinny Confidential & we decided to go with a black & white checkered background for these. Again, the little details make all the difference. They’re also a really fun thing to giveaway.

Notepads & Pens:

But OF COURSE! Everyone needs notepads & pens. I am a fan of handwriting things- there’s something about it that tells my brain to get busy. These are both branded with everything TSC. You should know we also did postcards so when we send out giveaways or TSC merch, the receiver gets a nice note that is signed by me. Added touches are everything. And I can also tell you that all of the team has the notebooks on their desk with their pen ( that writes like a dream ) out on display. Tiny details like this brighten up the office & make the culture of the office a FUN environment. Say goodbye to grey & brown- we’re getting flirty over here! ( FUNNY NOTE: even my friend, Westin, who works with us loves the notebook- he has 3. LOLZ- it’s so cute ).

T-shirts & Hats:

This one is obvious, but the reason I want to talk about it is it’s very millennial. Millennials love swag. You guys know I love to protect my face from the sun & so does my time so to have visors & hats is a MUST. & who doesn’t want a fun t-shirt.

We didn’t want some boring t-shirt though, we wanted something on the pulse & relevant. It’s funny, black with a pop of pink & has the same pic of me as the door hangers- you know, catching flies. You could even put your Instagram handle on the back of it.

Mouse Pads:

Here is another detail that makes all the difference…mouse pads. This is probably one of the cuter things we did with Vistaprint.com. The whole team has purple or pink mouse pads that say The Skinny Confidential on them. The mouse pads at Vistaprint are super good quality, too. They look SO CUTE WITH THE PINK MOUSES WE HAVE OMIGOD. I love including the whole team in things like this & a mouse pad is something everyone wants & needs. It makes the desk space look VIBEY.

5 More Branding TSC Hot Tips

♡ A brand is not what you say it is, it’s what the consumer says it is. It’s the emotional reaction individuals feel when they see your brand. LISTEN to your audience.

♡ Branding has nothing to do with data, numbers, & excel sheets. Nothing at all. It’s about the people who experience the brand- not the numbers. Quit it with the data, look to the people.

♡ A typical design has four goals: to identify, inform, entertain, or persuade. However when it comes to branding, there is a fifth: to differentiate. THIS COMES DOWN TO STRATEGY. Why do you like Nike over other shoe companies? Because Nike has done an incredible job of differentiating its brand.

♡ Brands can become small tribes if they’re done right. YOUR VIBE ATTRACTS YOUR TRIBE. Community is key.

♡ It takes a village to build a brand- take ego out of it. Not one person can develop a powerful, lasting brand without a strong team of people around the brand’s message. Collaboration is incredibly important- & of course, engagement.

So there you have it.

Everything you need to know about branding & some really festive, fun ways to pimp out your office. You never know who will pop into your office & some swag.

Highly recommend Vistaprint.com if you’re looking for affordable, chic options for your brand.

Hope you’re all having an amazingly productive Wednesday. And of course, share your brand, small business or blog below so everyone can stalk you.

Chat soon, lauryn x

+ scope my calendar tips here & stalk this post on how to set up a blogger’s desk. 

++ this post is in collaboration with Vistaprint. as always, all opinions are my own.

+++ #WorkingWithVistaprint #VISTAPRINTxTSC #VISTAPRINTxBLOGDOO @vistaprint

++++ COUPON CODE: THESKINNYCONFIDENTIAL1 – 50% off 1 item (expires on 9/26)

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  1. AvatarChristina

    Great post!! I’m a sucker for branding as well 😄 I just love it when I see something and immediately know the brand, from the colours/style etc! Another great example for me would be branded tote bags- you can always use them when you go shopping, and the always remind you of the brand 🙂

    Reply
  2. AvatarJade

    I love all these tips! To take it from a different angle, I would say one of my brand tips is to look to the people representing the brand and not just the materials or graphics. Look at the ‘handler’ of the brand and the handler is every single person on the team. Do they walk the walk and talk the talk? Do they live and believe in the brand? This is something that the consumer will be able to tell in the first couple minutes of interaction. If the handlers are not legit, this will impact the consumer’s perception of the brand itself.

    Keep these coming – I can’t wait to experience more content from you!

    JD

    Reply
  3. AvatarJustine michael

    Honestly, I am not much of a “brander” myself, but I so deeply appreciate the fuck out of someone that executes it so well! Consistency is key, and back from when I started following you about two or so years ago, you have been so effing consistent! Love, love, love the way you work your brand and incorporate it into ALL aspects of your everyday life. Would LOVE to rep your brand any day of the week 🙌. Thanks for always keepin it real.

    Reply
  4. AvatarJordan

    I think a good way to brand is to send multiples for people to share with friends. I’m also partial to a funky sticker on poles or bar bathrooms- maybe strategically placed by the fiber powders in Whole Foods;)

    Reply
  5. AvatarCassie

    Hi Lauryn! I absolutely loved this post! Branding is so important and it’s something that every single blogger, entrepreneur, business, etc. needs to put more emphasis on. One of my favorite branding tips is to figure out what sets your brand apart from others or makes you different and own that! With so many bloggers having the same Instagram aesthetic and look, you need to differentiate yourself from the rest, so that your brand will stand out and be remembered!

    Reply
  6. AvatarLily Thaler

    LOVE this branding post!! I run an organization on my college campus and one small thing I’ve found to be really game changing is making sure ALL of our internal docs and spreadsheets are formatted with our brand logo, fonts, and colors. It makes everything feel more intentional and purposeful when we’re reminded of what we’re working toward by looking at our branding as we work.

    Reply
  7. AvatarMeredith

    Love branding. I run a shop that sells and services forestry and line clearing equipment. When a piece of equipment gets purchased, I give the driver a koozie with our logo on it, a cold Red Bull and a bag with waters and snacks for their drive. The people in charge are always so impressed that we take care of their employees, that they tell everyone in their office and their competition. My next plan is to make sure that no set of keys (for a repair or a sale) leaves our office without a keychain that has our logo / name / number. That way if they’re in a bind, they have our information right there vs Googling it.

    Reply
  8. AvatarChristina

    I am obsessed with your branding!! You can always recognize it straight away, and it is so unique 😊 Chic branding always leads me to buying the products so I can display them at home, such as Elemis!
    One thing I always love is when a brand is giving away those big-ass mugs for tea, that way I’m always reminded of it in a chill setting 😊

    Reply
  9. AvatarRebecca

    Wow this article is everything I got so many good ideas for branding, marketing and standing out from everything to aesthetic to just how to really stand out like a sore thumb to compete. I’m learning so so much about branding from you from everything you do! I’m starting to realise my stuff is so boring and just doesn’t standout I’m so slowly delevoping it as I’m trust starting but so much food for thought to be a trail bailser

    Reply
  10. AvatarChristina

    Great post!! I’m a sucker for branding as well 😄 I just love it when I see something and immediately know the brand, from the colours/style etc! Another great example for me would be branded tote bags- you can always use them when you go shopping, and the always remind you of the brand 🙂

    Reply
  11. AvatarAllison

    Branding is SO important and such a fun topic and activity! You give the best advice when it comes to branding- so inspiring! I think a fun way to brand is maybe like a throw pillow, a chic keychain, scrunchies, boy shorts/booty pant undies. So much fun! You are a lifestyle!!!

    Reply
  12. AvatarSammy massyn

    Ok, LOVE this post! Yes! Thank you🙌🏼🙌🏼 You make reading up on branding fun, interesting and just straight up fashionable AF. I currently work in the foodservice industry and what the owner told me one day was that he’d learnt to brand EVERYTHING! From food trays, to paper liners to cutlery bags to condiment dispensers.. literally everything (on top of the normal uniforms, banners etc) but people will walk past our locations and recognize our brand logo and be like “oh yeah that’s that good lemonade!” And come in buy not just lemonade, but food too. It’s amazing to see. Thank you for this article. Forreals. 💓

    Reply