Branding For Startups - Paper Lime Creative
Branding For Startups
Write By: Katie Dooley

How Graphic Designers Help Establish a Strong Identity

Starting a new business is always exciting as you see your finished product on the shelves, either in a brick-and-mortar store or on a virtual shelf. The equivalent excitement for companies that provide services is working with those first few clients. Getting started brings a sense of pride.

It takes a magical combination of skill, vision, and tenacity to start a business—not to mention many sleepless nights and weekend work sessions. We believe your hard work should pay off, and one way to make that happen faster is to create a strong brand identity.

Your Brand Helps Grow Your Business

As your business takes off, it’s easy to think that getting a logo design and branding materials can wait. You might believe that you need to wait and achieve a certain milestone before making the investment. The reality is that having a strong brand identity from the start can help your business grow faster and help you establish a loyal clientele. Every entrepreneur who starts a business wants their company to succeed in the long run, and having a brand identity can help make that happen.

Overcoming Branding Challenges for Startups

As brand designers in Edmonton, we understand all too well the challenges startups face in getting their branding started. Here’s how to overcome those hurdles and make the most of branding for your business.

Challenge #1: Not Knowing Your Ideal Client

The best way to find and attract your dream customers is to know your ideal client well. Who are they? What is their demographic? What are their pain points, and how do you serve them? Knowing who you are talking to with your logo, brand story, and marketing efforts will make it easier to create a brand that represents your company and attracts the right clients.

When you’re just starting your business, it can be a struggle to narrow down who your ideal audience is. You likely have a sense of your target market, but with marketing, we want to be specific—really specific. In fact, when you market your business, it’s recommended that you have one person in mind. An Edmonton brand designer will have experience helping new businesses and startups get clear on their audience before starting the logo design process.

Challenge #2: Not Knowing What Branding Is or Why It Matters

Many new and experienced business owners find marketing and branding confusing. The simplest answer is that your brand is the image and personality of your business, while your marketing is how you reach out to customers and introduce yourself. Having a solid brand makes marketing easier.

Startup owners tend to ignore their branding in the initial phases of building their businesses because they don’t know what it includes or why it matters. Your brand image is much more than a logo and a slogan. It’s the identity of your company and the guide on how you reach your ideal audience. Establishing a strong brand image is critical to your success as a startup.

Challenge #3: Having Uncertainty on Cash Flow

A common challenge many new businesses face is the uncertainty of cash flow. You may have a great month with lots of sales and clients, followed by slower months. The more experience you have in your business, the more you’ll understand the natural ebbs and flows of your market and where you have opportunities to increase your sales. At the start, it can be stressful balancing the budget month to month without knowing where the clients will come from.

Your branding can help you attract repeat customers, improving your cash flow. Having a strong brand at the start gives you an edge because once a customer buys from you or a client is wowed by your services, they’ll have you in mind for future interactions. Having both your company name and a strong visual to remember you by (like your logo or a product label) increases the odds that your customers will return for more.

How to Create a Brand Image

Your brand image is how your customers and audience perceive your company. Part of the equation is your logo and brand. The other part is how you operate your business, including what you value, your mission, and how your customer interacts with your company. Having a cohesive brand identity makes you memorable.

Create a Memorable Logo

Your logo is an important part of your brand image. It’s your opportunity to stand out from the other companies in your industry with a visual that represents you and how you do things differently. A logo that is custom-designed for your business will be memorable because it fits the experience you deliver to clients and customers perfectly.

Write a Brand Story

Writing down the reason you’re in business and how you solve problems for your customers can help you focus on how you’re different from your competitors. The best brand stories are succinct and flow like a story, making it easy for you, your team, and your customers to understand.

Create Your Ideal Client Avatar

Once you’ve researched and narrowed down your target audience, the best way to use that data in your marketing is to create an Ideal Client Avatar (sometimes called an Ideal Customer Avatar or ICA). This means you take the details of your audience and highlight them in one fictional person. Using your first amazing client as your model can also work well for this purpose. When you have an ICA, you create and write your marketing materials as if talking to that one person because that’s who represents your market.

The Role of Graphic Designers in Creating Brand Identity

If any part of this process sounds complex or mysterious, it doesn’t have to be. You’re not expected to complete your logo design or branding materials on your own. That’s where graphic designers and branding experts are here to help. At Paper Lime Creative, we’re experts in branding in Edmonton. We help our clients craft brand identities through our Brand Mastermind Course. We use a collaborative approach to understand your unique business, develop your ICA, and generate the brand messaging you need to position yourself as a leader in your industry.

Looking for inspiration? You can browse our portfolio of brand identity examples to see how various entrepreneurs in different industries have set themselves apart from the competition.

Branding and Graphic Design in Edmonton

When you need branding expertise for your startup, hiring an Edmonton graphic designer at Paper Lime Creative will make the process fun and strategic. You’ll walk away with the materials and tools you need to use your brand in all your future marketing efforts. Book your consultation call and tell us about your branding needs—we’d love to hear about your business!