New Brand – What Next? 8 Steps to Rocking Your New Identity
I’m picturing this: you’ve found a designer, chosen the perfect one, hired them, been through the whole branding process, and at the end of the project an email has popped into your inbox. It’s telling you that you just have to click on a link to get all of your new brand assets. You’ve been sent folders full of all of the logos, colours, fonts, photos and other elements that make up your brand and you’re feeling a little overwhelmed. You’re thinking, “what on earth am I supposed to do with all of this stuff? How do I use it? What should I do next? How should I launch all of this?”
(Unless you work with me because I guide you through all of this!), these are all normal questions and you’re definitely not alone! But don’t panic! I’m going to take you through the 8 things that you should do when you receive your brand assets, so that you have a step-by-step process to follow and know exactly what comes next!
1. Download Your Assets
First things first, let’s download all of these assets and get them somewhere safe. How we do this will depend on how the files are sent to you in the first place.
If a folder is shared with you via Google Drive, you can right click the folder name and select “Add To My Drive.” This will add the shared folder to your drive so that you always have access to the latest version, and still allow it to be updated by the designer who shared it with you. This is great if your designer is likely to be adding items to that shared folder in the future. You can download Backup and Sync to sync these files to your computer, or simply download files directly from your Google Drive as needed.
With a shared Dropbox folder, the process is similar. Simply click the button in the top right of the screen that says “Add to Dropbox,” and you’ll be good to go! This will also keep you up to date with the latest version, and allow your designer to add or remove things in the future that need to be shared with you. You can download Dropbox onto your computer to sync files across devices, or simply download files directly from Dropbox as required.
Tools like WeTransfer will send you a link to download a ZIP file. These files aren’t in the cloud, so will have to be downloaded onto your device and unzipped to reveal the contents. (Click here if you need to know how to unzip files on a Windows and here for a Mac) Once the folder is open, you can either keep these on your computer, or upload them to Google Drive or Dropbox, whichever is your cloud storage method of choice. I recommend uploading them so that they are easily shared, can be accessed across devices, and are protected if you lose or damage your computer.
You may be sent files via email. Similarly to WeTransfer, these files will need to be downloaded onto your device and then uploaded to the cloud, either on Google Drive or Dropbox.
If you are delivered a USB of your files, these will need to be copied and pasted over to your device, and then uploaded to the cloud, either on Google Drive or Dropbox.
2. Install Your Files
Now that you’ve got all of your files safely stored in the cloud somewhere, it’s time to install and set them up so that they’re ready to go when you need them.
Let’s start with fonts:
For colours, how you add them will depend on what software you are using:
Logos don’t need installing, you can just open them as required, or if you’re using Adobe products, you can add them to an Adobe CC Library, but I’ve put together a go-to guide to logo formats for you so that you know exactly which logos to use when!
3. Circulate Your Guidelines
Depending on your designer and the process that they have, you are likely to have been provided with brand guidelines or a brand board or something similar. This document outlines the different elements of your brand and how they are used, from your logo, to your messaging, photos, and more.
If you have other people on your team, or hire external suppliers and vendors who work with your brand, it’s important to share these guidelines with them. This ensures that everyone is on the same page and that your brand will be presented consistently no matter who is doing the work.
4. Update Your Socials
The quickest and easiest way to start applying your new brand and announcing it to the world, is to update your social media profiles. Upload your new logo as the profile photo, change your Instagram highlight covers to match your updated colour palette, start using any new brand photography as your cover photos and posting them in your feed, and updated that bio with your new messaging! You’ll feel like a million bucks in minutes!
5. Upgrade Your Website
Your website is your online home, and 38% of users will stop interacting with a website if the layout is unattractive (Forbes), so we’ve got to get it looking ship shape and on-brand! If you have a web designer, this would be when you would talk to them and share the brand guidelines, otherwise you can make the changes yourself depending on the platform that your website is built in.
Here are some tutorials for the most common website-building platforms:
6. Tell Your Story
Okay, it’s about time we tell the world, don’t you think?! Create social media posts, write articles, record videos, hop on Instagram or FB live, do a webinar, have a party, or whatever feels right for you and your business. However you choose to tell the world, celebrate this moment! This is a fun, exciting time for you and you deserve to take the time to bask in those feelings!
7. Use Your Designs
If you had any templates or designs made during the branding process, now’s the time to start using them! Print those business cards, get that letterhead set up, make that merch, create those social media posts! You paid for these things so it’s in your best interests to make the most of them, and getting them sussed now means that they won’t get stuck in the ‘to-do’ pile and end up never getting done! Starting to use the templates for any documents, social media posts, presentations, newsletters, or any other parts of your business will ensure your brand stays consistent and that you can keep the momentum of your brand launch going well into the future.
8. Rock Your Brand
Alright, you’ve done all of the initial hard work and now all that’s left to do is rock your brand and keep loving on it from here on out! Keep rolling out your brand to more of your touchpoints and developing it over time to keep it fresh and flexible as you grow, and make sure to review how well it’s working every so often in order to celebrate any successes and spot any improvements.
If you’re stuck for ideas for where to apply your brand, you can check out The 15 Best Ways to Make the Most of Your Logo.