visual branding checklist for content creators graphic with computer phone and tablet illustrations

Visual branding checklist for content creators

December 6, 2021


First, what do I mean by visual brand? I’m talking about the things you need to visually communicate your brand. Think logo, color pallet, and fonts. For this article I am covering the different branded components and materials you need to get started as a content creator, blogger, vlogger, and course creator.

The good news is you don’t need a lot to start out! But, just to be clear, to be successful your visual brand and content need be professional, attractive, consistent, and designed to cater to your target audience. If you want to connect with your audience, grow your brand, and actually generate an income you can’t just throw a bunch of stuff together—you have to take your visual brand seriously.

Today what I’m focusing on is what you need to design for your brand to get the ball rolling and start building a following. For this article I’m only going over digital materials and content formats because they are 1) going to be the easier for all of you DIY designers to create—things can quickly get complicated when it comes to printing; 2) they are going to be the most cost-effective materials starting out—you don’t need to be dropping hundreds of dollars just to get things going.

basics

These are the essentials, the bare basics, the things everyone is going to need right off the bat.

  • Visual brand | Yes, even content creator need a quality logo and style guide to have a successful brand.
  • Social Media | Platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook are great for sharing and marketing your content for free! Take advantage of them.

Designer Tip: Your cover photos, profile pictures, and posts all need to be consistent with your visual brand to further reinforce your brand story, give all your platforms a consistent and professional feel, and to make it easy for your audience to trace your content back to you.

blogger

The additional things you’ll need if you plan on blogging.

  • Website | I personally use Wordpress (I’m not any good when it comes to coding), but other sites like Squarespace and Wix are good options for those of you like me who can’t build a site from scratch.
  • Graphics, photos, infographics, and other visuals for your blog posts | Blogs can get boring quick without visuals. You don’t want to spend so much of your valuable time writing awesome content just to have it ignored because your audience wasn’t interested in an article without pictures.
  • Newsletter and email headers | Keep your audience up to date on your latest content and promotions with attractive, branded emails.
  • Op-in and lead magnets | quizzes, checklists, and cheat sheets are going to great lead magnet options for newbies and those of you who don’t have a lot of time to dedicate to blogging. As you grow your following and have more time to invest, eBooks and workbooks are also popular and effective.

Design Tip: To make your lives easier I highly suggest either purchasing or designing a standard template for each kind of lead magnet you want to use that you can just plug your content into for each opt-in. It will save you so much time AND your content will always look consistent with your brand—it’s a win win!

  • Promotional graphics | Use your website as a platform to promote your latest posts to new visitors and encourage reoccurring visitors to subscribe. Your site isn’t just where you post your content, it’s also where you promote your brand.

Designer tip: All of your promotional graphics need to have a very clear call to action or CTA (ex: “subscribe here and stay up to date on our latest content” or “check out this new recipe that your family will love”) and a working button/subscription form. If you don’t specially tell your audience what you want them to do how are they supposed to know to do it.

Course Creator

  • Workbooks | What course is complete without an engaging workbook?
  • Slide deck | A necessity to clearly communicate with your audience, especially with social distancing forcing so many courses online.

Podcast

  • Podcast cover art | This should also match your visual brand and style guide

YouTuber

  • Channel banner | Continue to reinforce your brand story on your YouTube channel with your channel banner.
  • Video thumbnails | Introduce your videos in an enticing way that promotes clicks instead of scrolls.

If you’re creating a page on a social platform, starting a blog and/or course, launching a podcast, or trying out vlogging, there are only a handful of materials you’ll need to put together, but it’s SO important that everything you do create is professional and consistent with your overall brand and brand story—at the end of the day it could make or break your brand success.

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