I was chatting with an award-winning baker recently who shared that she walks to a local farm to pick up her eggs. They are often so fresh they are still warm when she mixes them into her pastry batter. The image of the warm eggs beaten into a batter of organic, carefully selected ingredients, stuck with me. Mostly because I love food but also because I knew there was something very special about how she selected her ingredients and I’m sure it has something to do with the outstanding quality of her baked goods.
I baked a cake for my sister’s birthday this past week. She wanted a very specific, time-consuming, triple-layered Raspberry Lemon Coconut Cake. Many steps, tools and ingredients were required to make this possible. I ran around the kitchen collecting the citrus zester, the sifter, mixer, etc. I realized that my tools weren’t completely up-to-par for making this type of cake but I knew they could get the job completed with a little extra hard work, and admittedly, a second set of hands. What was most important were the ingredients. I couldn’t substitute the lemon zest for lemon juice or the cake flour for all-purpose flour—I had to make sure that the ingredients were correct and of good quality so the final outcome would be desirable.
I look at building a brand in a very similar way. There are tools for all different business levels based on budget. What if you don’t have a top-quality citrus zester? Or in branding terms—maybe it’s your web host. Or your email marketing platform. It definitely makes the job easier, smoother, and takes less time when your hosting provider and email marketing platform are running well … but if you don’t have good content to share on your website or email you might as well not waste your time.
Ensuring that you have all of the necessary ingredients to produce a desirable outcome translates perfectly when you are looking at your brand. I actually think breaking it down into a recipe makes perfect sense. I would list out the tools you need, as well as the content that should be created and the timing for each step of the process. This is typically what I do for each project I work on with a customer. For more information on how I can help you with your brand message me directly here. For a list of basic content that you should collect to better brand your business see below:
1. Your mission and values statements
2. A list of products or services
3. Logo (Full-color, black or one-color version, plus different orientations if necessary)
4. Secondary fonts to accompany your logo
5. Specific colors to be used with and for your brand (outline these by PMS, CMYK and RGB breakdown for consistency)
6. Textures, illustrations and/or photographs that serve as secondary brand elements—helping to emulate the style of your business and mission
7. A concise list of content categories that speak to your ideal customer