Branding Your Handmade Products
Make your Handmade Business Memorable
Learn about building a brand as an indie artist or designer. Branding helps create an image for you and your business. It helps generate repeat business and word of mouth which is so important for small business.
What is Branding?
Branding is about making sure people remember your business. It encompasses the look of your business, you logo, website, packaging, etc. and also the way your customers feel about your business.
Walmart is known for low prices.
Volvo is known for safe cars.
Domino's is known for fast pizza delivery.
What do you want to be known for? In my case I want Noadi's Art to be known for beautiful and quirky sculpture and jewelry.
Why Should a Handmade Business Worry about Branding?
You want more business right? Building a good brand image will help you generate more business. If your customers remember you well they're more likely to buy you're creations again and also to tell their friends and family about you.
Being a small indie business myself I know that budgets for this sort of thing are small so I've compiled advice that requires little or no money to implement. Do expect to spend a fair bit of time doing this when you first start (though once the initial work is done it gets easier).
Branding Basics Links
- What Is Branding? Basic Business Terms
Small Business - A discussion of how to run a small business, how to manage accounting and payroll, how to handle growth, how to hire, how to fire, tools and services, insurance, taxes, technology, benefits.
- FREE Online Guide to Creating a Small Business Brand | SMALL BRANDING
Your free online guide to creating a small business brand on a super-tight budget.
- Branding archive | Duct Tape Marketing Blog
Simple, effective and affordable small business marketing
- Marketing for Independent Professionals and Small Business | Shoestring Branding
Marketing for Independent Professionals
- Twitter- Branding Your Etsy Business 140 Characters at a Time | Handmade Spark
Effectively Using Twitter to Brand your Etsy Business: Twitter is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that allows its users to send and read other users' updates (otherwise known as tweets), which are text-based posts of up to 140 cha
- Case Study: Branding an Etsy Store
Or at least that's what we thought we were doing when Barbara Behan agreed to let her Blue Kimono Studio Etsy Store be a case study on The Marketing Spot. But as we got into the branding conversation, Barbara's perspective changed. As Barbara put it:
- Shop Makeover: Creating a Brand Identity for Your Shop :: Etsy Blog
For most people, the term “brand identity” conjures images of multi-national companies and shiny corporate logos. But branding isn’t a marketing strategy that only the big boys should use. Even the smallest of businesses can benefit from a strong bra
- 70 Amazing Business Cards - FubizÂ
Business card inspiration.
MOO does some really beautiful photo business cards. If you're budget is really tight you could try out VistaPrint's Free Business Cards all you pay is shipping. If you're feeling really DIY you can print your own out at home.
Pick a theme. It could be a color scheme, a genre (retro, victorian, country), or set of textures.
Stay consistent. If you want to change your visual look do it all at once unless the change already fits what you've been doing.
Be inspired by others, don't copy them. If you like the box someone is using to package their jewelry it's fine to use the same shape box but make it your own with the colors and printing on it.
Customer Service and Branding
Okay, this should be a no brainer (though plenty of big businesses get this wrong) the way you treat your customer is key to how they perceive you. Maybe if you make billions of dollars a year it doesn't matter but for us little guy it's incredibly important. It's also pretty easy.
What to Do
Be kind and courteous. Treat your customers nicely and without rudeness. If they become rude with you do not respond to them at all unless you have to.
Be prompt. Meet deadlines or ship orders when you say you will.
Be available. Answer emails, letters, phone calls, etc. from your customers as quickly as you can.
Be cooperative. If someone is having trouble with your website or a product help them out as best you can.
This is related to the customer service. Show your customers you aren't a faceless entity. Be fun, be quirky, be sweet, but find what feels right to you and go with it. Don't force it or it won't feel authentic, it needs to fit you not fit what you think your customers want.
The Fun Stuff
DIY Branding Ideas
There are endless things you can do yourself that are creative and makes and impact with your customers.
Wear a shirt, totebag, hat, lab coat, etc. that's been screen printed with your name and logo.
Use recycled materials like old wrapping paper, playing cards, postcards, etc in your packaging or advertising materials.
Post flyers around town.
Include thank you notes or small free gifts with purchases.
- craftgrrl: Cheap screen printing tutorial
Alright, I've finally had the time to "screen print" another shirt, so here's the tutorial...
- D.I.Y. Screen Printing - Instructables - DIY, How To, craft - Entry
Once you start screen printing your original designs you won't want to stop.Watch the the video below and subscribe to our weekly show on iTunes to ...
If you don't feel up to printing your own t-shirt get Zazzle to do it for you.
- Make Your Own Art Stamps and Save
Make your own decorative rubber stamps. Save money and maybe even start a home business.
- Make your own Re-Usable Stencils
This tutorial shows how to take a stencil image and turn it into a reusable stencil sheet.
- Stencil Art...Creating Stencils - Online Tutorial at Melissa Clifton page 1
There are several different techniques for creating stencils with Adobe Photoshop. In this tutorial we will look at using Threshold to make stencils. Part B of this tutorial explains how you can then print your own original t-shirts with your stenci
- Stencil Revolution :: View topic - Bleach on fabric tutorial
Creating a reverse image by stenciling using bleach on dark fabric.
- 105+ Logo Design Tuts And Resources
Logo design in todayâs world has come to be one of the most important aspects of creating a brand identity and connecting with consumers. Logoâs are everywhere - the web, books, magazines, newspapers, television, moviesâ¦you name it, there is some ty