Branding for conscious businesses: how to create a brand that feels human
Updated: Mar 14
Whether you’re running a yoga studio, a sustainable clothing boutique, or other conscious business, branding is one of the most powerful marketing tools you can use to create a connection with your customers.
Consistent branding establishes your company as trustworthy and increases its perceived value. It also leads to customer loyalty which means more revenue for you down the line!
So, What Is a Brand?
First of all, let’s address the common misconception about branding: your brand is not only a logo or a color scheme.
Your Brand Is a Story
The purpose of branding is to help you communicate your business’ beliefs and values so you can differentiate yourself from your competitors.
There are 12 classic brand archetypes (based on Carl Jung’s personality archetypes), each with their own distinct personalities, including the Lover, the Innocent, the Royal, and more.
Think of famous brands you know and how different they are: some brands position themselves as friendly and down-to-earth (IKEA), while others want to appear exclusive and luxurious (Rolex).
Your Brand Is a Feeling
As famous author and branding expert Marty Neumeier once said, “A logo is not a brand. A brand is not an identity. A brand is not a product. A brand is a person’s gut feeling about a product, service, or organization.” Every decision you make and action you take as a business – for example, the tone of voice you choose for your company and the way you interact with clients – makes your customers feel something. Your brand is the intangible feeling people have about your business as a whole when they see your logo or hear the name of your company.
One of the ways to evoke a certain feeling in your clients is using color, since different colors are associated with different feelings.
For example, according to color psychology, blue symbolizes peace and calmness, while green is associated with healing and growth. Both of these colors are often used by companies in the health and wellness industries.
So choose your brand colors strategically, depending on what specific feelings you want to evoke in your clients. But remember that actions speak louder than words – or colors, in this case.
Your Brand Is a Promise
Your brand is a promise on two levels: experiential and core values. Experiential: Every time your customers interact with your business, they have a certain experience. Over time, they come to expect the same experience, so you have to deliver it consistently.
If you do, the customers trust your business to meet their needs, and therefore, trust your brand. But as soon as your customers are no longer getting what they came to expect, you've broken your brand promise and risk losing their trust and loyalty.
For example, if you always deliver packages within 3 days of purchase, your customers will come to expect that. If you suddenly take 21 days to deliver packages, they will feel betrayed because you did not keep the promise.
Core Values: Your brand promise is the promise to always stay true to your core values, your vision and mission.
For example, if you sell fair trade products and would suddenly start selling products that don’t comply with the fair trade standards, that promise would be violated.
To form a deep connection between your company and your customers, you must always stay true to your chosen values and propositions.
What Goes Into Creating a Brand
A lot of thought goes into creating a strong, memorable brand, and there are many nuances that are not immediately obvious.
Developing a brand identity begins with deciding on what you stand for and what you want to be known for, as well as your unique selling points, credibility, and other business advantages.
Once you get clear on what drives your business and your place in the industry, you can use the 12 brand archetypes to select a brand personality that appeals to your target audience based on their motivations, values, and patterns of behavior.
Your website, social media graphics, ads, flyers, even client invoices should all be consistent. That includes layout, colors, fonts, and other design elements.
Reinforce your brand at every point of the customer journey – from the first time they learn about your business, to after they make a purchase.
Remember: small things make a big difference in how your brand is perceived.
Voice & Tone
Your chosen brand persona should be reflected in every aspect of your business – not only in visual design, but also in your website copy & client communications.
Speaking of copy: it’s not what you say, but how you say it.
Thoughtful, authentic copy that uses the tone of voice and language congruent with your brand’s archetype is the key to your business’ long-term success.
When it comes to pricing, how much you charge for your products or services also tells a story.
If you position yourself as a mysterious, high-end brand, setting a price that is too low could backfire and be seen as a red flag by your customers. After all, would you trust a company that sells luxury watches for $15?
Don’t Forget the Conscious Element of Your Conscious Business
As a conscious business, you have a strong focus on impacting the world in a positive way, on both a local and global scale.
That’s why it’s a good idea to place the mission and the purpose of your business at the forefront of your branding and clearly state how the actions of your business affect the wider world.
For example, if you have sustainable internal or external practices, such as zero carbon emissions or no plastic packaging, make sure to communicate that on your website and in other marketing materials.
Need Help With Your Brand Strategy?
At Pixy Studio, we like to kickstart every web design project with an in-depth brand strategy session to learn more about you, your dreams and aspirations for your business, and who you want to serve so that each project is set up for long-term success.
As the visionary behind your brand, you are at the heart of our process.
If you need strategic advice or want to create a beautiful website that reflects your brand identity, we’re happy to help.
Schedule a complimentary call, and let us take care of the brand strategy and website design.