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Your DIY Design How-To Guide

I’m Melanie.
Enneagram 3, lover of lists, puppy-mom, always rockin' a curly do, and swear I was into green juice before anyone else! 
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Building your brand from scratch is no easy task, which is why branding is one of the most expensive investments new companies make. Branding is so much more than a logo, it’s how your business makes people feel and what you have to offer. It’s the way you communicate and inspire. As Jeff Bezos put it, “Your brand is whatever people say about you when you’re not in the room.”  Most of the time, it’s always best to leave it up to the pros who know exactly how to cultivate a clear strategy and brand messaging for you, but when you just don’t have the budget or are unsure of what direction you’d like your real estate business to head into, putting together a set of brand assets to get you started is totally doable and we’re going to show you exactly how you can do that. 

ONE| CREATE A MOOD BOARD

This is the most fun part of creating a cohesive brand and a step you definitely should not skip. A mood board is a collection of images that convey a general topic or feeling and for the purpose of Real Estate marketing its a group of visuals that will help curate a look that you love. The first thing you want to do is head over to Pinterest and create an account if you haven’t already, then create a new board, label it something like “[YOUR NAME] BRAND”  Then start pinning anything and everything you love. Focus on images that make you smile, fonts and logos that inspire you, colours that make you giddy, the trick in this first step is to be really easy with yourself and just let your heart do the talking, reserve judgement and just pin what makes you happy.  For inspiration check out Fourth Street Creative’s Mood Board

 

TWO | COLOURS

Now that you’ve got a bunch of elements you love, it’s time to narrow your focus on colour. If you’ve pinned dozens of colour palettes, it’s time to refine, refine, refine. You want to pick 3-5 colours that will work with all of your marketing material, from social media to print marketing. Keep in mind that you’ll want a main colour or two, and also one you will use for paragraphs. For a full walkthrough on how to create a colour palette for your brand check out this article

THREE | FONTS 

Next, go through your pins and choose two complementary fonts to use as headings and subheadings throughout your marketing. A good trick of the trade is to pair Sans Serif (without feet) with Serif fonts (with feet)  and vice versa. If you’re going for a more modern look stay away from Serif fonts altogether and focus on different weights. If you’d like a thinner font for your headings choose a heavier font for your subheading. When it comes to the font it’s all about balance. You can also use a third font as an accent font that you use throughout your marketing sparingly or as an added element to jazz up your visuals, but if this is too overwhelming, stick to two for now. 

FOUR | CURATE SOME VISUALS

Decide what visual style you want to be associated with your brand. Do you want nice clean white images or dark moody ones? Do you like a pop of colour, or a more vintage, muted look? Pin some images that best represent your brand style. This will help better define your brand’s aesthetic. For example, the visuals at Fourth Street Creative are dark and moody with a vintage flair. Whenever we are putting together marketing pieces we know our images need to have this tone to be on-brand.   

FIVE | CREATE YOUR LOGOS 

Now comes the fun part, creating your logo. The best place to start is in Canva, with a logo template. If you want to create your own from scratch just open a new design and get designing. There are a few different things to consider when designing your new logo. Do you want it to just be your name? Initials? Do you want an icon or Team Name? The easiest way to DIY your own logo as a realtor is to stick with your name and designation in a font that compliments the elements you’ve put together on your mood board. Once you’ve completed that part, decide on whether or not you want an image icon or just your initials as an icon. There are different places you’ll need to use your logo so make sure you design one primary logo (horizontal) and one secondary logo (square or stacked). Once you’ve designed those, save your files in black and white and whatever brand colours you choose and you’re good to go! Link to how to use your brand assets 

 

LOOKING TO SAVE TIME? CHOOSE ONE OF OUR PRE-MADE BRAND KITS

 

 

There you have it, how you can curate your own brand assets without the expensive price tag. Even though nothing beats hiring a professional to do the work necessary to create an extensive brand strategy, there’s also nothing wrong with putting together something simple and professional now and doing the deep dive into your branding later. Happy designing friend!

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