Recently, we’ve been working quite a lot with DIY music branding techniques in our campaigns. Even though artists and labels we help are usually aware of the basics necessary for creating their brand – such as the name, story, brand promise – there’s one thing most of them don’t think about enough, and it is brand consistency. And based on our experience, we know that thinking ahead about it can put you ahead of your competition or artists with a similar following representing the same genre or style – not to mention it will help you get organised and have a clear vision for your music’s future.
Once you’ve got it all figured out – your colour schemes, fonts, how you communicate with your fans – you need to create a safe environment for them to get involved in what you do. Ideally, your followers would know that they can depend on your brand (i.e. that you deliver music reflecting the mood they are looking for) and then you can, regularly and in a subtle way, work your way up in terms of how they perceive you.
In fact, consistency has an effect not only on how audiences perceive your music. It helps build your brand’s reputation and increase its authenticity, which are key factors in differentiating yourself from the competition. Therefore, through consistent brand efforts, you make sure the first impression that people have of you is always true to your vision, story, and brand promise.
Have a look at where to start working on making your music brand consistent:
Stick to your chosen colours and fonts
There are plenty of websites offering free fonts for you to use, such as 1001 Free Fonts or DaFont. You can even create your own using sites like Calligraphr that can turn anyone’s handwriting into a proper digital font. Spend some time on it and make sure you end up with one that is unique enough and reflects your vision. Then, pair it with another standardised font (such as Helvetica) to avoid your graphics and texts look too monotonous.
Clean up your links & bios
There’s only one thing more frustrating than not being able to find information about a new favourite artist online – the fact that often times they don’t link to all their profiles on social media platforms. Make sure all your profiles are easily accessible in the “About” section and create a network of their own. Don’t forget about Spotify! And on top of that, make sure all your bios are there, too, updated regularly.
Try to reflect your sound in your brand’s look
It’s no secret that certain musical genres can be easily reflected through an artist’s image – rock bands have their leather jackets and heavy boots, folk singer-songwriters would opt for an acoustic guitar and a more natural colour scheme, and EDM or pop acts would more likely go for brighter and more vibrant styles. However, don’t worry if your vision doesn’t include strict genre selection and you don’t know how to reflect your sound visually – you can get inspires by… your own fans. People’s taste in music is, for the most part, reflected in the way they choose to look, studies show. And whereas it is most visible in subcultures, being attentive will certainly make it easier for you to choose your brand’s unique look.
Document your brand
Keep track of all the decisions that you make – it will be easier to review it before making further changes that influence its identity and personality. And you’ll be prepared to face any market changes on top of that! It’s worth being organised as well as helping your future self remember what you wanted to achieve when your branding idea was first born. Things change and so do our taste and vision – it’s great to go back to the basics once in a while to review everything and face it with all the new that surrounds us. Especially when it means having to deal with bigger audiences and trying to understand their needs and expectations that they have about your brand evolving.
Let your team know about it all!
There’s no successful brand without a great team and clear communication between all the team members. Make a short PDF document or a spreadsheet and go over all the specifics there – pin it in a conversation or your group for easy access and let everyone know every time you change something there.