Let me make business planning and goal setting for the New Year easy as for you! I’ll share what you need to include, give you some ideas to get started and even a free business template to use!
If business planning doesn’t sound like your kind of fun, don’t worry. It isn’t for many other small to medium sized business owners either. That was until you started reading this, because boy, have I got the business planning help you need to get your business kicked off and sorted for the New Year.
Let’s Get Your Business Planning & Goal Setting Sorted!
What do you want your business to achieve this year? Increased profits, new customers and a larger online presence? A business plan can help you nail down the specifics and requires you to:
Then there’s the New Year’s resolutions or goals to consider. Now I’m not talking about the personal ones we all set and then forget about on the 2nd January though. Rather though the business resolutions we set and then follow through on throughout the year – and yes, they get followed through with!
To help you get started, here are a few you could use or tweak for your business:
It’s time to get your shopping sorted and order unique Christmas gifts for all the family! Luckily, I know exactly where to shop, so come and see the best range of family Christmas presents in NZ!
Christmas is just around the corner and it’s time to get all those unique Christmas gifts sorted for your family. Yup, that’s right – this Christmas it’s all about those functional presents because they’re the ones people love to receive! Usable presents such as T-shirts, hoodies, cushion covers and onesies are always appreciated and unlike that pair of plastic wineglasses, will never be shelved away in the cupboard or regifted.
I’ve put my designer hat on and created a beautiful range of designs suitable for all types of garments and home décor items. I’d love for you to take a look…
Guide to Unique Christmas Presents Your Family Will Love
It’s no secret that I absolutely love Christmas! The opportunity to spend quality time with friends and family, lots of yummy food and the chance to relax and unwind after a busy year. I will admit though, that finding the perfect Christmas gifts does take a lot of time and effort.
I know that as a Mum, I love it when my husband and kids receive a present they can use. One that doesn’t end up hidden in a drawer and is something that I would possibly have needed to buy in the future are also added bonuses. So, I got to thinking and made a list of Christmas gifts that I know are functional, family orientated and will be loved by all – and I’m sharing them with you!
Christmas is only getting closer and closer – and I can’t wait!
You’ve got a fabulous idea, but you’re not too sure about what’s involved in starting a business. Well don’t worry, because today I’m going to guide you through the five essential steps to take to turn your idea into a profitable business.
5 Key Steps in Starting a Business
Starting a business is a very exciting time. Whether you’re making it your full-time job or using it as a side business to complement your income, it’s important to get the basics sorted right from the start. To help you do this, I’m sharing these five key initial steps to help you get up and running.
Talk with any business owner who has invested in a professional logo design and they’ll say the same thing: it was well worth it!
As a professional graphic designer, it is my goal to put the investment of a professionally designed logo within the reach of all New Zealand businesses. That’s one of the reasons why I’ve created my range of affordable Design and Brand packages.
I also love being able to give my clients the advantages having a professionally designed logo provides, and that’s what I’d like to discuss today.
5 Benefits of Having a Professional Logo Design
There’s more to a logo than just choosing a few colours, a font and an icon. In fact, there’s an entire planning, design and trial process that needs to be completed first. As a professional graphic designer, I’ve spent years perfecting my design skills and knowledge to create logos which resonate with my clients and provide them benefits which include:
Let’s dive into what brand consistency looks like within a business, plus four of the key benefits it can provide your business, and how you too can use it to increase your level of success.
If there was one thing I wish every business used, it would be brand consistency. This simple yet effective tool holds the power to not only reach others, but to show them what your business stands for. By having brand consistency throughout all your business’ website, social media and marketing endeavours, your audience will receive the same message wherever they are.
What Does Brand Consistency Look Like?
A business with brand consistency delivers the same message to its audience regardless of where that audience is or the method of communication with that audience. This includes:
4 Important Benefits of Having Brand Consistency
There are numerous benefits to having and using brand consistency within your business. Four which I strongly feel are important are:
Be noticed and remembered for all the right reasons by using a consistent visual brand image – get in touch with me today and let’s talk about it!
First impressions matter!
A prospective customer or client will decide whether to use your business or not within the first two seconds, based upon what your business looks like. But why do people make that decision based upon what your business ‘looks like’ and not what it can do? Because our brains analyse visual information much easily than any other type. In fact, we process visual information 60,000 times faster than written text and around 90% of the communication within our brains is through visual impulses. This makes having great visual content for our businesses vital to achieve success.
Getting Your Business Noticed Visually
To get your business noticed, it needs to present an attractive appearance to the world. The best way to do this is to utilise the skills of a professional graphic designer. They will ensure all your design work is:
How One Bite Graphic Design Can Help You Get Noticed
Helen can help you with creating professionally designed logos, business cards, Facebook covers, social media graphics and website graphics for your business. She will work with you to alter your existing branding or create new from scratch. Having had over two decades of experience in the graphic design industry, Helen knows exactly how to create memorable and attention grabbing visual content so important to get noticed and grow your business.
Contact Helen today to discuss the ways she can help improve the visual appearance of your business and get it noticed!
Chances are that you have a new business which does not yet have a logo or that you want a new logo designed. Maybe you do have a logo but it was designed by your friend and not a professional graphic designer. Before you jump in and make any decisions about logos, you need to really understand the importance of having a professionally designed logo.
Why Are Logos Important?
A logo does two things; firstly it shares the name of your business and creates a visual symbol representing your business. It is vital that your logo creates a positive first impression as it is the face of your business. Your logo will become both the main image your business is known by and one which you represent your business with. A professionally designed logo from a graphic designer will show the world that your business is stable, professional and focused. A logo designed by a friend of a friend will instead show your business as being the opposite – unstable, amateurish and unfocused.
Designing A Business Logo
Once you have chosen a graphic designer to create your business logo, they will start this six step logo design process with you;
At One Bite Design we take logo design seriously. We know that the logos we design give our clients advantages over their competition. Get in touch with us today and let us design a logo which will help your business to swim!
On the face of it, you may wonder what graphic design and digital photography have in common.
One uses a computer and one uses a camera.
How could they work together?
Well, graphic design is an intricate art that requires a comprehensive understanding of composition, colour, and balance. There is a lot that goes into creating the perfect image. That is much the same as the creative discipline of digital photography. There are many aspects that go into photographing the ultimate web-worthy shot.
When you look at it that way, it is no surprise that the two go hand in hand.
And they go hand in hand for One Bite Graphic Design & Photography now too… check out this example of stunning photography used in a Facebook cover design, all done by me, Helen.
I am really excited that I have completed my Diploma in Digital Photography. After 3 years of intense study, assignments, and taking more photographs than I can count... I am finally done! While it was hard work to juggle study, my business, and family life I am so glad that I did it.
I am very proud of myself. By undertaking this qualification, I have proven to myself that hard work and dedication pay off. I received high marks for each of my assignments, which reflect the hours that were invested into each.
And now, I get to offer my new expertise to my clients!
As well as the graphic design services you already know and love, I am also able to offer product photography, business photography, corporate photography, food photography and headshots.
How Graphic Design And Digital Photography Align
Graphical elements don’t happen by accident. There are a lot of painstaking choices to make - the right font, colour themes, and layout to effectively communicate your message. There is no denying the visual impact of a powerful image to convey mood, emotion, and intent.
The perfect image is indeed worth a thousand words, and when combined with other graphic design aspects, is a compelling medium.
It is also a key part of your branding. Having all of your images align with your brand is vital. Your headshots, your social media templates, your product shots and your logo should all align and be consistently recognisable for your audience. Each graphic element should use the same look and feel, as well as your brand colours.
When it comes to the image content, graphic designers often spend hours trawling through stock photography websites looking for the right image to blend in with their concept. But often, stock photos never quite hit the mark. It is near to impossible to find the right image to match my expectations and stock images are definitely not unique. There are also very few that are kiwi themed.
That is where my own digital photography skills come in.
As a graphic designer, I have been trained to manipulate and adjust photographic images. But, if you don't have the right photo to start with, then all the adjusting in the world will not make the desired end result!
There is a clear benefit to hiring a designer who is also a skilled photographer. Someone who knows exactly what image they need to use and has the ability to capture it themselves.
The Benefits Of Using A Graphic Designer With Photography Skills
Photographers have a deeper understanding of composition and visual balance. They learn how to effectively tell a story by not only using the subject of the photo, but also by using the rule of thirds.
What is that?
The rule of thirds is an important aspect of graphic design. The thirds are tone, colour, brightness and layout. The use of colour and contrast in both creative arts cannot be understated. Tones and hues that are subtly different can produce varied emotions and moods. They tell a story about your brand or product without the use of words. A graphic designer understands this well, but perhaps even more so when they are required to capture the perfect photographic image to match.
Images remove language barriers and can connect with an audience in a split second. They don’t even need to read any text. Think about the most powerful websites, memes or posters you have seen recently. Chances are, the image was the thing that captured your attention and stuck in your mind long after you had forgotten the associated text.
How You Can Utilise The Skills In Your Business
Whether it’s a banner, brochure, webpage, or poster, the fine art of combining texts and graphics can make an impact. It can transform your content from a piece of media that gets scanned and overlooked, into an eye-catching and valuable asset that raises brand awareness, draws customers in and converts into sales!
Engaging the services of a graphic designer/photographer is a wise move. Not only do they have a deeper understanding of design concepts, but you can also save yourself money. You don’t need to hire separate specialists and then try to explain the brief to both of them. By engaging my skills in both areas, it makes it easier for us all.
Quite often, one of the most time-consuming aspects of my design work is searching for an image that is “just right” and fits both my vision and yours. Because I can produce my own images, it saves me hours of time! And, all of them will be tailored to the right size and composition, creating a quality end product that is consistent with all your associated media and theming.
So, if you are looking for a one stop graphical design shop, then get in touch with me here at One Bite Graphic Design & Photography. I would love to help make your business shine.
So for this blog I decided to do something a little bit different than usual. I am not going to talk about graphic design, photography or even anything to do with business.
At this time of the year when our thoughts and actions tend toward kind and thoughtful encouragements to our families and friends has led me to share something personal about myself and my family. Through this I hope to raise awareness in the hope that people will think before they speak and type, especially on social media, and be very careful about what can come across as hurtful comments.
As we near the end of the year and Christmas time especially when we spend time with family, friends and loved ones. We think over the years and memories we all share, the good and the bad. I know this time of year is not happy for everyone so please hear my heart in this and please only comment positively if you feel you would like to comment at all.
Our youngest child was born on Christmas Day, yes December 25th. Our family were absolutely delighted about this and have celebrated her birthday joyously! But I am sad to say but there are a lot of people who have some very negative things to say to my daughter and myself over the years.
My First Two Children
To give a little perspective she has an older brother and sister who both needed special care medical treatment after they were born. They both needed to be resuscitated for different reasons straight after being born and needed some ongoing monitoring. It took me a while to process all of that after their births and took longer to feel up to having another baby considering the possible risk to another baby. I suffered post natal depression but also had such a deep love and gratefulness for their survival and for them as precious gifts to our family. I managed to love and care for them very well with the love and input from my supportive husband and family. There is only 20 months between them so life was pretty busy.
Around four years after the brith of our second child we decided we would be open to the possibility of having another child.... it wasn’t long before we found out we were pregnant and due in December. We were over the moon with the idea of having another blessing and me being in a much better state of mind to cope with everything having a baby would require. I kept relatively well during the pregnancy. As December started I wondered when my little bundle of joy would be born and it everything would be ok.
I was aware of the days in December being ticked off and the possibility of my new baby being born on Christmas Day. I knew that I didn’t want my baby to be born on Christmas Day but it was something I couldn’t control . It was Christmas Eve when I started to get some contractions... so many things were going through my mind. Will my baby be ok, a boy, or a girl? Would I cope with the pain? Would my baby be born on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day?... So I laboured through the early evening until early morning. We had Life FM playing so I laboured to all the lovely Christmas Carols. At 1.30am my precious baby girl was born - and born healthy! My husband and I were over the moon!
I am sad to say that many people seem to have many comments to say about the date of my daughters birthday not only to me but also her. I have had people say to me “she is going to hate you for that” when I replied to their question of when she was born... “Oh no you poor thing”... “do you still give her a birthday party?” and so the list goes on. She is so so special and has such a heart of gold. The way she cares for others is amazing. You just have to read about her mission for the homeless to get the picture. She LOVES Christmas and getting gifts for others. Every year she has a party with all her friends! On Christmas Day / her birthday we all open Christmas presents and have loads of yummy food and come afternoon tea time… the second round of celebrations begin... more presents - more food and of course another birthday cake. She will be nine this year and despite what people have said to her, she LOVES her birthday.
So my hope with this blog is to not only honour my beautiful girl, wonderful son, older daughter, my husband and family but to also raise awareness for others out there with birthdays on or near Christmas or any other special days. Please stop and think before you say anything to anyone about their birthday, even if you think it is a lighthearted or humorous comment. Pause and make sure that "if you can’t say anything positive that you don’t say anything at all”.
In closing I would like to wish you and all your loved ones a safe and happy holiday season.
In all things be kind!
Branding? Just another keyword graphic designers use to get our money, or something that is actually important to a business?
I started Cute Cuddles 6 years ago, and I have had three completely different looks for my brand. Here is what I have learnt along the way.
I had a very strong background in the corporate world before I started my business, as well as a marketing diploma. With this in my back pocket I knew that I needed to make my brand consistent. Like a lot of us small business start-ups, I had little to no budget for design. So I went the obvious route at the time and hopped onto Vista Print.
After searching long and hard through their free templates I selected the one that I thought suited my “brand” best at the time. It had a pink polka dot ribbon across the top and a button to one side. Here is the irony, I make handsewn soft toys with no plastic parts or choking hazards and I put an obvious choking hazard in my logo. Palm slap to face moment! However, this worked for me for the start-up of my business.
Growing my Brand
Being a free template, it didn’t take long for others to also start using the same one. I started seeing “my brand” popping up in other places. This was an interesting feeling – am I advertising their business or are they advertising me, or are we both getting lost in translation?
I felt like this was a good time for a new look. I reached out on a couple of business networks I was part of at the time and got some recommendations. I briefly explained my situation and the next logo was born.
At the time of this logo getting designed, it was fashionable to have a button style logo. And that was what I got.
However, in hindsight, I now also realise that this new logo wasn’t my brand either. At the time I still wasn’t confident in myself to say I wasn’t happy with the new logo.
Recovery and Moving Forward
After approximately 18 months with this new logo, I could feel that my heart wasn’t in it. I love my business but my “brand” was failing me. It didn’t project my fun or passion.
Around this time I started to think about the future of Cute Cuddles and started working with a business mentor. After a strong recommendation I finally plucked up the courage to contact Helen at One Bite Graphic Design.
And it was a case of having to pluck up courage. I felt lost, both in my lack of brand and in my image of my business.
Helen gave me a simple questionnaire to answer and made me google some images too. This helped me get my head around colours and which sorts of logos resonated with me.
There was good communication back and forth and suddenly the 'YES, this is it!' was there. Helen was so lovely and understanding to my situation.
But a Brand Isn’t Just a Logo
One of the biggest things that has helped carry me along on this journey we call business – having a brand that I believe in.
Helen didn’t stop with my logo – I have business cards, compliment slips, discount cards, thank you cards, Christmas cards, banners, hoodies, email signatures. And as my business grows, so does my brand.
When people see my logo, they know my brand. I love that about my logo, my brand!
Think of your favourite product – I bet you it was the logo (brand) that popped into your head first, wasn’t it? See how important that is?
As I said previously, having worked in the corporate world, and having a marketing diploma, I thought I could brand my own business alone. How wrong I was. I seriously recommend letting a professional help you brand your business, it’s like a fast track to where you want to be. With a brand you can be passionate about, people really feel the difference when you interact with them.
When you think of your brand – do you stand out in the crowd? Or are you blending in, unseen? And if you are blending in, contact Helen today and become a stand out brand! You won’t regret it!
One Bite Design BLOG
Check out these amazing blogs. Loads of great information and tips.