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!
When you come across a new business, what is one of the first things you look at? Yes thats right, its their business logo.
Your logo not only sets you apart from other businesses, it can help give clients an idea of who you are, what you do and what they can expect from your business.
While logo design is a science in itself, once you have the perfect logo, how and where can you best use it to promote your business?
Let’s look at some of the options for where you can use your business logo...
Traditional Business Logo Placement
First up, your logo should be added to some of the, physical components of your business. That means your business cards, letterheads, invoices, email footers, and other routine aspects of your day to day business.
Once you have the paper options covered off, it is time to look at the fabric options. Of course you want to have your logo appear on company uniforms. But even if you don’t necessarily have a uniform for your business, a branded shirt or hoody can do wonders to drum up interest in your brand.
Lucky for you, we design and print custom apparel here at One Bite Design. So whether you are manning a market stall, doing a Facebook live, or simply getting your groceries, you can get your logo and branding out there!
Have a look at how well Sharon from Totally Balmy uses her logo and branding to promote her business! This brand is one of my favourites! Love seeing it in so many places!
If packaging is part of your company’s operation, you have a big opportunity to showcase your logo. You can print it on tissue paper or other packaging materials, boxes, address labels and printed inclusions.
Get creative - restaurants can present burgers in logo-printed wrappers, fruit sellers can pop stickers onto their produce - when it comes to packaging, think outside the box, as it were!
Your online presence is just as important as your offline one. Your business logo should feature heavily on your website and the various social media platforms you choose to use.
From your Facebook cover image, to branded social media templates, to your YouTube profile pic, each appearance of your logo needs to fit the right dimensions and format for the platform.
For decades, businesses have been printing their logos on “freebies” - notepads, fridge magnets, pens, desk calendars, mousepads and other rather mundane office supplies. While this is still a great idea in the right framework, there are almost unlimited options available to get your name on any number of products relevant to your business.
Got a business with a tech slant? Print your logo onto flash drives. Own a sporting goods store? Get some Frisbees branded. Have a café in your workplace for clients, with a barista (lucky you) - impress potential customers by having your logo created in coffee art on top of their cups of joe!
You can even be environmentally friendly and help save the planet by printing your logo on reusable straws, shopping bags, water bottles or travel mugs.
The options are endless - from cellphone cases and tote bags to lip balms and umbrellas, you can make your mark on a wide range of swag.
Get creative with your signage. Whether it’s a physical business, trade show or other event you don’t need to rely on one store-front sign. Technology provides you with so many more cool solutions like wall or window decals, A-frame chalk boards, ceiling or floor tiles, or digital display boards.
How about a “gobo”? This is a stencil cut out of glass or metal which is slotted in front of a spotlight - the shape can be projected onto any backdrop - tables, floors, ceilings or feature walls.
Don’t forget your vehicles - branding your company car, truck or van with your logo can be invaluable for drawing in new customers.
Social media is an integral part of your marketing strategy. But it can be hard to get traction on many of the platforms. A great way to get exposure for your business is to go viral!
Everybody loves a good meme, so if you come up with any for your business, make sure that your logo appears on them. That way when they get liked, loved, and shared, your branding will be in front of lots of interested eyes.
When it comes to where you use your business logo, you are only limited by your creativity and budget. Regardless of where you are going to put your logo, you need to make sure you have an attractive and professional design to begin with. Here at One Bite Graphic Design we specialise in logos and can provide you with the perfect design and format to ensure your logo really makes its mark.
Get in touch with Helen today and start the amazing journey of branding your business. If you already have your logo designed but want to further enhance your brand awareness get in touch today as well. There are infinite places you can use your logo and branding! Get stuck in to it!
Changing your branding is not something to be taken lightly and should only be done when necessary. That’s because your brand is how people remember your business. Imagine if McDonald’s suddenly swapped its golden arches for an image of a burger. They suddenly become just a burger shop, without anything to easily differentiate them with their competitors. It’s a similar thing with your business’ branding. By changing your logo, font and colours, you put your customers off balance and it takes time for them to readjust to your new branding image.
However, sometimes changing your branding is the best decision for your business. It may be that you’re offering new services or products, have a change of ownership or your old branding no longer reflects the direction your business is taking. Today we’re going to discuss all you need to know about changing your branding.
Changing Your Branding: A Beginner’s Guide 101
When you rebrand, it can be a partial or complete rebranding. You can choose between:
Pros and Cons of Rebranding
When you alter your branding, you’re doing it with the desire to grow your business. In order to make the right decision, you need to weigh up the pros and cons.
The pros of rebranding include:
The cons of rebranding include:
A great way to promote your business, rebranded or not, is to list it in a directory. Business Networking NZ offers a free NZ business directory listing and it’s a great way to increase your online presence. Come and add your details today!
One Bite Design BLOG
Check out these amazing blogs. Loads of great information and tips.