How To Look ‘The Business’

Does your new venture need some help to make it look bigger and better? When you go about planning your new business start-up, you'll want to brainstorm all ideas to make you look bigger, better, stronger ... and then bring all their branding ideas together.

This is to ensure your site communicates who you are, what product you feature or which service you offer, and what your brand promises, be consistent in design, logo and page content.

We have lots of advice for start up business owners and how to set up a brand and market that brand to help give your venture credibility and punch.

How to make your start up venture look the business

Corporate Personality

Think about your corporate personality. Will it be formal or fun? If you have a technical product or service, you can take on a techie persona.

If you are providing a business service, your corporate personality will be formal and if you offer consumer merchandise you will match the site’s personality to the product range and intended customers.

We decided to retain a certain amount of formality as we wanted to look professional, but we also have fun. Whichever you choose, your look and feel must communicate your brand both visually and verbally.

Colour Effects

You will see from the Remote Employment and The Remote Worker Awards sites that we have used effective branding techniques.

Visitors often comment that our site is considered to be clean and professional with lots of white space. It reflects personality, yet speaks to both B2B and B2C audiences.

Punch Above Your Weight

Visitors to our site constantly comment on the distinct ‘feel’ we created. The bright theme and fresh colouring, alongside easy navigation and an uncluttered design, speaks for itself.

We used green for several reasons, mostly because it is a lovely serene and calming colour and its eco-friendly symbolism is also appropriate.

Most people believe that there is a large corporate organisation behind our site. We use our brand to punch above our weight so we don’t come across as a home business.

Only when you browse through our pages on the ‘Co Founders’ and ‘Meet The Team’ do you realise that we are a small business. Now, let’s work on getting you to look the business.

Research Brands

While you need to research your target market, your competitors’ sites and your industry’s leading brands, one of the keys to your success is to analyse your audience.

You need to know who your visitors are and what they expect from you. Find out if they are internet savvy or if they require basic steps to get through your site.

White Space

If you have a quick peek at both Remote Employment and The Remote Worker Awards, you will see that we have made good use of ‘White Space’.

When looking around at various sites to get some ideas for your brand, notice which ones make use of this basic, yet simple and highly effective route to professional branding.

By all means, use colour, images and content, but to create a quality site that looks like the top designers and branding agencies have created it, use plenty of white space!

(QUOTE)“Partnerships can be useful for brand awareness,
even if they don’t make you money as such.”(/QUOTE)
Karen Hanton, Toptable

Look Into The Page

A branding secret often not discussed, is to always have the images on your page facing into the page. This is actually a personal bug bear of mine and so many top websites still have people facing out of the page.

An image of a person looking ‘out’ of the page takes your visitor’s eye away from your content.

A minor issue, I know, but with all marketing material – including your website pages - it is always best to keep the reader’s eye focused on the content within the page.

If you only have an image with a person looking out, it is so easily rectified.

You can either move the image to the other side of the page or you can right click the image in Windows Explorer to open and edit it with Microsoft Office Picture Manager.

Here’s how you can flip an image in Picture Manager.

  • Click on ‘Edit Picture’
  • This opens a sidebar, click on ‘rotate and flip’
  • This opens a new sidebar, click ‘flip horizontal’
  • The image now faces the other way

Page Layout Golden Rules

  • Use sub headings
  • Use bullets
  • Break up paragraphs
  • Use web fonts: Arial, Times New Roman, Verdana
  • Be clear about your page goals
  • Update little and often - in bite size chunks
  • Ensure images face into the page

Hopefully you found this helpful.  Why not have a read through some of the many articles on starting up your home business?

Font Space offers you a mammoth range of free fonts for your logo and brand: www.fontspace.com

Our How To section includes articles on how to name and host your home business website, how to set and acheive goals, how to find a home business mentor and many more. 

Paula Wynne is the award-winning entrepreneur of social networking site, iHubbub, and author of ‘Create A Successful Website’ and Pimp My Site.

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