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How to Strategically Choose the Right Colors & Fonts for your brand - ep. 4

Updated: 19 minutes ago

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I have something fun for you today. We will be talking about how to choose colors and fonts for your branding. With so many options out there I want to help you narrow down your choices so you can make intentional designs and be able to strategically choose the right colors & fonts for your brand. Let's dive in

Choosing your colors and fonts is super important when it comes to branding it's what you're going to use over and over again on your social media graphics, website, forms, and everything, and anything that you use for your business.

If you don't know what branding is check out episode one so that you can get the most out of this podcast. Just so we're on the same page a super quick recap is that branding is the personality of your business. It's the overall encompassing experience when you interact with a business. There are a lot of parts of a brand but in particular, right now we are talking about visual branding which is everything from your logo to your colors, fonts, graphics, images, etc.

Today we are going to be talking about colors and fonts and how to choose them intentionally so you can create a brand that not only feels aligned with you but also resonates with your ideal customer. You want to be able to choose the right colors and fonts so that you are attracting the kind of people you want to work with. Being able to attract the right people will also make your customers feel heard and understood. This will lead to more people trusting you and the more someone trusts you they will be more willing to buy from you. So let's get to it.

Before we choose our colors and fonts we need to know two things, our brand vibe, and our ideal customer. In episode 3 we talked about our brand vibe and how to find your signature style through a mood board. If you felt inspired to create a mood board that will definitely come in handy when we go to choose our fonts and colors.

Let's walk through what a brand vibe is again. Your brand vibe is 3 to 5 words that you want your customers to perceive your business as. It will narrow down our choices for choosing a font and color palette.

Then there's your ideal customer. Knowing who our ideal customer is vital because we want to be able to choose fonts and colors that will attract them.

Let's use an example so you can clearly see how this works.

Let's say you are a boudoir photographer and your brand vibe is sexy, moody, confident, and life-changing. Your ideal customers are females who want to be able to feel confident in their own skin. They need a refresher on how beautiful they are and they are willing to get out of their comfort zone to try something new and see themselves in a new light. They will also need to be located in or near your town and are probably between the ages of 20 and 45.

Choosing your Colors

Now that we have a solid foundation to go off of with our brand vibe and ideal customer let's start with choosing our colors. Referring to our brand vibe let's choose black to match that sexy moody look. Let's also go for a sultry red which screams confidence. We are going to be using black and red as our two main colors which will make up about 80-90% of our branding colors. Then for the accent colors let's go with grey, a shiny silver foil and an off white to stick with our sultry theme. What we just chose was a 5 color, color palette but know that it is also ok to have a single color, color palette. Take a look at Lyft for example their main color is hot pink and that's it. Simple but highly recognizable.

If you have a moodboard created go ahead and take a look at it and see if there's certain colors that pop up again and again. Consider using these colors for your color palette.

Choosing your fonts If you already have a logo depending on what the font is sometimes your logo font is a great option as one of your font choices. If you're not using your logo font as one of your font choices make sure that your font choice and your logo font look like they belong together.

Going back to our boudoir photography example script is always a great option for a feminine look just make sure that it doesn't have too many flushes and isn't too curvy which makes things un-legible. Keep in mind that you never want to use script as your main font. Serifed fonts are also a great choice, these are the fonts with the little feet at the end think of times new Roman, for the editorial look that screams feminine and can also come off with a lot of confidence.

A great place to look for free fonts is Google fonts. you can even search fonts through categories. Serif, Sans Serif, Display just to name a few or with font properties such as slant, thickness width. You can even compare different fonts against each other right on google fonts.

When you are narrowing down your final fonts be sure to keep your brand vibe and ideal customers in mind. Remember that your brand shouldn't solely be made with choices that only you like. It should be created with styles that your ideal customer can resonate with because your business is not for you, it's for your ideal customers. Of course, this doesn't mean that you should be choosing fonts that you don't like because if you don't like your branding then you won't use it. The perfect font is a mixture of what you like and something your clients can also resonate with.

Choose one font for your headers and subheads and one font for your body copy which should be a basic and simple font like Arial or Garamond since the body copy will be used most on the page you want people to easily be able to read it. You can also choose a third font as your accent font. I'll talk more about that later.

Now that we have both our colors and fonts how do we use them?

For color, you're going to use your color palette on everything. This means your social media graphics, website, business cards, pamphlets, everything. Use the black and red as your main colors so maybe the background of your website is black.

Pro tip: If you use a black background for sections of your website make sure to throw in some images and dark grays to create clear sections on your website so your website isn't a long single black page.

There's no strict rule but this is how I like to use my color palette: Main color: 80-90% of the time with the accent colors thrown in 10% of the time.

Here's an example. Let's say you're creating a social media post. The background is all black, the header text is white but is on top of a red banner and maybe there's silver foil frame in keeping it all together. Can you imagine the hiearchy of color? And remember there's no strict rule this is how I like to use my color palette. Maybe instead of using black as your background color you choose to use one of the darker grays that's fine too. However use your color palette just keep it consistent.

For fonts you should have chosen 1-2 fonts total. One font will be used as your header while the other will be used for your body copy. Pro tip your header should be the largest font size on the page, subhead the 2nd largest, and then your body copy should be the smallest font size. Make sure your body copy font is super easy to read I recommend something basic like Arial or Garamond. Make sure that it makes sense with your header font. For example, don't use a thin header font with a thick body copy font.

If you want you could also choose a 3rd font as your accent font which is normally something more decorative like a script that you can use to spice up your designs. If you do choose to use script, use it sparingly. If want to use it for headers I would make sure that only 1 to 3 words max are in script while the rest of the words are not. Use it the same way you would italicize certain words for emphasis.

Last minute thoughts

Be consistent and use your color palette and fonts for all your marketing materials. Website, social media, newsletters, printed materials everything. Every piece of marketing you make for your brand needs to look the same and use the same colors, and fonts. Brand consistency is what is going to help you look professional and trustworthy. Remember the more people can trust you the more confident they are to buy from you.

Legibility should always be chosen over aesthetics. I don't care how much you love a certain font, if no one can read it you're wasting your time.

The perfect brand is a combination of you and your ideal customers.

Here are the important facts to remember

1. Before you choose your fonts and color make sure you have your brand vibe picked out and know your ideal customer

2. Choose colors that match your brand vibe and make sense to your ideal customer

3. Choose 2-3 fonts that match your brand vibe, make sure they are legible

4. Use your color palette and fonts on all of your marketing materials over and over again for consistency

and that's all I have for you today. Thanks for tuning in, keep on making intentional choices and happy designing. Bye!


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