The Power of Typography – 4 Tips For Shaping the Identity of Your Business

The Power of Typography – 4 Tips For Shaping the Identity of Your Business

The Power of Typography – 4 Tips For Shaping the Identity of Your Business

The power of type

Welcome to the captivating world of design, where every visual element plays a pivotal role in shaping your brand’s identity. Today, we’re delving into the captivating realm of typography and its profound impact on your branding journey. Choosing the right fonts is more than just aesthetics – it’s about expressing your brand’s personality, connecting with your audience, and leaving an indelible mark. So, let’s embark on this typographic adventure together!

1. The Essence of Typography in Branding

Typography, the art of arranging type, is an art form that goes beyond mere letters and words. It’s a language in itself, speaking volumes about your brand’s tone, style, and values. Just like the right words can leave a lasting impression, the perfect font has the power to evoke emotions, build trust, and establish a distinctive identity for your business. From bold and modern to elegant and timeless, typography is a creative tool that gives your brand its own voice.

2. Creating Cohesive Branding through Typeface Selection

Consistency is key when it comes to branding, and typography plays a crucial role in creating a unified visual experience. Imagine a world where every brand used the same font – chaos! By thoughtfully selecting a primary and complementary typeface, you create a harmonious brand palette that speaks in one voice across all touchpoints. We take pride in meticulously curating typography that aligns seamlessly with your brand’s essence, ensuring every communication reinforces your unique identity.

3. Evoking Emotions with Typeface Personalities

Typography is an art of expression, where each font carries its own personality. Serif or sans-serif, script or display – each style exudes a distinct vibe which is why we feel it is so important to understand the nuances of typography psychology and how different typefaces evoke emotions. Whether you seek authority, warmth, elegance, or playfulness, we’ll guide you to the perfect font that resonates with your target audience and strengthens your brand message.

4. Readability and User Experience

In the digital age, where attention spans are fleeting, readability is paramount. Clear, legible typography ensures that your message is effortlessly conveyed to your audience, be it on your website, marketing materials, or social media graphics. It’s not just about aesthetics; it’s about providing a seamless user experience that keeps your audience engaged and immersed in your brand story.


Typography is more than just picking pretty fonts; it’s about strategically crafting an immersive brand experience. At Powdermonkey Design, we’re passionate about the art of typography and its profound impact on your branding journey. From choosing the perfect typeface to creating a cohesive visual language, our design wizards are here to bring your brand’s story to life, letter by letter. Join us in unlocking the magic of typography and watch your brand soar to new heights!

Ready to embark on your typographic adventure? Contact us today, and let’s craft a brand identity that speaks volumes in every letter.

Let us be your guide in the world of design.

Marketing Funnel Magic

Marketing Funnel Magic

Marketing Funnel Magic

Web design Adelaide HIlls

Welcome back to the Powdermonkey Design blog!

Today, we’re diving into a topic that holds immense potential for small businesses looking to optimise their marketing strategies: marketing funnels.

As a small business owner, you’re constantly seeking innovative ways to attract, engage, and convert your target audience. Well, look no further!

In this blog post, we’ll demystify the concept of marketing funnels and show you how they can propel your business to new heights.

1: Understanding Marketing Funnels

To embark on this exciting journey, it’s essential to grasp the fundamentals of marketing funnels.

Think of a funnel as a visual representation of the customer journey, from initial awareness to the final conversion. It’s a systematic approach that strategically guides potential customers through each stage, nurturing them along the way and maximizing the likelihood of a successful conversion.

2: The Stages of a Marketing Funnel

Let’s break down the stages of a marketing funnel and explore how they work harmoniously to optimize your customer’s experience:

Awareness Stage: At the top of the funnel, your goal is to create awareness and capture the attention of potential customers. Utilize compelling content, social media campaigns, search engine optimization, and targeted advertisements to generate interest and bring prospects into your funnel.

Consideration Stage: Once you’ve caught their attention, it’s time to nurture and educate your potential customers. Provide valuable content, such as blog posts, videos, and webinars, that addresses their pain points and showcases your expertise. This builds trust and positions your business as a reliable solution.

Conversion Stage: This is where the magic happens! At this stage, you want to convert interested prospects into paying customers. Offer compelling incentives, such as limited-time discounts or free trials, and provide a seamless and user-friendly purchasing process to encourage conversions.

Retention Stage: The customer journey doesn’t end at the point of purchase. To foster customer loyalty and encourage repeat business, focus on providing exceptional post-purchase support, personalized communication, and valuable resources. Happy customers are more likely to become brand ambassadors and refer others to your business.

3: Benefits of Implementing Marketing Funnels for Small Businesses

Now that we’ve explored the anatomy of a marketing funnel, let’s delve into the benefits it offers to small businesses:

Targeted Approach: By segmenting your audience at each stage of the funnel, you can deliver personalized content and offers that resonate with their specific needs and interests.

Increased Conversion Rates: Marketing funnels are designed to optimize the customer journey, resulting in higher conversion rates and a healthier bottom line for your business.

Efficient Resource Allocation: By understanding where potential customers drop off in the funnel, you can identify areas that require improvement, streamline your marketing efforts, and allocate resources more effectively.

Data-Driven Decision Making: Marketing funnels provide valuable insights into customer behavior, allowing you to make informed decisions and fine-tune your strategies for optimal results.


Congratulations! You’ve now embarked on the exciting journey of implementing marketing funnels in your small business.

Remember, the key to success lies in understanding your audience, delivering valuable content, and providing a seamless customer experience throughout the funnel.

By leveraging the power of marketing funnels, you’ll be well on your way to attracting, engaging, and converting your target audience like never before.

Stay tuned for more insightful tips and strategies from Powdermonkey Design. Until next time, happy funneling!

6 Ways to Make Your Email Marketing Rock!

6 Ways to Make Your Email Marketing Rock!

6 Ways to Make Your Email Marketing Rock!

email marketing tips

Email marketing has long been a key tool for small business owners looking to connect with their audience and drive sales. In today’s digital age, email continues to play a critical role in business communication, offering a cost-effective way to reach a large and targeted audience. Whether you are looking to promote a new product, drive traffic to your website, or simply build relationships with your customers, email marketing is a powerful tool that can help you achieve your goals. 

So, how can small business owners get the best open rates on their emails? Here are a few tips:

Know your audience:

Before you begin sending emails, it is essential to understand your audience and what they want to receive from you. This can help you to craft a message that resonates with your audience and leads to higher open rates. A great way of achieving this is by segmenting your email list. With segmented lists you can send targeted messages to your subscribers based on their interests and needs to help increase engagement and open rates.

Personalise your emails:

Personalising your emails by addressing the recipient by name and referencing previous interactions can help to increase engagement, make your emails more appealing and build your connection to your audience.

Use a subject line that is attention-grabbing:

Your subject line is the first thing that your recipient will see, so it is critical that it is compelling enough to make them want to open your email and won’t land you in their spam folder. Use strong verbs and avoid using all caps or excessive punctuation which spam filters can interpret as yelling. Make sure your subject line is clear, concise, and to the point – around 50 characters or less.

Make your content valuable:

 Once your recipient opens your email, you need to ensure that the content inside is valuable and relevant to them. Offer helpful tips, provide exclusive offers, or share industry news that is relevant to your audience. Use engaging visuals to help grab attention and make your message more memorable.

Dont forget about the design:

 A well-designed layout can help improve the overall look and feel of your EDM, making it more appealing and engaging to your target audience. Here are some key points to consider when designing the layout of your EDM:

  • Keep it simple: A simple, clean, and uncluttered layout can help improve readability and make it easier for recipients to focus on your message. Try and keep your most important information in the first third of the email.
  • Use visuals: Incorporating visuals such as images, videos, graphics, or charts can help make your EDM more engaging and memorable. 
  • Make it mobile-friendly: Many people check their emails on mobile devices, so make sure your EDM is optimised for mobile viewing, with a responsive design that adjusts to the size of the recipient’s screen. 
  • Use contrasting colours: Use contrasting colours to create visual interest and make important elements of your EDM stand out, such as calls to action or links.
  • Consider white space: Use white space effectively to create a visually appealing and easy-to-read layout that doesn’t overload the recipient with information.
  • Include a clear call to action: Make sure your EDM has a clear and compelling call to action, and that it’s easy for recipients to take the next step.

Test and refine:

Continuously test and refine your email marketing strategy to see what is working and what is not. This can help you to make necessary adjustments and improve your open rates over time. Some key areas will be your subject line testing, A/B testing to see which of two versions of your email performs better, render testing to ensure your email looks good across a variety of devices and link testing to ensure your links take your reader where they need to go.

In conclusion, email marketing is a critical tool for small business owners looking to connect with their audience and drive sales. By following the tips outlined above, you can increase your open rates, build strong relationships with your customers, and achieve your business goals.

#marketing #emailmarketing #graphicdesign #smallbusiness #edm #creativeforthepeople #powdermonkeydesign

How To Handle Social Media Haters Like a Pro

How To Handle Social Media Haters Like a Pro

How To Handle Social Media Haters Like a Pro

social media management & content creation

The 8 must-have strategies for every social media admin

As a breed, small business owners are really passionate about what they do.

It’s that passion that drives us to put so much of ourselves into our businesses. But it can also drive us crazy the moment we read a negative comment online.

Thanks to social media we have never been more accessible to our audience and that is great, for the most part. But how do we cope when the comments online aren’t so positive?

So many of us see red and move straight into getting defensive, which is understandable – we care so much about our business. But when we let these emotions drive our responses online, we can quickly find ourselves in trouble. Social media moves fast and you need to make sure you keep things positive and stay in control.

To help things run smoothly we always recommend creating a Social Media Management Plan. Not only does this ensure you meet your marketing goals but it allows you to create an action plan for managing negative comments before they happen.

Another really helpful tactic is to assemble your team. Appoint a staff member or members who are in charge of social media management. If you have a larger business you might then assign people from different departments to different types of comment or complaint. This allows the social media manager to escalate complaints to the person best able to deal with them, which helps keep response times to a minimum.

So, where to start? Read on for our 8 top tips for handling social media haters! Then check out our downloadable Planner to start crafting responses to – and creating opportunities from – negative comments.

1. Don’t delete or ignore the comment

It may seem like a good idea but the issue won’t go away when the comment does. Removing a negative comment takes away that person’s ‘voice’ and can create further bad feeling.

Acknowledging a negative post helps avoid disgruntled users doubling-down on the negative comments, calling you out publicly or taking their angst to another platform where you have no control over the narrative.

There are exceptions to this rule, however. Extremely inappropriate or offensive comments. Harassment or trolling – even after you have worked to disarm the situation. In such cases you may report the behaviour where possible, delete the comment and then block the user from your page.


2. Do respond as quickly as you can

You want to get on top of negative comments as quickly as you can. People love interacting in the comments section and if left unattended for too long you may find things start to snow ball. Always make your initial response public, this will help show others you are listening and dedicated to finding a resolution. As soon as possible, you can take the conversation offline and continue to resolve things privately.


3. Don’t panic or let negative comments scare you

Remember, this isn’t the end of the world, this is an opportunity that you can embrace. It’s the perfect way of learning what your customers need, want and expect from you so try to roll with it! Take whatever feedback you can get and most importantly, act on it.


4. Do keep your responses calm and sincere

Use your active listening so that you can understand the root of the issues and empathise with the user’s point of view. They clearly went to the trouble of making the comment so it’s important you follow through on your end and mean it. Always thank them for expressing their feelings and giving you an opportunity to find a resolution.

It’s also worth thinking about your brand when crafting a response to online comments. The ‘tone’ you use – as well as things like whether you use emojis, or whether you sign your response are all part of your branding, so they need to be considered, consistent and audience-appropriate.


5. Don’t give a generic response or an excuse

We want to make the person feel heard and understood in the situation. Generic responses may come off as insincere and lead to further mistrust of your brand, so be sure to make your responses feel personal (but still professional).

If you find posting about a particular topic or product tends to trigger the same old comments, you may find it useful to script some basic responses before the post goes live. Just make sure these are structured in a way that makes them easily to personalise or adapt as needed. Then you can feel cool, calm and on top of the situation – which is always a plus! To learn more about how to script responses, download our Social Media Response Planner.

Even though you may be in the right, excuses can be perceived as you explaining away the complaint or making it invalid. Customers won’t buy it and it can hurt your brand. And if there does happen to be some truth to the comment that’s been posted – now’s the time to own your part in the situation! A polite apology and an assurance that you will contact the user privately to resolve the problem can go a long way.


6. Do take the opportunity to give yourself a plug – if it’s there!

When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade, right? Well the same goes for negative comments on social media. If someone is expressing doubts about your product or service, now’s the time to clear those doubts up by mentioning some of the relevant features or benefits. Just remember to keep it friendly and light – time to fire up that active listening again!


7. Do follow through

So you’ve got through the tough conversation, apologised and explained what steps you are going to take to resolve the issue. It’s really important that you don’t drop the ball here. When dealing with a genuine complaint, make sure you follow through until the issue is truly resolved.


8. Don’t forget about the good comments

Always take the time to acknowledge the positive comments you receive too. A like, a smiley face or a quick thank you comment can go such a long way. All relationships need nurturing and this a fantastic way to look after those followers who are engaged and positive about your brand.

Plus, responding to comments is an excellent way to help your post’s organic reach on social media.


At the end of the day, social media has brought businesses closer than ever to their customers – past, present and future. The real trick is to see this closeness as an opportunity rather than a threat.


#hatersgonnahate #yougotthis #socialmediamanagement #socialmediastrategy #smallbusiness #microbusiness #businessstrategy #smallbusinessmarketing #creativeforthepeople #powdermonkeydesign

What’s The Deal With Email?

What’s The Deal With Email?

What’s The Deal With Email?

How does it work and how do I get it up and running on my device?

Email is ubiqutous. We all use it. Plus it’s been around a really long time.

Maybe it’s even a little too ubiqutous – it’s one of those things we all use every day, without really considering how it actually works. And why should we? No small business owner has the time to delve into any subject they don’t need to. We’ve got enough going on!

But email can figure really significantly when it comes to having a new website designed, or re-designing an old site. Also, an understanding of the bare basics of email can help when it comes time to start using that brand new email account you got with your website hosting.

So, here’s the deal (without the un-necessary detail!)

Click to learn more:

Understanding email addresses

An email address consists of two parts. The bit before the @ symbol is the user name. Everything after the @ is the domain name.

You can choose any user name you like, provided it is not in use by any other addresses at your domain name.

Just like a traditional letter with a name and street address on it, this information will be used to direct the email to the correct recipient.

What is a domain?

A domain name identifies a website and is used to locate it on the Internet. Domain names must be purchased and renewed yearly. You can choose any domain name you like, provided no one else already owns it.

What is a mail server?

A mail server is a computer system that handles the sending or receiving of emails. There are different mail servers for sending and receiving.

Sending mail servers check the email address and search the Internet to locate the correct receiving mail server.

Mail servers use sets of rules called ‘protocols’ to communicate with each other.

What is email hosting?

Email hosting is server space dedicated to storing your emails. Often email hosting is packaged and sold together with web hosting.

What is webmail?

‘Webmail’ describes accessing your email account directly on the mail server via a web browser (such as Chrome).

Webmail allows you to view your email from any device by entering the URL (web address) of your webmail and logging in.

However, without an internet connection, you will not be able to access your webmail account, including any old emails, contacts or drafts you might have saved.

Webmail is already configured and ready to go as soon as your email hosting account is set up.

What is an email program?

Email programs or apps are software that a user installs on their computer or device. This software allows their device to download emails from the server so that they can be saved on the device itself, and accessed via the program’s interface.

An email program allows you to access old emails, contacts and drafts without being connected to the Internet, although new emails won’t be sent or received until the connection is restored.

In order to use an email program you must first install your chosen software on your device, and then give it access to your mail server. 

The process of setting up or ‘configuring’ your email program varies depending on which one you choose, and normally involves entering your email address, password and protocols and port numbers for both incoming and outgoing mail servers.

I want to use an email program. How do I set it up?

If you decide you want to use an email program (also called an email ‘client’), you will need to provide the email program with the information it needs to connect to your mail server and access your email. 

This is done by creating a user account within your email program, and adding the correct configuration settings. 

At Powdermonkey Design, we will send you these settings (as well as a link to access your webmail) after your email accounts have been set up and tested. 

The information that needs to be added in order to configure an email program isn’t particularly human-readable. It also needs to entered perfectly in order to work. Which can mean things sometimes get a bit tricky!

If you have tried setting up your email user account on an email program or app and it is not working, there are a few steps you can take to try and troubleshoot it:

1. Start with your webmail
Because your webmail accesses your email directly on the mail server, it is the best possible starting place for troubleshooting. If you are able to send and receive emails using your webmail, then your email hosting account is working.

2. Double (and triple) check all the account settings in your email program
It is well worth casting a really close eye over all those pesky numbers, letters and symbols to make sure there’s not a digit out of place. If they appear to be character-perfect and your email program is still not working, try re-typing the account settings and re-saving. Email programs can be tricky beasts, sometimes corrupting the data entered in these fields, despite it looking A-OK at the user end.

3. Re-create the user account within your email program
This one is just like the old ‘switch it off and then on again’. Sometimes deleting the user account you are trying to create within your email program and starting over can kick things into action.

4. Check the online help resources
Don’t be afraid to take advantage of the online troubleshooting resources provided by your email program’s developers. These can usually be accessed via a ‘help’ menu item within your email program. Searching on Google will also yield a range of great tutorials that can provide assistance specific to the email program you are using.

5. Try a different email program
There are a bunch of different email programs out there and you might just find that simply changing it up works wonders. For example, I once had all sorts of trouble configuring Outlook to send and receive my emails, but found that Thunderbird worked first time.

6. Call in an IT professional
If all else fails, contacting an IT specialist for assistance will solve the problem quickly and painlessly. With software skills and knowledge over and above that of the average punter (web designers included!) IT professionals are experienced at diagnosing and solving problems on a wide range of programs and platforms. Many are also set up to log in remotely or make on-site visits, making problem solving on your device quick and easy. Plus, making contact with an IT specialist is an investment in the future – because every small business should have a relationship with a good IT person!


#webdesign #emailconfig #emailclient #webhosting #emailhosting #emailtroubleshooting #smallbusiness #creativeforthepeople #powdermonkeydesign

Your Ultimate Branding Checklist

Your Ultimate Branding Checklist

Your Ultimate Branding Checklist

Your Ultimate Branding Checklist

A step-by-step guide for small business startups

If you’re starting up a small business, I know you’ve got a lot on your plate right now. And you probably have a lot of money going out and not much coming in yet.

It’s a hectic time, and I am guessing branding is one of the many things on your to do list. Maybe it’s near the bottom because it seems less urgent than other tasks. Maybe it’s even been tossed in the too hard basket because you don’t know where to start.

Branding can be a huge exercise, involving applying design and marketing expertise to every layer of the public face of your business.

But for those of us starting lean and keen, it can also be a case of knowing what’s essential, and what’s nice to have. What to do now, and what to roll out later. What you can DIY – and when it’s best to call in the professionals.

Follow the steps in my Ultimate Branding Checklist to get your business ready and raring to go! I have also created a downloadable version, which you can use to mark off your progress and record important info about your brand.

1. First, you need a logo

The good news is – step 1 is one of the most fun ones on the list! But it’s also the one where you really need to do some soul searching when it comes to DIY.

If you choose to design yourself (or have your niece who’s learning Photoshop in school do it) you need to make sure not only that you have those mad design skills, but also a good understanding of how the technical side of print and web graphics works. It’s why I would say that if you hire a professional for any part of your branding process, it should be your logo.

A professional graphic designer will be able to provide your logo in a range of file formats, resolutions and colourspaces, to suit the full range of print and digital applications. This will save you having to spend money down the track having your logo re-drawn so it can be printed properly. It will also save you from having your logo look dodgy on things when you use it – think pixellation, weird cropping, or an annoying white box around it when you’d rather have a coloured background.

If you can afford it, you should also consider having your logo designer create a style guide for your brand. A well designed style guide specifies typefaces, colour palettes and graphic elements as well as alternate versions of your logo. It’s an investment that keeps on giving, especially if you plan to do your own marketing in-house.

A good logo design should be one of the first things you do when starting up a business. Partly because logos can be a pain to change down the track. That’s not to say it can’t be done, but if you have built any sort of brand recognition amongst your customers, a drastic change can be damaging.

But apart from that – you will be surprised at how often that pesky old logo keeps turning up on old forms, online directories and other people’s websites! Getting a professional looking logo right from the get-go means you can then start using it in all your branding and marketing activities as you roll them out.

2. Set up a profile on Google My Business

This one is definitely an essential – and has the added bonus of being an easy and totally free essential! Whoop whoop!

Having a Google My Business profile means that when someone googles your business name – as well as any relevant results Google returns – they see a dedicated listing for your business. The listing includes all of the info you add to your GMB profile, and can include photos, posts, opening times, offers and reviews from your customers.

This is a fantastic boon for businesses who are not yet at the stage where they can afford a dedicated website, as it allows you to get an online presence for free. But it is also a must for businesses who do have a website, as a GMB profile helps immensely with search engine optimisation – that is, getting your website to rank higher on Google searches. It also allows people to call or message you with a single click from their mobile, and contains a bunch of other great features that make for a perfect intro to online for small businesses.

3. Set up a Facebook Business Page

Facebook Business Pages are another free resource that your small business should definitely be tapping. Not really a social media kind of person? Well you are now.

In 2018 Sensis reported that 79% of Aussies were social media users, and of that group 94% used Facebook. It’s an audience that just can’t be ignored. But having a Business Page on the platform is not only useful for the ‘follow and like’ stuff, but it is also another great way for businesses without a website to create a legitimate web presence, and for those who do to improve their search engine rankings.

Creating a page is fairly simple, but make sure you create quality graphics for your profile icon and cover image that are consistent with the rest of your branding. Taking the time to write some good copy for the ‘About’ section is also a great idea. It’s an opportunity to describe what you so and to sell your business to your potential customers.

Oh – and make sure you post something, at least every now and then. Even if you are not ready or able to launch into a planned, goals-driven social media marketing campaign yet. Posting something relevant from time to time helps to let people stopping by via the search engines know that your page is current and you are open for business.

4. Business cards – they’re still a thing!

OK, so most of us aren’t meeting face-to-face at the moment, but the time will come again. Be prepared for that time with a snazzy business card.

It’s amazing how enduring the humble business card has been in this digital age. They are used extensively in networking and business-to-business situations. They are fabulous for jotting down appointment times in service-based industries. But if you design your card cleverly, it can also economically double as signage, packaging or a marketing tool.

Whether you decide to go with a pro or DIY, the options for business card design are almost endless. If you do need to DIY, this is one of the times when you will be glad you got a good quality designer to create your logo. Perfect logo artwork makes using online templates much less frustrating, and ensures the end result is flawless. And yeah, I say this a lot, but don’t forget to keep your cards consistent with everything else to be sure your branding is on point.

5. Industry-based essentials

Depending on your industry, there are a couple of extra essentials you need to take care of at this point.

If you produce a product, now is the time to design your packaging. Packaging can form a significant part of the cost per unit, especially for luxury brands who use high-end materials, printing and finishing techniques to package their products.

For start ups, however, packaging is often something created on the office printer and assembled at the kitchen table.

Packaging is necessary in the sense that the product needs to be wrapped or contained. But it is also an essential source of information about the product and your business, as well as a huge marketing opportunity.

So much of the decision making when buying rests on the visual appeal of the product. This doesn’t mean that it can’t be done well on a shoestring, and it’s another moment when a little bit of professional graphic design can go a long way.

For example, investing in a professionally designed template that you can adapt and print yourself is one great way to get home-made labels that look the biz. Or having a designer create your logo and a branding style guide which you can follow to DIY packaging glory. A good packaging designer should be able to put their knowledge of print and production to work for you, so you get a solution tailored to your product and budget.

The other industry-based essential is for those who have a shopfront. You’re gonna need signage. And you are definitely going to need a professional for this one.

Sign writers are amazing professionals whose focus is the creation and installation of signage. Their knowledge covers a huge range of materials, construction and printing techniques. A good sign writer can provide advice as to what signage you might need, as well as any hoops you may have to jump through with regard to council permits, etc.

Design work can either be done by your graphic designer or the signwriter themselves – but it will definitely need a bit of professional know-how. When briefing your sign writer, make sure they are aware of any existing branding you have in place, such as business cards, so that they can utilise similar colours and typefaces where possible.

6. Get a domain name

There’s no need to wait until you are ready to build a website. Buying a domain name as part of the process of setting up your business allows you to make sure you own the most relevant one right from the start.

Domain names need to be paid for by the year but are cheap and simple to register – the hardest thing is coming up with the perfect one! There are tonnes of registrars out there to choose from, just check out the web to find the one you like best. Or drop Powdermonkey Design a line – I’d be more than happy to help.

Another great advantage to having your own domain name is it means you can create your own, vastly more professional, email address @yourdomain.

This is often done when setting up a website, because you get email hosting with most web hosting plans. But if you are still a long way off from having your own website, it is well worth looking into email hosting plans. In fact, if you have a Microsoft 365 Business Plan, you will have email hosting already available to you. Having a custom email address is a branding must, and will give your business a huge aura of legitimacy and trust.

7. Create an email signature

It’s a sneaky little thing that can have a big impact on your branding. The email signature. It’s an opportunity to add another layer of professionalism and legitimacy to your business. It can also be a chance to spruik your website and social profiles by providing links directly to them.

Setting up your own email signature is quick and easy. The main thing to know is that signatures created within your email client are going to display differently from device to device. Some might show the signature larger; some smaller. Missing images are common, either because of broken links or users opting to block them in their settings.

When designing your own signature, ensure that all of the text elements of the signature are actually text. Don’t be tempted to create a JPEG that includes your name and all your contact details – when this image fails to download, your correspondents will be left wondering who just emailed them.

Another useful tip is to pick a common typeface for your signature. Like one of the ones that shipped with your computer when it was brand new. This will help make sure that for most users your signature is appearing as intended.

An alternative to the DIY email signature is to purchase an HTML signature. Just like a website, these signatures contain code that provides the device receiving the email with instructions on how to render the visual aspects. This means your signature gets to the other end looking just the way you want it. A professionally designed HTML email signature is a nice thing to add-on when you are having your logo done. But a DIY version does a great job when you are starting out lean, as long as you design it with care.

8. It’s website time!

Finally the big kahuna. The website all of your own. A website is definitely a business branding essential, but it is also one that involves some outlay of time and / or money. Which is why it is all the way down here at number 8.

By utilising free options like Google My Business and Facebook Business Pages, startups can begin trading without this outlay. This means more time to develop your products and services, decide on what you need from a website, and to establish cash flow.

If you are running an ecommerce business, a website of your own might become more of a priority than it is for others. But you may still choose to start up with as little outlay as possible by leveraging online selling platforms like Ebay or Etsy.

There are so many options when it comes to getting a website. The choices run the whole gamut from freebie website builders that come with your hosting, to hiring a developer to create a completely bespoke site. Choosing the best web design solution comes down to assessing your own skill level and the amount of time you have available to do it. Then weighing this up against your budget. If you need a bit of a hand with planning your website, I have put together a nifty checklist and downloadable Website Planner to help.

You can create a DIY website pretty cheaply, but you will need to set aside a lot of time. Both for initial design and for regular maintenance going forward. There are some really slick DIY web building apps out there that offer ease of use and cool templates, but you will pay a premium for them. This can be well worth it, however, if you need to make a lot of content changes to your site and want to keep things as nimble as possible.

Even professional website design covers a lot of ground. You can choose from marketing experts who create sites with a focus on SEO and traffic. Graphic designers who place an emphasis on the look of the site and the user experience. Developers who are masters of functionality, security and all things back-end. Like any big purchase, it’s just a case of working out what is most important to you and your business.

Building a brand takes time. By keeping it front of mind, even when you first start out, it can end up being one of the most valuable assets your business has.

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