I bet there’s at least one blogger whose blog posts you can spot from a mile away. They have a similar format every week, you know that they’ll use a fun image at the beginning of the blog post, with recognizable colors, their logo, etc.
That’s because that person/company has branded the crap out of their blog! From the layout to the colors to the images – it’s all strategically styled to increase recognition and ease of reading.
And this week, we’re going to set you up to do the same with branded images.
Just to be clear – this is how to create branded images for your blog posts. If you need help with your overall brand style, I highly recommend Becky Kinkead’s Learn Logo + Brand Design e-course (it’s how I created my fun logo and branding.
Think about your favorite brands – they have images that you probably can recognize right away without even having to see a word, right?
That’s because they brand those babies! They consistently use the same type of photo (dark, light, black & white), graphics (flat, bright, cartoonish), font, layout of text and logo, etc. They place their logo or website URL on every photo (sometimes the only “text” is their logo). These brands have been consistent in how they present themselves via images, and it’s paid off.
Brand recognition is real, and images will help you get there.
Branded images also just look better for your site. What’s more appealing, hodgepodge or organization? It’s like choosing between the two images below – which one makes you want to take our your wallet?
Branding images also reduces the amount of work readers need to put into reading your posts.
If you consistently place your text in the same spot for every image, your loyal readers’ eyes will always go there, saving them time and thinking power, and leaving them with more mental energy to absorb your content.
They’ll also recognize it when they’re scrolling through Facebook or Twitter – “hey, that’s a post from ‘Your Company’! I’ll click on that.“
For example, I checked out ByRegina.com earlier this week, and really loved the pattern/branding she has for her images. Take a look:
See how easy those are to read? That image layout equals = ByRegina.com.Branding your images is one of the simplest and most effective ways to brand your blog. Click To Tweet
Deciding on a branded image
Now that we’ve established the importance of branding your images, let’s talk about the best ways to do it.
Each blog post should have at least 1 branded image that is used as a thumbnail when you’re sharing your content on social media. This image should typically include the name of the blog post in the image, that way it stands out and people know what they’re about to read.
SO, you can have visuals, such as laptops, people, nature, animals, clowns, etc.
OR you can create images that use your brand colors and have solid backgrounds.
This is a personal choice! Do whatever you prefer (you can always change it later if you decide you’re not feeling it).
From there, decide either:
The colors you’ll use (I suggest no more than 2 main colors, and 1 accent color – you’re advertising your brand, not a rainbow).
If you’re using background visuals, think about your business type – do you help people with their finances, their websites, social media, relationships, etc? Think about what images will resonate with them.
Then decide if you want those images to be part of the main text, or used as background. This will help determine if the images have a brighter, darker, or more opaque appearance. You can also go the route I do, and make the images blurry so that they’re fairly decipherable and draw people in, but do not detract from the text on the image.
Also decide if you want your images to be fun + lighthearted, peaceful, serious, etc. The vibe of these images should fully represent your vibe.
Making the image
I use Share as Image to create mine. It’s a paid service, but I got a great deal from AppSumo.com (they run different deals all the time, check it out).
So each week, after I’ve written my blog post I’ll open my Share as Image app and create my image. Here’s a quick preview of the process:
Voila! The process for creating my branded images each week. Take a look and behold the consistency:
I’ll admit, I could get hella consistent and use only specific images for specific topics (like one image for web development, another one for web content), to even further commit to branding. It’s an idea I’ve been playing with, and it would save me time each week rather than always picking out a new image. (I think I’ve just convinced myself to do it.)
Alright. Now you’re on the straight and narrow to beautifully branded images! Be sure to tag me on Twitter (@tiffdotcom) after you’ve made your true-to-you branded images.
In case you need a hand, I’ve created a handy PDF to map out your new image template.
Download the Brand Your Blog Images PDF!
Want even more tips on how to upgrade your blog to pro status?
» CHECK OUT: From “Meh” to MEOW: Transform your blog for hot profits on a bootstrap budget. «
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