A brand is so much more than logos and fonts, and isn’t a concept exclusive only big name companies.
Think of some of the more popular artists or creators you follow. What do you remember first when you think of them? The colours? The style? The artist’s funny profile picture? Whether it’s obvious or not, they all have a brand.
In addition to defining of your personal image, your brand could convince people why they should follow you, why they should engage with your art, and it could open you up to a wider audience.
What Is A Brand?
Your brand isn’t limited to just your art style or a certain product. In this online space of so many social media platforms of self-expression, it’s you. Your values, your expertise, your personality, your lifestyle. Or at least what you decide to broadcast of yourself. If people can relate to you, they can relate to the things you create.
You may sometimes hear that arguments of “separating the art from the artist” but that doesn’t reflect how people consume artwork socially today. Now more than ever, people like to support things that they personally find relatable and relevant.
Whether you have consciously cultivated it or not, you already have a personal brand, and you’re contributing to it with every piece of art you post and even every meme you share.
So since you already have a brand, you might as well own it.
What Can You Do With A Brand?
Your reputation can help you speak to a wider community who appreciates what you and your art have to offer.
A well-defined brand will set a precedent for what followers should expect when they follow and support your work, whether that’s simply engaging with and sharing it on social media, all the way to buying your merchandise or supporting you through an ongoing sponsorship or subscription.
In building your brand, you discover what makes you different and embrace it. If you highlight these core values about yourself, it will attract followers who will find you relatable.
The more of these like-minded followers you attract, the more your content will be shared, and the more like-minded followers you’ll attract and so on.
Once you’ve gained a strong reputation for yourself and more visibility for your work, support and funding for your projects will be more accessible, allowing for more opportunities to distribute and monetise your art.
Is it really that easy?
But it is almost is that simple.
So How Do I Build My Brand As An Artist or Creator
The one thing successful small businesses will tell you about branding is that you need consistency.
It means considering how each post will remind people why they follow you. At its most basic, it includes regularly posting your own content, in addition to sharing content that aligns with and compliments your brand voice. Often that means asking yourself if what you want to share is what you want people to follow you for before you hit that “retweet” button.
Brand value is essential but practically immeasurable. Loyalty doesn’t always translate directly into vanity metrics like follows and likes, so it’s difficult to see immediate results and a correlation with what you post. Dont be discouraged if your brand isn’t sticking immediately. We can all think of a talented artist who posts work that doesn’t get as much recognition as it should—it’s possible the artist hadn’t been as consistent in offering the content that would build their brand.
Conversely, there could be very popular artist who’s social profile could seemingly look like a jumble of unrelated works and topics but it could almost always be pinpointed back to (at most) a few main themes that are posted regularly. Each time they post, they’re building a brand that their followers connect with on a personal level.
Since branding is such an online exercise, it’s important to remember that you are ultimately trying to build a connection with an audience of human individuals. Being consistent in your communication is fundamental to that connection.
And that voice at the back of your head is absolutely right.
You should post more.