PIXIE’s Guide to Becoming An Etsy Extraordinaire, Or How To Run a Successful Online Shop
Hello! This is part four of a 10-part series on running your own online shop. Find the other posts here!
#4. Know Thyself: Brand Building
I’ve mentioned branding a little before but, as it’s such a humongous part of all this, it’s definitely deserving of it’s own post. I feel I need to stress that this is all my personal opinion and, with something like branding, that is so personal to each individual business, it’s definitely going to be different for everyone.
Branding can be kind of heavy and involved and, if like me you don’t have a Marketing degree, might leave your head a bit hazy. It has the habit of seeming really simple and straightforward: know your vibe, man; but that’s not too helpful when you’re trying to keep everything cohesive.
Building your own brand is about deciding on your niche and developing an aesthetic that makes your shop immediately recognisable and ties everything together. For me, this has involved realising what the basics of my products are. I’m all about bright colours, pop art and having a sense of humour, so I try and put that into everything I create and the ways I market it too. If you have a vintage shabby chic look, take photos with teacups and doily’s as props. If you’re all about gamer chic use a retro 8-bit font. When you know your core aesthetic make sure you project through little details like this.
Make branding something adaptable that can develop with you and your shop. You might be obsessed with medieval headgear right now but a few years down the line you’re probably going to come to regret putting all your effort in building your brand around it (unless, you make amazing medieval headgear, in that case, go right ahead!). Keep it to colours, fonts, photo styling, even lighting can become a signature to your brand.
I found it helpful to have a bit of a Pinterest session, where I pinned all the things I wanted my own brand to emulate and then, whenever I was working on my shop I’d check the board to keep me on track.
Branding is all about knowing your core ethics and projecting them through all aspects. Although this might sound a bit daunting and broad it generally just comes down to following your instinct to what you think will work and going with it.