99designs or 99 problems? Why investing in your brand will save you in the long run


We’ve talked about the foundational pieces that make up every brand and how they work together. All seven are essential. You can’t just pick and choose which ones to include. If you do, you’ll end up with a disjointed brand that doesn’t really connect with your dream clients.

It takes time to put all these pieces together. With my clients, we go through an in depth discovery process to uncover all the pieces we need to make their brand work together.


The back and forth communication is key. We go through several rounds of revisions and refining to get the right look and feel. That’s after an extensive research phase that helps me understand the values of the client, the industry they’re working in, and the audience they’re trying to reach.

But not every branding strategist will do this and it shows in your final brand. The wrong contractor can make the whole project go south.

Think about a logo marketplace like 99designs. You’re not getting a brand there — you’re getting an order taker.

You have to tell them everything you need. You have to do all the hard work of figuring out how to communicate your brand visually.

But unless you’re an experienced creative director, you probably don’t know how to go through that process. You’re an expert in photography or coaching or interior design — not branding and graphic design.

But logo design sites and cheap freelancers assume you already know all the foundational stuff. Instead of going that route, you’re much better off figuring out your branding foundations before you hire someone.

When you’re just getting started with your brand, you need to go through the process of figuring out what makes you different.

But you’re not going to get that with a designer that just asks you what colors and fonts you like. They focus on only the surface stuff, not the deep work like your brand values or your ideal clients.

The Practical Brand is a DIY branding e-course for creative entrepreneurs that’s designed to walk you through the same process I use with 1:1 clients.

At every step of the way I’m there to guide you. You’re not on your own to figure out everything. I’ll walk you through the steps you need to take to create a successful brand.