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What is brand strategy?

It is a common false-belief that businesses can get by just grabbing a logo from somewhere and moving on. I’ve even seen some businesses that don’t have a logo at all.


When we talk about T Swift’s brand, we’re not talking about her marketing—although her marketing moves have been really good.

Taylor’s marketing includes things like  jumping on relevant marketing trends, surprise album releases, collaborations, and fan engagement initiatives.

Her brand includes things like her core values, how she takes control of her narrative with lyrics and public statements, strong themes consistent throughout her work like empowerment, authenticity, and relatability.

Now…Let’s dive in further…




Taylor embodies personally everything her brand is. Her whole life is her logo. (It’s no wonder she blew up more than ever during the most recent “Eras Tour”—her brand’s taken a lifetime to build.)

Take it, use it:

✅ Take center stage and make your brand personal. Use content that shows how your brand values match up with your personal values and opinions irl.



—and the story she’s telling is, women and girls can do whatever they want. You don’t have to do what others expect you to do.

Take it, use it:

✅ Whether on a deeper level or right on the surface, your brand can make a philosophical statement about how things ought to be. (E.g., women should write their own story instead of society writing it for them) People love to get behind a cause they believe in. So give them one.



Taylor has so much integrity to the core values of her brand that it doesn’t matter if we don’t love a new album, we’re going to try to give it a shot and respect it without letting it damage how we feel about the brand.

That’s the power of trust.

Take it, use it:

✅ If you’re nurturing your brand right, your fans can handle a product that flops without giving up their brand loyalty. That’s the magic of the “Taylor’s Versions.” It’s basically Taylor saying, here’s a version of that old song that’s even closer to the true brand that you love. Brilliant.



She’s audience-centric. Taylor makes her fans a part of the brand by creating puzzles and dropping easter eggs meant to engage and entertain just them.

Take it, use it:

✅ Create inside jokes and “had-to-be-there’s” that make your audience feel special when they can participate in something only they would get. (Disclaimer: This is a brand-enhancement move that will work best once you already have a healthy, engaged following.)



We feel like we know who Taylor is, because she’s not shy about sharing her opinions with the world. She knows she can’t please everyone—but she engenders love from her following by being loudly authentic.

Take it, use it:

✅  Don’t avoid being opinionated because you know it won’t vibe with some people. Focus on your tribe and resonate with them. In a phrase, “have courage and be kind” when sharing your opinions online.



Taylor’s a disruptor of the status quo. She makes it her job to test the boundaries of what she can do with her music. (Have you seen her music videos? “Bejeweled” is almost 6 minutes long and includes prelude and epilogue scenes with celebrity cameos.)

Take it, use it:

✅  Dream big. If something’s never been done before, but you think it would be a great value-add to your offering, just do it! Don’t let the status quo put you in a box.


Want to apply any of these winning strategies to your brand? I can help.

Schedule a Power Hour with me and we can brainstorm together how we can T. Swift-ify your brand.

Do I really need brand strategy?

The short answer is YES, if you want your business to grow.

Here’s why:

If you have been doing a bit of research on designers, then you have probably come across the term “brand strategy” or “brand strategist” at least once or twice… or maybe not at all before now. Either way, I’m about to tell you all about it!

First we have to get something out of the way, I won’t go into much detail because I have another blog article already written all about this! You can read it here

A brand is NOT a logo.

Your brand is the atmosphere of your business. And your logo is a symbol that represents that atmosphere.

In simpler terms, a brand is what a business looks like, sounds like, smells like, feels like, tastes like…. think Tiffany & Co vs Claires. Both are jewelry brands, but they have very different vibes compared to each other. They are different for several reasons. They serve different types of customers, they have different standards for quality, they have different business values, etc All these factors play a part that makes up their brand atmosphere. It goes beyond the look of their logo.

That’s where brand strategy comes into play!

As a designer who offers brand strategy, I have a process that walks us through analyzing who your ideal customer is, what they need, what they don’t need, how their mind works, what they like to see when they shop, and what keeps them coming back for more.

But that’s not all, we also analyze how you sit next to your competition. What will help your customers choose YOU over them? Brand strategy helps us to find those answers.

This in-depth process allows us to see the bigger picture of your brand. We can identify holes that need to be filled in your marketing strategy and we’ll have a solid understanding of how to effectively communicate to your customers.

“Design is thinking made visual”

– Saul Bass

Good design solves problems. Good design is communicative. My job as a brand designer is to create visuals that effectively communicate your brand atmosphere to your customer from the very beginning. I will base all of my design choices on the strategy that we have created together. 

For example, if we determine that your customers need to feel safe and secure when they interact with your business, then the colors, fonts, and design styles I recommend will support that feeling. I most likely will not recommend bold colors and fonts, even though they are eye-catching. A bold style would not be one that is attractive to customers seeking a safe space.

However, there are SO many factors to consider in your brand visuals, and so many different ways to put it all together. Every business is unique and it should be branded that way.

So, do you really need brand strategy? 


It is a common false-belief that businesses can get by just grabbing a logo from somewhere and moving on. I’ve even seen some businesses that don’t have a logo at all. However, if you have started a business with the intent to grow and make substantial profits, you will inevitably need to go back and create a brand strategy, which will probably alter how you present yourself physically, visually, and verbally.

So why not do it now? Let’s work together to get it done right the first time. 

I promise, it’s worth it.

Reach out today to inquire about your brand strategy project.
xo, Karely

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