How to get clear on your brand values



it’s the best thing you’ll ever do!

Getting clear on your brand values is one of the smartest moves you’ll make.

Why? Because when you understand your brand values, you can create a brand that truly resonates with the people that matter most to you (including yourself). And you can pivot & respond to market shifts without constantly changing your brand identity.

This means your audiences know & trust what you stand for, no matter how you might shift your products & services. In other words, you get a bit of business freedom.

what are personal values?

If you’re ex-corporate like me, you’d be forgiven for a minor eye-roll at the mere mention of brand values; distant memories of cold Powerpoint presentations listing Corporate Values You Must Obide By.

What the big companies get wrong, is that you can’t ‘push’ personal values onto somebody. That’s why when you’re a small businesss & you employ someone, it feels super scary & important, because you want someone who organically shares your values.

Personal values are your moral compass, they tell you what’s right, wrong & help you make decisions about who to buy from, where to go, how to behave & even who you like.

what about your personal brand?

So we all have personal values that make us who we are but we also have a personal brand that SHOWS us as who we are to others.

Your personal brand is how you package yourself up: it’s the bits you share & it’s how you position yourself. To get clear on your personal brand values, ask yourself:

  • What do I value most from the people I love to buy from & learn from?

  • What’s totally unshakable in the way I treat people?

  • How do I want people to feel when they come into contact with me?

  • How much of me personally is carried into in my personal brand?

  • How do you want to be known & remembered?

For example, if you highly value honesty – is this a core value that’s reflected in everything you do? Are you always to the point, do you always tell the truth – even if it’s tough love?

business brand values

Unless your personal brand IS your business, I would recommend making a distinction between your business & personal brand values.

Is there crossover with personal brand values? Yes! Absolutely.

But your business values are there even when you’re not. Your business brand has the potential to grow bigger than you, reach the farthest corner of the world & endure for multiple generations to come.

Ask yourself:

  • What’s non-negotiable in how you talk to your clients & treat your partners?

  • If you were to employ someone, what would make you most nervous that they might not do or might not understand about your business? (the opposite of this is most likely a value)

  • How do you want others to describe the way you do business & what you sell?

For example, you might be ethical, adventurous, family-focussed. Innovation, leadership & status could be very important to you. Or having high quality & long lasting products might be a value that’s totally non-negotiable. You might feel that personal traits are most important in your brand, such as warmth & approachability.

Don’t be a slave to only using certain types of words, just get it all down then make yourself a shortlist of 3 things you you value the most.

be known for what you stand for

Ask what your clients value most from you too. Are they the same things as what you most value?

It can be tough to see yourself & your business clearly, but it’s well worth investing the time to truly consider these things.

A powerful brand isn’t the one that’s pretty or trendy – it’s the one that’s confident, incisive & conveys precisely what it stands for & how this helps its audience.

creative that speaks the truth

Whether personal brand or business brand, your values are integral to your creative. Otherwise, how will anyone be able to connect & resonate with your values? 

Colour psychology uses the seasons (winter, spring, summer, autumn) to root your brand into a leading visual style, which:

  • Communicates persuasively & consistently

  • Connects with your ideal client on an emotional level

  • Creates harmony, cohesion & clarity

  • Gives you a go-to reference that makes design faster & easier

This is a truly exceptional technique & there’s nothing I love more than seeing more small business harness its power.