I’ll preface this one. This is mainly opinion. It’s subjective. But I think the logic follows. Keep it simple, stupid. Today we are talking about business cards, communication collateral, email signatures, email addresses, website URL’s, the look and feel of your site…you name it. Keep it simple. There are a lot of things that you can do to make yourself memorable to people who you meet, and intend to gain business from either immediately or down the road. Having a super flashy business card, a creative but unimaginabley complex URL, or an email signature that contains 6,500 flower emoji’s aren’t any of them.
The good thing about having websites like VistaPrint is that you have dozens or hundreds of pre-made design templates to use for your business card and communication collateral. The bad thing about having websites like VistaPrint that has dozens or hundreds of pre-made design templates to use for your business card and communication collateral, is that there are tens of thousands, maybe even hundreds of thousands of makeup artists. This means that your business cards and collateral will be identical to that of hundreds or thousands of makeup artists. As an artist, your uniqueness is your calling card.
As we discussed in Freelance Makeup Business 101 v6.0, specifically under Brand Associations, your business card, your communication collateral, etc. are ALL a part of your personal brand. That said, your business card, the collateral, the design (colors, look, feel) of your website should all flow together seamlessly. Additionally, it’s my own personal belief that they should all be rather simplistic. Nobody is going to remember you because of your business card. I’ve collected thousands of business cards in my career, and the only one I can recall is my own. I’ve collected cards that are odd sizes, insane colors, crazy textures, different materials, you name it. And I forgot every single one of them. The goal of a business card in 2014 is to hand it to someone and hope they put it into their iPhone immediately. Because if they don’t…it’s going in the trash anyway.
So use your business card, and the rest of your collateral as a way of furthering your brand image. Your brand identity. People will forget the small things, but if you combine all of the small things to make one strong overall brand identity…people will remember it. As Tecumseh said, “A single twig breaks, but a bundle of twigs is strong.”
As I mentioned before…as an artist, your uniqueness is your calling card. And as a businessperson, you should be calling attention to your art. The focal point of your brand identity should be the amazing makeup artistry that you create. The rest of your collateral should support it. Your logo, colors, etc. If I am representing a product…the product is what I want you to see. Super flashy websites that call attention to things other than what they intend to sell will ultimately convert less. There is a reason I have 20 awesome products right on the front page of this website — because it is what you are looking for, when you come here. And my job, is to give you what you want. Right? I know you wantBen Nye Luxury Banana Powder, I know you want a Viseart eyeshadow palette, and I know you want a Stilazzi professional makeup case. So there they are…right in front of your eyes.
If I am hiring a makeup artist, I want to see your work. That’s all I care about. Granted, I want your brand image to be clean and visually appealing because to me, it makes you look more professional. But mainly, I want to see the work that you have done. It’s the reason I am looking at your website. Your cleanest work should be showcased on your home page, and your work types (bridal, fashion, etc.) should be clearly broken out so that I can easily get to the type of work for which I am thinking of hiring you.
And a brief side note about breaking your work into clearly defined categories. If you are a well rounded artist who can make a beautiful bride, and an all-too-realistic looking gun shot wound to the head…don’t put both pictures right next to one another, k? The last thing a bride-to-be who wants to look beautiful on their special day needs to see, is a dude who took a shotgun to the face.
Simplicity, and a focus on your work will pay off more than all of your ancillary brand associations being flashy will. Bet on it.
Until next time folks.