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The Expert Guide on How to Create a Brand Mood Board

Updated: Mar 11, 2020

A brand mood board is essentially helpful for new business owners who want to nail down their branding or starting a new project that's heavily visual.

A mood board can be the difference between keeping focused and cohesive theme and wandering around aimlessly. For new projects and brainstorming mood boards can be a big help, providing a visual example or a guide to the direction you want to take your brand.

Today I'll show you how to make and use a brand mood board to effortlessly tap into your brand's power and marketing.

How to create a brand mood board

What Is a Mood Board

A mood board is an arrangement of text, colors, images, objects and media of your choice to visually portray, evoke or communicate a mood, voice, concept or branding that you would like to emulate through or with other projects.

You don't need to be a creative to create a mood board. All you need is a clear-cut goal and the will to bring it all together.

How to use a Mood Board

A brand mood board allows you to unfold and capture your brand's aesthetic, identity, the emotions you want your brand to convey, consistent look and feel of your brand across online and offline mediums (social media, website and business cards).

Brand mood boards also has a place in the corporate world, and can even be presented to stakeholders at meetings.

You can use a brand mood board for the following:

  • Creating a Website for your business

  • Pitching a Product

  • Product packaging

  • Creating Brand Identity

  • Creating Graphics and visual media for a client

  • Creating an Event or occasion

  • Instagram Aesthetics Layout/Guideline

  • A Guide for your stores interior decor

  • Marketing campaign video or photo shoot

How to Make a Brand Mood Board

How to create a brand mood board

Now that you know what a mood board is, what it can do, It's time to know "how to" make a mood board.

It's always best (and recommended) to start with a concept, theme or lifestyle that you would bring to life with your project. This is where the research begins on your part. Spend time investigating and researching. It’s definitely worth it. Get inspired by other people’s ideas or mood boards as well.

Before you start searching for pictures on Pinterest, you'll need to ask yourself these three questions, and keep asking yourself these questions as work on your brand mood board.

  1. What's your goal or vision. Ask yourself "I want to accomplish with this mood board?"

  2. What values, emotion and voice do you want to capture?

  3. What doesn't belong on your mood board?

Once you have the answer to all three of these question you're off to a good start. Next you'll need to consider what kind of elements will help you to capture these answers perfectly:

  • Words

  • Colors

  • Textures and patterns

  • Mood

  • Composition

  • Subject matter

  • Brand-related keywords

  • Descriptive language

  • Photographs

  • Sketches and Illustrations

Don't worry we'll get to the fun part of your brand mood board soon. It can feel a bit seem tedious but once you start researching images and pieces it'll all make sense.

Choose Your Medium: Digital or Physical

You can either go old school and create a physical brand mood board, forging for patterns and clippings, or you can take a more modern approach and use online platforms to create a digital brand mood board.

There's no wrong or right way to about it, it all boils down to to what you think best presents your idea and brand.

If your creating a physical brand mood board, start looking for large stock board or foam, magazines and fabric that inspires you.

Personally I create digital mood boards, it's easier to source, manage and share. As a mood board addict myself, here are top five online platforms you should consider for your own digital brand mood board:

How to create a brand mood board

How to create a brand mood board

How to create a brand mood board

How to create a brand mood board

How to create a brand mood board

Putting It All Together

Find words that are centered around the aesthetic and mood you want your images and items to reflect. Use words but not generic ones such as "long-lasting","fantastic" "awesome" or "quality", try to use words that reflect the audience you are trying to reach, emotion or moment that you want to capture.

The words you use don't have to be on your mood board, that is optional. There's no limit to the number of text styles or words you want to use as long as it suits your style and message.

Remember, you’re trying to capture a “mood.” When it comes to communicating that elusive feeling, in this case, anything goes.

The images you use to can make or break your mood board. Take the time to collect as many images as you can before you start creating your board. When you collect your images, try to make sure that they're in one folder. This gives you the chance to see how cohesive the photos are together.

How to create a brand mood board

Your images can be detailed or vague, there's no hard and fast rule on what images to use as long as they have the aesthetic that you require.

If you're looking for images for your personal mood board, you can try google, Pinterest and other sites that inspire you, however, for a commercial use you'll need stock free images for your mood board, you can use sites like:

The Run Down

After collecting information and piecing images together, the most important is to have fun with your mood board.

It doesn't matter if it's for a client or your own personal project,  enjoy the process, the more in tune you are with it, the easier you can know if you're going in the right direction or not.

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1 Comment

Kate Myhovych
Kate Myhovych
Oct 26, 2022

Great post! This article also lists the mandatory elements for a moodboard, as well as the elements that should not be used.

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