The Top 3 Mistakes Creatives Make When Choosing Fonts

Taking the leap into entrepreneurship is daunting. You need to figure out so many things and one of the first things you do is figure out your color palette. Because colors and branding go hand-in-hand. But my DIY’er have you given any thought to your font palette? Fonts are the underdog in your branding story but are so important. They set the tone, invoke moods and allows your personality to shine.

While font pairing may seem like a serious-freakin'-headache. It doesn’t have to be. While there are literally thousands of fonts to choose from, you can go into your search as confident as a design pro with these font pairing tips.

NOT CONSIDERING THE FEELING OF THEIR BRAND

What do you and your brand represent? What is your brand’s personality? And yes, your brand has a personality. Why, you ask? Because your personality is what people feel and associate when they think of your brand. What do you want them to feel? You control the public perception you know. Let’s talk a little about a brand personality before we get into fonts. 

A brand personality is simply a set of emotional and associations connected to a company or brand (you!) These emotions and associations determine how a person feel about a brand. The people you want to relate and get the most feels are your target audience. Do your people relate and react to fun or formal, rugged or chic personality? 

Your brand can be: 

  • Fun or Serious
  • Reserved or Bold and Outspoken
  • Trendy or Classic
  • High-end or Budget
  • Masculine or Feminine
  • Young or Seasoned
  • Sexy or Charming

ACTION: Select several personality traits that reflect who you are, who you want to be and how you want your brand to be perceived. Once you are clear on this you can chose fonts that match those feelings and your brand personality.

Want to get started now? Girl, let me do the work for you. 

NOT KNOWING THEIR FONTS

Knowing the types of fonts and the feelings they invoke will make selecting fonts for your site a breeze. There are three primary font categories:

Serif Fonts

Serif fonts are the fonts with the little decorative stroke that extends from letters. The stroke varies from being extra tail, short, sharp, or soft. 

Serif fonts are generally associated with: 

Sans Serif Fonts

San Serif fonts are the fonts without the little decorative strokes. Sans means “without.”

San Serif fonts are associated with:

Script Fonts

Script fonts are fonts that mimic calligraphy, cursive and handwriting. 

Script fonts are usually characterized as being: 

script fonts.png

Calligraphy fonts are more formal and elegant, while handwriting fonts are more casual and fun. 

ACTION: Select the font family that best represents your brand.  

NOT COMBINING THE RIGHT FONTS

Combining fonts for your brand does not have to be hard. Here are three tips to make it a breeze.

ONLY PICK TWO TO START

Once you select the font family (serif, sans serif or script) that best represents your brand, chose another one. The font that speaks to you the most will be your heading font (H1). This is the biggest, boldest and attention grabbing font. It screams “Read Me” and should definitely be the most on brand font. These fonts are usually included in your logo.

The second font is for everything else, but especially your body font. Your body font must be legible, so serif and san serifs are best.

Pro Tip: Do NOT use script for your body text. Just don’t. Also, if your H1 text is longer than 3 words, do not use script. Use script as an accent. (So write just one key word in script if your page, blog or marketing heading is more than 3 words.)

ACTION: Select another font family that best represents your brand. Easy, right?

OPPOSITES ATTRACT

If your immediately drawn to a serif font, chose the opposite, a san serif, as your body font. And vice versa. Easy, peasy.

STICK WITH WHAT YOU LIKE

If you like one font, stick with it. You may use multiple headers (H1, H2, H3) and may think you need a different font for each. You don’t! Use a different size or weight or line spacing to create a visual difference while staying true to your brand personality. See: 

You got this. Take step back and consider if your font palette is a true representation of your brand and if the fonts you use pair well. Well do they? Let me know it the comments.

Rita Olds-RobinsonFonts