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Brand development can be overwhelming. And when I say that, many of you might be thinking, “Yes, yes it can be. All the colors, the fonts, the logo. It’s so hard to decide!” Well, imagine how your brain will explode when I tell you that your brand is not just the look of your business. It’s a whole bunch of things OTHER than the physical look of your business. It’s the services you provide, product labels, the way product is packaged for shipping, customer service, the language you use with customers, their interactions with you….and…and….and. So.much.
What if I also told you the building blocks of your brand are very basic. It doesn’t have to be scary! One-third of your brand development is the easiest thing in the world. It’s completely done for you already! 1/3 of your brand is in place…..because, you were born. Yep. Part 1 of your brand development is YOU!
Part 1 of Brand Development: YOU are your brand!
Everyone has their own personality. They have their own way of talking. The way their brain processes the world is completely unique from the other 19 people around them. Your voice is all yours. As the Dr. Seuss quote says, “Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”
And like it or not, you cannot escape being you and your business cannot run away from you being a part of it. LOL! Soooo, by transitive property of brand development: YOU are your brand. (I just made that up y’all…and aren’t you proud of me for remembering the term ‘transitive property’ from high school mathing?? LOL)!
Part 2 of Brand Development: The visual look of your business
Here’s the thing…A LOT of people get hung up on Part 2 of brand development. Part 2 is the visual piece of your brand. The physical look of colors, fonts, graphics, logos, etc. This is where you have to make some choices, decisions, commit to something, anything! LOL! I say that with love. Friends, I’ve had some clients that have a really hard time making a decision when it comes to the look of their brand. And I’m here to tell you, unlike Part 1 (I’m sorry, you are you, and you cannot be changed. Haha!), the visual look of your brand can change! Oh yes, it can!
You can change your entire color scheme from rainbow-colored to black and white. You can rename your business a completely new name. Your fonts. Dude, they are not set in stone. Now, if you were getting your logo tattooed on your body, ok, that’s permanent. You might want to rethink that idea. But, overall, just starting with something is what you need to do.
Part 3 of Brand Development: Your story, your message.
I might argue that Part 3 is the MOST important part of your brand and the area that most micro-business owners spend the least amount of time “fussing” over. When in reality, you should be spending almost all of your time on the story you are telling across your social media platforms, and the message you are sending out to your ideal client.
I used the word fussing because in my experience, many solopreneurs nitpick the details of the visual look of their brand because they think they need it to be just-so. They think their logo needs to be a perfect representation of their business. But, then they write copy that does not speak to their ideal client. Or, they don’t even know who their ideal client is. They aren’t telling people the problem their business solves. THIS is the most important piece of the branding puzzle. But again, your messaging can evolve and change as your business grows, as you get clarity in your message, and experience under your belt.
To Recap and break down brand development for you:
There are three parts to creating a solid, cohesive business brand:
- YOU— Overall, you are unchanging. Your mindset can change, you can grow in your thinking. But, if you’re a bubbly out-going person, you’re going to be a bubbly out-going person. If you’re shy and reserved, you’re not going to change that. Your brand is authentically you.
- The VISUAL LOOK to your brand– This can change. This can evolve. You aren’t married to one look. This should be the EASIEST part of building your brand.
- The MESSAGE you send out into the Universe — This is in a state of perpetual evolution. You continue to clarify your overall message. You keep learning more about your ideal client, their problems, and how you provide solutions for them. You want to continue to evaluate and manipulate your words to get right down to what your ideal client wants and needs. And everyday is an improvement over the previous day.
An Illustration of Brand Development
If I were to draw a pie chart illustrating how these three things breakdown, they would not be equal parts. Though, above I was speaking in thirds, think of it more as part 1 of 3, 2 of 3 and 3 of 3. Because the pie chart actually looks like this:
The size of each “pie piece” represents how important each part is to your overall brand.
Let me tell you a little story to illustrate this point even further. I recently discovered another business with a very similar name to mine. So, like any curious person, I Facebook stalked their business page a bit. LOL! The colors in their logo are somewhat in the same range as mine. And it appears they may be heading toward designing graphics too. It seems this business is relatively new as their content doesn’t go back more than a couple weeks.
There are a few ways I could react to this discovery. I could get annoyed. I could get angry. I could reach out to them. OR, I can remember what I said above. Even though on the surface this business seems VERY similar to mine, what they don’t have…is me! They also don’t have my messaging, or my story, or my voice.
The moral of this story is about abundance. There is room for everyone out there. There is room for multiple people doing the same thing. Each of us brings ourselves, our voice, and story to the table. And no one can clone you, at least, not yet. LOL!