Like most things in life, it’s a lot easier to help others than to take your own advice. As a brand strategist, I love helping businesses discover who they are and how they can better connect with their audience through strategic branding—taking those steps for my own business however, hasn’t been as easy.
But, it has been worth it.
For nine years’ my business has been focussed on content. I have allowed it to be defined by the output of writing, but in truth the service my clients appreciate most is the creativity, the ideation and the strategic thinking that sits behind each and every word. At least, that’s what they tell me (yes, I have amazing clients and I’m very thankful for their kind feedback).
Making this the focus of my brand has been an exciting challenge, and also one that has required me to be braver and bolder than I’ve ever been. I won’t lie—it’s been quite confronting at times. But, as a business, and as a business owner, I can no longer stay in my comfort zone if I am to grow.
So, why is branding so confronting?
It’s a process that requires reflection.
The best brands are authentic. They live by their brand promise and they deliver. To do this as a business, you have to be honest with yourself, and honesty is tough. We all have weaknesses and limits to what we can achieve—the process of branding reveals these.
You question a lot.
Any business owner will tell you that self-doubt is the ultimate saboteur. Most days, you can keep the doubts at bay by looking at the results of your work, but when it comes to making a statement about who you are and why that’s important, you have to ask yourself a lot of questions. I’m pretty good at asking other people questions. In fact, it’s a key part of my job as both a writer and a film critic—, but asking them of yourself is hard.
Branding is transformative.
Once you’ve worked through the process, and the evidence is so compelling as to allay any doubt, it changes you. It changes how you do business, it can change the people you choose to be part of yours and the goals you set yourself.
Despite it being challenging at times, I’m really glad I have gone through the brand development process myself. Not only has it given me a much greater appreciation for what I ask of my clients, but it’s also given me a clear vision for my business that aligns with my values.
If you’d like to learn more about the process of brand development, feel free to say hello @quipbrands or firstname.lastname@example.org