I’ve been thinking a lot about branding lately. Mainly because I think that solid branding is the emerging and independent designer’s best friend.
If you have a consistent and personality-driven brand for your business, you don’t have to rely so much on lots of money and expert consultants to build a profitable and sustainable business.
The thing is, a lot of designers don’t pay attention to their brand nearly as much as they should. Actually, not just designers, business owners as a whole don’t do it enough.
I know I’ve been guilty of this. There was a learning curve for me as I built the StartUp FASHION Community; I didn’t realize how much our audience was drawn to the personality of our brand (and by extension, my own personality as the face of the company).
But over the years I’ve learned. Because the reaction to the StartUp FASHION identity- our voice and language and opinions and approach- is what we are most proud of. It’s when we really allow that personality to come through that we receive the most interaction, connection, chit-chat, and love.
Have you experienced this? When you just sort of loosen up and be yourself and then people are more naturally attracted to you? The same is true for your brand.
Over the Christmas holiday, I had an opportunity to see this come to life.
Do you know the online marketplace Local Eclectic? They carry work from emerging brands around the world (several of our community members sell on their site). Anyway, a family member of mine bought me a gift from the site. And in the package I received a post card that said…
I absolutely loved it. And I absolutely loved Local Eclectic even more than I did before. Now, sitting in my family’s living room surrounded by a variety of personalities, not everyone thought this was as cool as I did. Some chuckled, some scrunched their faces in confusion, some belly laughed along with me.
It doesn’t matter though. Local Eclectic wasn’t trying to reach my aunt Fannie (I don’t actually have an aunt Fannie but wouldn’t that be awesome?!), they were trying to reach the person or people who get their sense of humor. The people who want to hang out with them in a bar. The people who laugh at their jokes and tell funny ones themselves. The people who, based on a love note like that one above, will forever think of their brand as a brand they can identify with; a brand they love to support.
So as you enter into the new year and think about ways to build your business and expand your reach, remember that not everyone is your market, not everyone will “get” your brand, and that’s okay. Just allow your brand to be itself and, just like people at a dinner party, those with similar personalities will be naturally attracted.
All my love and encouragement,