Have you ever heard some things about branding and thought, “wait a minute, that can’t be right.” Or heard one person say one thing and one person say another, leaving you in the middle, just confused. Or maybe you’ve had some things in your mind about branding that have stopped you from taking action or making changes. Well that ends today.
There are a BUNCH of myths about branding, like I literally could have a list of 20+, but today I’m going to bust the 5 big ones that are totally holding you back.
The truth is that branding is figuring it out. If you wait until you feel like you have it all together before you start working with a strategist, working on your brand yourself, or hiring a designer, you’re never gonna start.
The best thing for you to do is to start working on your brand right now and figure it out as you go. Start working on your brand strategy, trying to write your mission statement, or creating your ideal customer avatar. Reach out to that brand designer. Do the thing. Take the action.
As you start asking yourself questions, or working with a strategist who will ask you questions or a coach who will coach you through uncovering the answers to questions, that's when you're gonna figure all this stuff out. By doing it, by taking action, by starting to ask the questions, by going through the process.
For a lot of people, branding is something they look at once a year maybe, or once every few years, and then leave it until next time.
You actually need to be thinking about and working on your brand all the time.
Every time you post on social media, you are building your brand. Anytime you create a new product, you're building your brand. Anytime you update your website, you’re building your brand. Because your brand impacts so many areas of your business, you have to think about it in every decision that you make, in everything that you put online, in everything that you create and put out into the world.
Think about what you're trying to grow, what goals you're trying to achieve, where you're trying to work towards, and how you can do that all the time, not just once a year or once every three years.
Your brand doesn't have to stay the same, and I would argue that it shouldn't.
As a human, you change and evolve and learn and grow and develop and level up and all of the good things that come with being a human and with being an artist. The world changes, social media changes, the internet changes, the industry changes. Things change all the time, and your brand should too.
If your brand stays the same, it's gonna get stale and not evolve with you as a person. As a result, you’ll become detached from your brand because it hasn't kept up with you. And it's also gonna become detached from the people engaging with it. So it has to develop.
People can get so stressed out and stuck thinking that their brand has to stay the same. That if you make a decision now about your logo or vision or tagline, that you are locked into that forever, because if you change it, it's going to be a disaster that you're never gonna be able to overcome. That is so not true.
I changed my business name completely and that only changed my brand and my business for the better. Every time I update my Instagram bio, it gets better every time. Every time I add a new visual element to my brand, it takes things to the next level. All of these little changes help me to feel more connected to and excited by my brand, and to stay relevant and engaged with my audience.
If you’ve felt stuck by the fact that you have to make a decision and keep it like that forever, then I'm here to let you loose from that holding you back. You can change, develop and experiment with things. Evolution is a good thing.
You’re not alone if you feel like for a lot of creatives, success happens overnight, and that you’re expected to do the same.
But the good news is, branding is all about the long game. It can take months and years for brands to develop, brand loyalty to grow, and strategies to show results, but it does. Branding has a compounding effect, so the more that you show up, share your work, reach out to people, put your work out there, your brand will grow as things compound.
So you have to show up again and again and commit to the process, believing that it will work in the long run. Know that what you’re doing now, the seed you’re planting today is gonna grow and blossom into something beautiful in the long run. Because it will. When you do that, you'll let go of a lot of the pressure and the stress of things having to work immediately, and get comfortable with working on things over the long game.
Consistency builds trust with your audience and with yourself. But you get to decide what consistency means and what it looks like to you.
In I Didn't Do The Thing Today by Madeline Dore, she says that "we might feel that we wobble from day to day, but if we take a longer view, we can find that we've been balancing the various parts of our lives all along. We might not read every night before bed, but have stretches of weeks where we devour several books. We might not have a daily regime, but rather a weekly rhythm. Sometimes we are plotting away at something working steadily day by day, and other times we sprint to the finish line. Life happens in peaks and troughs, and we wobble with it. That's what really changed the idea of balance for Madeline Dore, seeing consistency as an accumulation over time, not a perfect adherence."
Consistency can feel like like an all or nothing thing. It leads you to believe that you have to show up every day because if you miss a day or a week that you’ve failed and lost the consistent brand you were building. You might worry about changing your slogans or messaging for fear that you’ll ruin your consistency. But that’s not the truth and it's really adding a lot of unnecessary pressure to your life.
Consistency, like Madeline Dore says in her book, is an accumulation over time. It means that consistently throughout your life and your business, you’re being creative, doing the work that you wanna do, and showing up.
It doesn't necessarily mean you've shown up every single day for the last five years that you've run your business That doesn't matter. What matters is that over that time you've kept coming back, you've kept showing up even if you took a month off, or didn't post anything for three months. If over that accumulative time, you are being consistent in balancing things, you’re being consistent.
When it comes to branding, you’re bound to hear a lot of myths and tell yourself certain stories about what it means for your business. But take everything you hear with a grain of salt, think about how it applies to you as a creative, and trust your gut. There is no one right way to build your brand - the only right way is the way that’s right for you. So with some myths busted, and the power in your hands, go forth and build your brand!
March 22, 2023