From the Archives: 4 Ways to Build a Stronger Brand with Kathryn Duckett
I received so much love regarding my site! THANK YOU if you took the time to come over and have a look around and/or offered kind words. Those closest to me know how I've agonized over my website for the past year. Feeling quite accomplished, late Friday afternoon I officially logged off Squarespace, got dressed up, and headed off with Logan to celebrate the site finally going live. I treated myself to some champagne and one of the best meals I've had in quite some time; Spanish Iberico pork tenderloin, thanks to Chef Kenny Sloane at Fin. (A favorite haunt of Logan & I. If you're in the Hampton Roads area and are looking for a fantastic meal or to try somewhere new for date night, you won't be disappointed!)
This refresh was way overdue. One of the biggest hurdles I've had to go through was accepting that "done is better than perfect". I realized that I would constantly be waiting for the next awesome session to update my portfolio with, there would always be fonts to obsess over, news ways I could improve SEO, among countless other things to get hung up on. I could've said "It will be up at the beginning of next month!" until I was dead. (True Story: I am a Perfectionist).
As I was looking through my previous blog posts, I found one I created in 2014 with the help of Kathryn Duckett, owner of Crème Brands, who developed my logo and brand materials when I first launched. As I wrote in this blog post, one of the best decisions I made as a new business owner was investing in those things, as I feel they helped me to understand what I wanted my brand to look and feel like. They helped to guide me when I did this relaunch and allowed me to stay consistent.
I found this blog post to quite helpful then, and, as with any great content, it has stood the test of time and is pertinent today as well. If you are a creative entrepreneur, new to the wedding industry, or are looking to launch your own small business, these four tips from Kathryn will certainly help you to build a stronger brand.
4 Ways to Build a Stronger Brand
1. Be Classic
Trends are great for things that you swap in and out of your closet. But, a logo isn't something that should come and go too quickly in your business' life. The best logos become more valuable with age—the longer they are in place, the more recognizable they become!
Ask yourself: Will my brand visuals still look good in 5-10 years?
2. Be Holistic
Sometimes, I think as small biz owners, we're tempted to hang our hats on any ONE aspect of what makes our brand. We let ourselves be overly defined by either our brand's voice, image, or reputation—when the reality is that a brand is a synergy of ALL three! Sometime it's easy to let a current customer base and reputation define you or hold you back from where you need to head. Or, sometimes it's easy to fall into the trap that JUST getting a shiny new logo or slick site without doing strategizing on your positioning will get you where you want to be. No one category is going to totally MAKE your brand.
Ask yourself: Am I putting too much emphasis on just one aspect of my brand? Am I looking to my logo or site to do all the heavy lifting instead of also focusing on creating content and art that communicates my core?
3. Be Different
Remember that childhood game—one thing is not like the other? Well, what’s different is what stands out. It is what we remember. Being unique feels risky, I KNOW. But, it's a bigger risk to fit in. Your greatest feature is everything that makes you different.
Ask yourself: Does my business look a little different, and unique? Or, could it be mistaken for someone else's?
4. Be an Experience
A BRAND is an experience & a LOGO is a symbol of that experience. Maya Angelou's words ring true: “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Focus on creating an atmosphere with your brand that gives your clients an experience they will remember.
Ask yourself: What experience do my clients get and how is it unique? Is my logo in line with these core differentiators?
Countless thanks to Kathryn for this wonderful advice, and for taking the time to compile it!