Looks and first impressions are shallow.
Only, if they don’t have a strong foundation and a reason for being there.
We do make an impression on anyone and anything within seconds, so to tell someone to not judge the book by its cover is sort of hypocritical, it’s just how our human minds work.
My philosophy is to make sure you have a cover that reflects you and then let people judge away.
Which just made me think of a little incident a while back…
I was with a group of friends and acquaintances who like to dress very differently from me, glitter in the face, interesting headpieces, wild patterns, etc. not my jam but that doesn’t defer me from hanging out and loving them for expressing themselves.
I was dressed in a way that reflects who I am and how I feel good, which typically means I’m in clothing that is more minimalistic, classic with clean lines and something with a touch of an edge.
Because there were more of “them” than me, I was standing out. One of them came up to me and said, in a slightly condescending way: “You look very Swedish.”
I said: “Thank you!”
He was spot on. I am proudly Swedish. 😉
Knowing who you are and what jives with you is the first step in a brand audit. And even the first step in life. It’s something that can take some time to develop so don’t fret, go with your best guess until it feels right.
Keep being curious and questioning yourself.
It helps to refine what really feels like you and how you want to present yourself, who you like to work with, what type of work you thrive on etc.
So now to make it apply to business…
Often when people think of brands, they think of a logo, but the logo is just one piece of the puzzle. The whole experience working with you/your company is part of your brand.
To make the puzzle, you need to know the foundation. Sort of like collecting your ingredients before you cook your meal.
So let’s collect some good ingredients by answering these questions:
Besides, the occupation you are in, how do you want to be presented? (For example, Swedish, kind, funny, bold etc)
Who can you help the most? Who do you understand? Who do you thrive on from working with? (Ex, new business owners, mid-career doctors, french-americans, stay at home dads…)
Which problem are you uniquely solving for those folks? (Ex, step-by-step guidance on how to gain financial freedom, the ____ framework to build a closet that has you ready to take on casual to dressy)
Now make sure that is communicated on all touchpoints from email signature, social media platforms to website.
That might be easier said than done, so I’d like to invite you all to follow along as this is a 2 part article. I will be giving you all my tips + tricks for a website plus brand audit in the next one!