Super Important Things to Know When Deciding A Logo

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You may have noticed a logo can come in varying shapes and sizes. A logo is a small piece of the overall picture of your brand and visual style. And like everything else with your business growth, it will change over time.

What you decide for your logo now doesn't mean that it's set in stone forever. It's perfectly ok to have an interum logo in the meantime, but you don't want it looks super cheap. It needs to be memorable, effective and helps portray your branding style.

If you happen to be thinking about a logo, if you're DIYing or getting someone to do it for you, you might like to read on.

 

Let’s start with a fundamental question, do you still need a logo if you’re building a brand online?

 

Brief answer...yes. If you’re building a personal brand you need to integrate both -an image of you as well as a logo - because they are both equally important.

 

The magic formula for

personal branding online is

You + Your logo = Memorable.

 

Some people may remember your face or your name and others may remember your logo - but if you use both, they will remember you more quickly and easily.

Remember people are very visual and retain information when they see an image so it's equally important to have an image of you and your logo.

If you haven't noticed before now, some of the best logos over the years are super simple, unique, and very memorable. 

For example, when I say Chanel - what are you thinking right now?

Nothing fancy is it? Super simple - yet powerful.

 

For any business, a logo is a visual element that will help your ideal audience remember you.

Here's what you need to know when

deciding on a memorable logo

 

KNOW YOUR VIBE + PERSONALITY

Think of some adjectives that represent the personality you want to portray:

friendly, high tech, serious, fun, family, business, elite, chic, expensive, affordable, exclusive, trendy, big, small, rustic, whimsical, etc.

Use adjectives to describe your desired brand style image and personality. Remember we're creating a personal brand here. Some processes and questions are a little different if you're creating branding for a product [for instance].

 

KNOW YOUR TRIBE + AUDIENCE

This seems pretty obvious but I gotta add this one in. Know your customers, and know who you’re communicating and wanting to deal with.

 

Just because you may like the design and style of a logo, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s gonna be effective.

 

If your audience [and clients] are super corporate then a floral logo may not be so effective. Remember it’s the visual communication that needs to portray your brand and style. It’s the vibe that your audience needs [and wants] to feel when they encounter your brand. And having a whimsical floral logo will certainly give off a different interpretation.

 

But then again - don’t be so formal and run-of-the-mill. If you don’t like what’s going on in your industry and market - then look elsewhere to seek inspiration. There’s no “Branding Police” to say you can’t do this.

And if you don't know me by now, I'm a huge advocate of personal brands standing out and doing things differently.

 

Include an icon/element

If you're super eager to have a logo that is unique and different include an icon or an element. This helps reiterate the style and character your branding portrays.

This example here: is my website's favicon.

 

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Avoid colour at an early stage in your brand journey

If you want to include colour into your logo, my recommendation is to work out your Branding first.

If you go through a branding process you’ll figure out what colour and style would be suit your overall branding theme. 

 

Too often I see many entrepreneurs running out and getting themselves a website and logo without giving it much thought as to what really goes into the branding process.

In this process you will get to answer some fundamental questions as to how to come up with branding for you and still being quite unique.

 

If you happen to ready to take you through the proper process of creating an unforgettable brand then >>> Be Unforgettable will help you with the branding 101 process.

 

Or if you’re at the stage where you just need a logo and simple one then stick to black and white. You can’t go wrong.

 

One last thing

If you’re tempted to flash a few versions of your logo in a Facebook group and ask for feedback on their favourite one? Walk away - don’t do it!

Why?

Because 9 out of 10 of those people who respond with their thoughts and feedback are 1. not a designer, 2. don’t know your audience and 3. it’s highly likely they are not your target market.

The logo’s in The Bloom store are based on these recommendations and if you’re in need of a quick, pain free, easy option for a logo then head over to the store >>> THE BLOOM STORE

 

As always, comment below if you want to keep the convo going or have a burning Q.

 

With love and grace

Kellie xo

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Brandstorming Your Personal Brand: What is it and where do you start?

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I’m a strong believer that whatever you do in business you need to have a few strategies in place. And when you develop a brand you need to know exactly which strategies will work [and which don't] so you can gain clarity on where you’re heading and ensuring success for the future. Seems logical right?

You could also see it like getting in the car and without any direction of where you’re going, you can easily end up getting lost. If you think about it when you get in the car and you drive - do you know exactly where you’re heading? Have you checked that you’ve got what you need to get there? Petrol in the car? Air in the tyres? 

 

Creating a personal brand is kind of like that. Without direction and understanding the foundations of a rock solid brand you will end up lost. If you find that you’re signing up to the latest challenge, or hanging out in Facebook groups too often you can lose the moment of where you want to be.

 

I’m also an advocate of sharing with others not to think and act like an employee or even a Freelancer. I’d rather cheerlead others to being their own boss. And in order to be your own boss, you have to create your own personal brand with a few strategies in place.

 

Let’s face it most of us have been employees at some stage of our lives and had the calling to venture on our own. And most don’t understand the ramifications of not creating a brand for their business and not creating a clear path to where you want to be.

 

If you find that you don’t have a brand chances are you’ll end up lost. A brand is a guiding light that steers you in the right direction. It’s the light that your ideal clients see you and want to work with you. They will get you!

 

How to create your personal brand

The first step to creating a personal brand is understanding you

Years ago I would have balked at this idea. But I think it was because I didn’t understand it and didn’t really understand me. After all, I was fresh out of corporate and going from boardroom to blogging was too fresh and new. After 25 years or so, in sales and marketing where the culture was “all about the customer”, it was pretty bloody hard to re-think and train myself to act like a boss and not a freelancer, let alone try to understand who my ideal clients were.

 So if I can explain a little more in depth as to why we need to understand more about ourselves.

 

FIND YOUR SPARk!

This is the essence of creating a brand you love. What lights you up? What’s your passion? If you haven’t heard me say it before: “if your audience can’t see and feel your spark, your energy, your passion then how are they to believe what you do?”

 

If you understand more about what you love, what makes you buzz and be more in the zone then you’ll find that you will create your best work.

 

Ask yourself these questions,

What can I talk about for 8 hours?

What gets the goosebumps standing up?

What makes your heart sing?

 

Now write it down. In fact, I insist you get yourself a Brand Journal.

Write down your thoughts, feelings and brand-dump ideas into this journal - every. day! Work out the pros and cons of what you want to offer. Never look at what others are doing in your industry, then offer the same.

 

Here’s an example of what I mean:

Without a doubt, there are probably thousands of people around the globe who offer brand and graphic design courses.  And from what I can see many offer a 4, 6 or 10-week course to their community and at a $1200 price range.

I didn’t want to offer what they are doing because I’ve been talking to so many other solo entrepreneurs throughout my 5 year brand journey. And most have said to me, “I haven’t finished that course”.

My values come into play here as I never want anyone to buy from me and say “they never finished” the course. I worked out the pros and cons of offering a membership instead and with that can keep the price point to a realistic minimum without giving it away!

 

If you find that what you offer is pretty much ‘industry standard’, take a look around in other industries to see what or how you can offer instead.

 

Can you offer an additional service to your portrait photography, like a mini make up session on location? What about packaging your offerings similar to a business coach? Can you offer a three-tier pricing strategy like they do?

 

If you are in the industry where people come to you for your time and skills, I highly recommend to never offer packages at an hourly rate. How you spend your time it is up to you. Never offer an open-ended service package where the client guesses how much you can do in an hour.

 

Instead, think like a boss and develop strategies as to how you can package your offerings or create programs into bundles that are far more worth the end product rather than the client seeing the time spent.

 

When I worked with clients I always offered an introduction package. For people who hadn’t worked with me before, this was the quickest and easiest way for us to work on a design project and at an affordable price.

 

The second offering was a little more in-depth in terms of offerings and price. Generally, this second tier were bigger projects and took up some of my time during the week. And so on for the third offerings. This one is more about creating offerings that to your high-end red-carpet client and who can afford what you offer.

 

If a potential client sees the value of what you can bring to their business and how your services can add potential growth for them, then you will most often find they will not be squabbling over “what you did in those last 30 minutes”.

 

There is nothing more demoralising to offer a skill or program that everyone else is doing, and in particular, it’s not your zone of genius. Create packages that focus on your strengths and light up both you and your clients.

 

This is post is the first post in a series where I will take you through how to create a personal brand.

  Don't forget to Pin this!

Don't forget to Pin this!

 
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25 Things They Don’t Tell You About Running A Business

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RECENTLY I'VE BEEN TALKING TO A COUPLE OF FRIENDS WHO ARE LOOKING AT STARTING UP THEIR OWN BUSINESS. SO FOR TODAY I WANT TO DISH OUT SOME ADVICE THAT I HOPE YOU FIND USEFUL. SOME OF IT IS RAW AND HONEST BUT THEN AGAIN IT WOULD'VE BEEN NICE TO HAVE KNOWN THIS BACK IN 2012.

 

Running a business isn’t all fairy tales and unicorns.

The truth is that you have to figure it yourself. Yes some people can sell programs and packages that can get you where you need to be, on a promise that you will learn to do it quicker. But the key to this, you have to build a business on your own path, in your own way. Fail and have flops is a must! These are part of the deal. Because if you’ve been through the tough times then you’ll be much more clear on your vision.

 

1. The Business Plan

Do you need to complete a 200 page business plan? It all depends on the type of business you want. If you’re going to have shareholders and JVs, even a retail business and you’re going to take a loan out from the bank, then yes you’ll more than likely need to complete business plan. Google the phrase, “business plan” and usually there’s a free version from your local government or business/ bank entity handing them out or download for free.

 

2. Expect to work 40+ hours a week

If you’re going to get serious about what you do. Plan for 40 hours plus each week, or more. Expect to eat, breath, and live all things about your business.

 

3. Set deadlines

I found I was often moving deadlines for my own projects. Then it occurred to me, I’d never move a deadline for a client or a deadline in my previous life. So why do it for myself?”

 

4. Get use to selling

Selling is the crux of your business. It’s what brings in the money. Get over it. Try different techniques until you get comfortable with one or two.

 

5. You can’t do everything

Avoid trying to do everything. If you’ve saved some money so you can live off capital - budget for a VA. Look for this kind of support Look for a VA who can has multiple skills. Outsource the administration type things such as, email newsletter, posting social media, blog and social media posting.

 

6. 50% of your time should be promoting your brand and what you do

Get your brand out there. Tell people what you do. If you want to promote your brand the slow way, try this:

  • blog post
  • share that blog post on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram
  • network in FB groups - start a conversation - participate in a conversation
  • network face to face
  • share that blog post again and again - schedule it on social media several times and at different times

If you want to promote a quicker way,

  • try Facebook advertising, Facebook and Instagram stories and include video
  • do a guest post on a large platform or someone else's blog who has a similar audience to you

 

7. You don’t need to spend $10K on a website and branding

Use resources like CreativeMarket or StudioPress. They have pre-made websites and branding templates that will certainly help you get started and fairly quickly.

 

8. Experiment

I love this one. I’ve been experimenting quite a lot over the last 18 months. Learn to try things out - experiment with your offerings and/or programs or even workshops test the market. See what people want. Talk to people.

 

9. Self sabotage

It happens. Identify when this can happens and what you do when it does.  Self sabotage can come in all forms. It's self talk that can turn up and sound a lot like: “I’ll get round to that when I’ve done this…” Or “I can’t guest blog post, until my website is done”… or “I need abc to get xyz”.

 

10. Move quickly/move slowly in your business

I’ve done both. I’ve launched programs quickly and I’ve moved slowly in my business. My advice? If you move too slowly and you end up second guessing everything! Find a healthy medium between the two.

 

11. Balance your schedule between working 'in' and 'on' your business

Entrepreneurs wear so many hats. Learn to divvy your time and schedule effectively between each role. Avoid spending too much time doing one thing and not much of anything else.

 

12. A brand is a journey

Enjoy the ride.

 

13. Let’s talk money

This is probably the only time I’ll talk about money. Your outgoings [in terms of expenditure eg. utilities, website hosting, advertising, etc] should be less than your incomings [your earnings].  It’s when you start putting payments and expenses onto your credit card, that's when you might find you can get into trouble. In your first year or two [or in some cases more] these are the times when clients come in peaks and troughs. Once you have the steady flow of regular income, then you may want to invest in the bigger expenses - in order to grow. Whatever money you do earn - put away at least a third of it and don’t touch it. This is for the tax department and your savings.

 

14. Surround yourself with people who support you

And ignore those who don’t. Invest in a mastermind or a tribe that will empower you to think and do creatively as well as strategically building your business.

 

15. Shit happens

Expect it but don’t live in fear of it.

 

16. Consistency

If you’re a creative like me you’re going to find repetitive tasks tedious, mundane + a little boring. Most creatives do. It’s not something we’re wired to do. Learn to be consistently creating content, blog posts, social media, email newsletters over and over again. Another way of thinking about it is to create high impact habits.

 

17. Start the right business

If you’re new to the entrepreneurial world - think about your passion. Don’t think which business will bring in the millions. If you’re going to live and breath, 24/7 everything about your business you might as well build something that you’re passionate about. One of my favourite quotes is:

Be passionate about what you do. If people can’t pick up on what you’re passionate about, how do you expect them to believe in you?

 

18. Build a brand not a business

Businesses can’t and won’t survive if they’re driven by their bottom line. Build a brand that touches on peoples lives.

Building a brand is about creating a community. A community is people believing in what you do and offer - how you inspire them and how you make that emotional connection. A loved up brand is always going to be successful [in so many ways].

 

19. Look after you

It’s a bit of a confusing world - where people dish out advice such as “live like there’s no tomorrow” or “tomorrow is another day”. My advice is like with anything in life - moderation. Have a healthy life and healthy business. Find a balance between the two.

 

20. You’re not going to be liked by everyone

Get over it. If you’re building something from the heart and you believe it helps many people then you’re coming from a good place. Some people may not get you - so what. Be genuine and be authentic - be you. It can be daunting to be transparent but like I said if you’re coming from a good place then eventually you’ll attract the right community.

 

21. JFDI. Just fucking do it 

Avoid spending too much in your head trying to justify why you shouldn’t be doing. I spent a lot of 2016 second guessing everything to the point I was almost paralysed. For me it wasn’t easy growing up where people consistently judged everything you do. The ingrained monkey chatter [as Deepak Chopra likes to call it] - needed to stop. Just fuckin’ do it and don’t second guess it.

 

22. Learn to trust yourself and your intuition

That gut feeling that says “go for it” - then go for it. Avoid living a life that has regrets. If it doesn’t work out then…refer back to No. 15. above. It’s how you deal with it and bounce back is what will make you a better person.

 

23. Define success on your own terms

Be realistic about it too. If you’re in your first year of business and you haven’t brought in a $1Million - you can’t expect it. If someone has said they did in their first year - chances are that business wasn’t their first. You may find they've already tried, tested and failed a dozen times before. Define what success looks to you - celebrate if one person has signed up to your email list.

 

24. The competition

Often people advise to check out the competition in your market place. My advice is know who they are but leave it there. Find the confidence to be the leader in your industry. Seek inspiration from other industries if you want to. It can be unhealthy if you’re obsessed and constantly checking out what the competition is doing. Create programs and service packages that are built on your strengths not on someone else’s “success”.

 

25. Think like an entrepreneur

You’re in business and people come to you, because you offer something they want or need. Avoid thinking like a freelancer or you’re for hire. Big mistake is be in this position, as there are some clients who take advantage of this. They often expect way too much from you and your time. Stand your ground. You’re an entrepreneur - and not their employee.

 

Tell me in the comments below what resonated with you the most, or you’d like to add to the list? I’m always up for a conversation!

 

With gratitude and grace,

Kellie xo

 

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FED UP WITH MAKING NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS?

“If it’s important you’ll find a way. If it’s not, you’ll find an excuse”.

I came across this quote last year, and I can’t believe how motivated I have been since.

Every time I find myself making an excuse for “not doing it” or “I’ll get around to doing it” I would stop and ask myself ‘how important is it for me to do it?’

Another question I would ask, if I think it’s important… “will this have a high impact or low impact for me and my business?”

Of course if it was high impact then I would find it on my “I’d like to do” list.

If I found that it was a low impact but I kinda liked it, then I’d still write it down in my brand journal under the ‘meh-list’ and park it for another day.

If it’s important you will find a way to do it. Otherwise, if it has no significance then stay clear of it. Simple.

 

Ask yourself some of these important questions:

What sort of “return on investment/energy” will it provide?

Do I really need to be doing this task, or can I give it to someone else to do?

 

I don’t set any new year resolutions any more, because I know they are set up to peter out or forgotten and not achieved after awhile.

So now what I do instead is make a promise to myself one task at a time.

And I only make one ‘themed’ promise by month.

This way it’s achievable.

Have you heard the term SMART goals? If not, here’s what it means:

Smart goals are 

  • Specific and to the point
  • Achievable not far fetched and you're able to achieve them
  • they are Measurable in other words you can test to see what has worked and what hasn’t, 
  • they are Realistic again these are not far fetched and hard to achieve
  • Lastly are they Timely - meaning to put an end date to your goal. Write down a time or a date as to when you want to finish it - in a week, a month or 90 days?

And each SMART goal must have a great “Return on energy investment”

When the end of the month rolls around, and I know I’ve achieved it, I make another ‘themed’ promise and so on, throughout the year.

 

Towards the end of last year I found I could easily make 90 day ‘commitments’ and follow through on them.

If you’re finding you want to make a few big commitment for 2018 for your business, sign up to the Bloom Tribe. January’s mini power topic is on

BEING WILDLY PRODUCTIVE + FOCUSSED

We’ll be diving into planning, goal setting and filling your calendar [with only with the important things], so you can live a life of being proactive and not reactive.

I'd love to see you in there.

Kellie xo

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KEY MISTAKES TO AVOID WHEN NAMING YOUR PRODUCTS OR PROGRAMS

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I WANTED TO SHARE A FEW MISTAKES I’VE MADE RECENTLY [AND YES THEY’RE AS RECENT AS 6 WEEKS AGO] WHEN IT CAME TO NAMING MY LATEST PRODUCTS. AND I WANTED SHARE THEM SO THAT YOU CAN AVOID MAKING THEM TOO. HERE ARE SOME THOUGHTS AND QUESTIONS YOU NEED TO CONSIDER WHEN NAMING YOUR PROGRAMS OR PRODUCTS.

As you may be aware I recently created and launched my free membership Radical Brand Love.

After a series of brainstorming sessions, I knew as soon as the name came to light, it made sense for what I was offering in the library.

Though I love the name, I thought it would inspire others to sign up and take action, and surprisingly many did. But not everyone understands the word “Brand”. And being at that stage in the business journey the word “brand” can be loosely translated into “branding”.

The offerings in the library are for people wanting to learn the key fundamentals on creating a brand on solid foundations. So I needed to be very clear on who my target audience is for this library, and for someone who is fairly new to the game it would be far more appealing that to someone who’s been doing it for a while.

The name Radical Brand Love stands firm on it’s own and that’s probably why I loved it so much. But I found it difficult to introduce other programs & workshops and have them relevant to one another, as well as the overall picture.

In the end I needed to create a name that’s easily remembered, and identifiable for my audience. And offering three separate programs at launch time could have meant I had to re-invent promotion strategies for each.

However, all is not lost with my RBL instead it will be used in future challenges.

How do you name your products or programs

and stay on brand? 

The following are a few important questions to ask to ensure you stay on brand and yet still relevant to what you offer and for your audience.

 

INSPIRED ACTION:

Consider the desired outcome for your audience? Where do you see them once they’ve been through your programs, or after they’ve worked with you? How do you want them to feel, be, do? Inspired? Rejuvenated? Radiant?

Avoid acknowledging them where they are now. Think of descriptive name and/or some adjectives that take them where they want to be.

 

STAY ON BRAND:

Remember the words or phrases you choose need to be on brand. What current adjectives have you already got and use for your brand?

Select words that stand the test of time not words that are on trend.

HERE'S AN EXAMPLE OF WHAT I MEAN:

Take for instance the word “bloom” I decided to move away from RBL to something a little softer and more feminine and inspires other women in business to bloom and thrive for their brand.

The word bloom can mean several things. For me it’s relevant because I’m also inspired by nature, and yet can mean for my community to flourish and bloom as in growth; radiate for success, as would a flower.

 

There’s no harm in experimenting with your ideas. If you have the time and the energy to test things out, then I say for it.  But put a time limit on it and then review.

 

In the end I decided the creative library needed to be relevant for both newbies + aspiring entrepreneurs who want to learn to build a brand on solid foundations.

I also needed the name to be relevant to other programs I’m offering. Remember this too. The names you choose now, can they be expanded on if they’re created in the future with other programs and packages, without trying to explain too much with your audience?

You gotta have a relevant theme that’s on brand and on topic, otherwise, it’s just a bundle of confusion.

Avoid generic names like Gold, Silver and Bronze, though you can see each phase for your audience/ clients I think we can get a little more creative than this.

Besides generic names don’t really mean or do anything for your clients.

Get your brandstorming hat on and come up with more creative ideas, but be very clear on the name and without being fancy.

By the way, if you’ve been around in my community for a while, the same scenario occurred for Design School. This name was off and easily misinterpreted for entrepreneurs. Instead, I think people saw it as a school for people who wanted to become a fully fledged designer. And sadly I’ve had to let this one go.

In the end I can now share [and settled on] three most inspired actions and relatable programs and they’re here to stay!

The Bloom Collective

Comprises a collection of free and paid workshops and membership. If you're new to all of this, I recommend starting with the free 5 day course Brand to Bloom.

 

Brand to Bloom

This course will take you through the basics of building a person brand and how you can implement what you've learnt into your website. This is ideal for the aspiring and not so newbie entrepreneur who want to build an unstoppable personal brand. This is where you learn to develop a brand around your superpower or uniqueness and focus on your target audience. Appealing to everyone is not recommended here, and I share why.

 

The Bloom Tribe

The monthly membership is for the doers, creators, and creative solopreneurs who want to learn and stay focussed on the important topics for growing an unstoppable brand. If you’re in your second year or more of business and have a growth plan is on your list – this is ideal for you.

 

DIY Design for solopreneurs + design wannabes

This learning environment is for the creative who wants or loves to design their own graphics and website content from start to finish. And who doesn't mind a little challenge and happy to learn in the top design Adobe programs Photoshop and Indesign.

 

Kellie xo

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Where to get inspiration when you feel like blog posting is a chore

Ever feel like sitting down and writing a blog post is such a chore? I want to share how magazines can have a much more of an impact for you, in more ways than you think.

 

1. USE THEIR HEADLINES

The titles that we see on the front covers are what works. They’ve been tried and tested and approved by Editor of the magazine and they obviously work. Instead of stealing the actual headline use the keywords they have used. Here’s what I mean – take this heading on the Marie Claire cover.

5 rows you’ll have after having a baby (& how to get through them)

Instead try this: 5 xxx [insert your subject/industry pains] you’ll have when having/doing/being xyz [insert another pain point here] (& how to get over it/over come/ deal with it, etc).

You will also notice most of their headlines are positive – even though they may address a problem, they provide a solution for their audience + how to overcome the problem.

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2. USE THEIR DESIGN IDEAS

Typically the front cover has a distinctive font plus one or two different fonts. For the magazine to be consistent [yep they need to use the same method we do and earn trust with their audience] the magazine will use that font in a different colour and size. This is not to only emphasis a main story, but provides a variety, distinctive character and make it a little more exciting to jump out for the reader.

 

My biggest tip for this one: use high quality awe-inspiring images. Website resources like unsplash.com have unique and high quality images that are free to download and use for any of your visual content.

 

Your audience will more likely share distinctive images from your blog posts and social media.

Take a note next time you come across a magazine rack – stand for a moment and notice which magazine stands out for you? Ask, why does it stand out? Is it the subject or hero? Could it be the title? Or maybe the colour?

10 MYTHS ABOUT BUILDING A BUSINESS + WHAT YOU CAN DO INSTEAD

March is always a time for me to look back, as it marks the occasion when I registered my first design studio in 2013. I wanted to write this post because I like reading about what others have learned and what’s worked and even what hasn’t.

 

Besides, there’s nothing easy about being an entrepreneur, but if I can help you get where you need to be quicker, easier and do it a little more  graciously then I know I’ve done my job.

 

Myth #1: You gotta have a logo – before anything

If you think your logo is what defines your brand I hate to burst that bubble but it’s not. Don’t pour money into someone else doing your logo and colours – because chances are you will change your mind – especially in the first year or two.

 

What you can do instead: 

get yourself a temporary logo - check out The Bloom Store's Logos.

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Myth #2: Pour all your savings into a website

Similar to Myth #1 that hard earned cash you’ve saved for, avoid using it all on your website. Chances are you’ll be a lot clearer in a year or two as to where you’re heading with your brand.

 

What you can do instead:

For a fraction of the cost, purchase a WordPress template from somewhere like CreativeMarket or Studiopress. If not WordPress try Squarespace. I haven’t used these guys myself but I’ve seen them in action and they’re impressive.

 

Myth #3: I can do this on my own

Your time is money. Think of all the time that’s wasted trying to figure it all out yourself.

 

What you can do instead:

That money you saved hard for or wanted to take out as a loan for your website and logo, invest in support like a Virtual Assistant, and particularly one who specialises in WordPress. Look outfor a VA who has packages, and try them out for a month.

 

Myth #4: I need clients before I can create a portfolio

Nope, you don’t.

Instead, start creating your portfolio now. Make up a Portfolio page and start designing your best. If you haven’t had clients before now – show your talents off and don’t forget to highlight design work in the areas you want to niche in. i.e. Branding, eBook design, etc.

 

Myth #5: Follow the money

Though I never really did this, I believe that if you’re gonna do the work you might as well do stuff you love.

 

What you can do instead:

You may want to spend your energy on positive work – that lights you up and makes you feel like your not working at all - rather than run yourself ragged doing shitty work that doesn’t really doing anything for you.

 

Myth #6: Help anyone and everyone

Tempting as it may be, if you're a newbie to all this, it's easy to say yes to every job that comes your way and person who asks, "can you do this and how much?"

 

What you can do instead:

Like Myth #5 focus on work that lights you up. And yes I have been there and done that with this one. It drove me to exhaustion, though I really love helping people, I wasn’t helping myself. Those long nights with next to no life drove me down the path of discovering how important a Brand truly is.

 

Myth #7: You should do this!

Don’t let anyone tell you what you should or shouldn’t be doing when it comes to your business and being an entrepreneur.

 

What you can do instead:

Learn to trust your instincts. My advice is, do your homework and talk to people. If that idea really lights you up – go with it – do your homework and ask people if it’s something they’d be interested.

 

Myth #8: Be on all social media platforms

I hope people are not still advising this. When I started they did. It was like every single blog post that you read was, sign up to all the social media platforms and tweet and post to your  heart's content. And they also said – go where your potential clients are. I say bullshit to that. I never really understood Twitter and never particularly liked how we’re limited to some many words/characters. But yet I still managed to get dream clients - even if they were on Twitter. Don’t run yourself ragged and sign up to every social media platform.

 

What you can do instead:

Choose one or two social media platforms and figure out which one is doing it for you. Which leads me to say I’m now hanging mostly on Pinterest and Instagram… have we connected?

Myth #9: People aren’t going to like me

I’m calling BS on this one too. Here’s the truth – not everyone is going to like and so what!

 

What you can do instead: 

What you want to thrive for is being the best version of yourself AND your uniqueness and know exactly who your dream audience and people are. People want transparency – so please don’t try and be anyone else but yourself. You don't want everyone to like you... you want your dream clients to love what you do. Focus on that.

 

Myth #10: I need to create something really unique

If I said to you not every idea is original but instead, put your spin on it, will that help you move forward?

I wish I knew this one earlier on – most of the time early on that had me stopped in my tracks was that other people were doing it. I don't like what others are doing and instead of doing anything I was frozen with the idea of not being original. But now I've learnt not every idea is original and that’s okay!

 

What you can do instead:

Put your spin on it – your ideas, thoughts and your vibe.

BONUS: I DECIDED TO ADD ANOTHER ONE TO THE LIST

Myth #11: Build a business

Today it’s not about building a business but rather build a brand. Customers don’t want to deal with businesses who are driven by their bottom line; who don’t offer products and services that create customer loyalty. Usually these kinds of business offer cheap products and services and in a nutshell, really don’t care about their customers.

Businesses like Apple and Starbucks have driven this kind of ethic and brand loyalty. They stand for more than just offering products that help people overcome a problem. They have customers that drive 10 minutes out of their way just to get that special coffee for the day; they have product launches that have customers queuing at 3 am to get their hands on the latest gadget.

That’s what building a brand is really about and making it work easier and smarter for you.

Leave a comment below, I’d love to hear if one of these myths resonated with you and tell me why?

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Why You Need To Give A Shit About Your Website

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You know you’re special right? And you know that there’s no-one else in the world like you…or so you thought.

It’s not until you get online and see that what you offer and what you do is not so unique after all. It can be disappointing and a real show stopper. I know because I’ve been there too.

I’ve got a story that may help you to keep moving forward + explain why you need to give a shit about your website.

Take for instance the case where you’re sitting in a seminar. There are two business coaches standing on stage in a front of you and room of people.

The first woman speaks – she introduces herself, ‘hi my name is Sue and I coach women in business.’

You say OMG my name is Sue too! [I know if you’re name isn’t Sue, just bear with me here].

Now the second woman on stage takes the stand as speaks, ‘hi my name is Sue’  and she too mentions she’s a coach for women in business.

And now you’re thinking ‘ok, how oddly weird’. Suddenly there’s no meaning in it now all three of you have the same name. No big deal.

Back to the first Sue; she stands up and now holds the room. Sue #1 says to everyone in the room “I’ve made $1 million dollars in my business and I’m really successful. I now have the life and dream home to prove it”.

As she sits back down you’re thinking to yourself, Sue #1’s message doesn’t quite resonate but all the same, it’s impressive and open to wanting to know more.

Sue #2 now holds the mic, and she too says the same introduction – I’ve made $1million bucks in my business and I’m really successful. 

You and others in the room see on the presentation slides – fast car and dreamy home.

Assuming this kind of message impresses you and peeks your interest…you say to yourself I must go and check out their websites, and find out a bit more and see what they offer.

If you want to know how Sue #2 managed to clinch the deal, you’ll have to read on…

Now you’re on Sue #1’s website.

It’s an eye sore, it’s one hot-visual mess. You’re quite surprised. Sue #1 hasn’t put much into her website. Her blog posts are a little out dated and she hasn’t bothered with writing in almost 6 months. And when she has bothered doing a graphic they look as if a 9-year-old has done them and they’re not very pro.

 

There’s no visual flow, nothing exciting sticks out and the image of her looks like a homemade selfie.

And as you flip through her scarce content you’re intuition kicks in…something’s not quite right here…something’s a little off.

Curiosity gets the better of you, so you still jump on to the “work with me” page.

You just about fall of the chair when you the $10k price tag, not to mention what’s included in the package. You see a couple of quotes from others who have “worked” with her. Emphasis on the word work here.

They don’t mean anything to you. And you’re thinking I find it all too hard to believe Sue #1 and what she’s saying.

Something’s way off and anything she has said to you before now has fallen by the way side. It doesn’t resonate and you may now be thinking right about now, $1Million – really?

While you’re on the web you might as well jump on Sue #2’s website. But you don’t have any hope or expectations with her website, but you jump on anyway.

But this time you’re blown away! WOW, you say to yourself. The energy that oozes from Sue #2’s website has electrified all your senses.

You see that she’s put a lot of thought into her website, it’s up to date, it’s modern and the colours are vibrant; her energy and personality permeates.

Her brand + visuals are gorgeous & help give off her personality and vibe.

Ahhhh – you’ve connected [yep it can be as simple as that] – like a long lost friend.

And because she oozes confidence and seems like she knows what she’s doing, you dive into reading her frequent and recent blog posts. In fact you’re lapping up everything she has to say.

A gentle pop up box quietly interrupts, but you don’t mind and you quickly and delightfully give her your name and email address because the freebie she wants to give you is exactly what you need.

Wow! You say to yourself. This vibe that Sue #2 is quite delightful, she really seem to know her stuff. You love what you see and now you find yourself having clicked on the “work with me” page.

And this time you really do fall of your chair [but in a good way].

Sue #2 has packaged her offerings. Three lovely ways that you can work with her. The first package seems generous, it’s a no brainer and it’s affordable without breaking the bank. You can actually get to work with her.

The pricing for the middle package is a little stretch but you don’t mind saving for that over a couple of months it’s doable.

And the third package, is so much worth the value for the price tag of $10k. It’s an investment and a whole year commitment. But hey, you say to yourself, it’ll be worth it.

Something to look forward to down the track, and besides, I’m on her email list, so I’ve connected and will lap up every email she sends to me and I’ll get to know her some more and gain trust over time.

So do you see how two people with the same name, say the same message + offer almost the same service and one can triumph over the other?

And how the two Sue’s can look and seem like they know what they’re talking about yet we believe one and not the other?

Sue #2 has validated her message by showing to her website audience, that she means business!

She’s taken the time and invested back into her website and clearly see that she cares. Her brand and website does a lot of the communicating for her. She stands out with her gorgeous visual vibe and she is magnetizing. It seems like she’s thought of you.

Side note here: in all honesty Sue #2 probably wouldn’t have introduced herself back at the seminar with that kinda message as Sue #1. But hopefully you get my point and the moral of this blog post.

What can you do this week to add some of your energy to your visual vibe on your website?

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3 crucial things you should know before hiring a web developer

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Are you thinking about getting a website for your business? Maybe you're thinking of hiring a web developer to help? I want to share a few crucial things every newbie should know if they're planning on hiring a web developer.

Recently, I’ve been talking to a load of women in business and many seem to be at that stage of either about to renew their website or they’ve already invested in a new website…but have been a little disappointed with a few things. So I wanted to share 3 crucial things you probably ought to know before hiring a Web Designer.

When I first started out as an entrepreneur and setting up my little business, one of the most important tasks I knew I had to do was get a website. But I had no idea where to start, who to talk to and at that stage had not heard much about WordPress.

So I reached out to another entrepreneur who referred me on to her web developer. Great, I thought, now I’m getting somewhere.

After a few phone discussions, and $500 [and a mini heart attack], a couple of weeks later I had a blog up and running. By the way, for the record, it was a free WordPress theme but it was self-hosted.

From this experience I wanted to advise the questions you should raise [or at least think about] and what to expect from your web developer should you choose to go down this path.

 

1. TIME

Ask them what the turnaround time is, ie when can you expect to have the site up and running?

Don’t expect your website to be up instantly or even within a day or two. It will, of course, depend on several things such as their workload but even more importantly when it comes to HTML coding and all the plugin integrations it can be very time-consuming.

 

2. SERVICE

Ask what sort of service will they provide. Will they stick around? Will they help with any technical issues once your website is up and running?

I look back now and was super fortunate that my web developer provided support afterwards, in fact, he was around for a year.

All too often I hear biz owners who've had their web developer disappear and have constant issues that can end up quite costly. But I recommend you still ask if they provide the aftercare and if they do is there any additional cost.

 

3. WORDPRESS THEME

Of course, if you are looking at creating a theme from scratch and getting a web developer involved, I can only advise a few things, such as, it’ll be much more time to consume, more expensive and you’ll probably end up with a couple of grey hairs – but hey at least you can say it’s all yours. Or can you?

But when I set up my first WordPress blog my web developer set up a free theme. Bonus! Or so I thought. If you happen to hire a web developer to tweak a few things you could potentially look at few problems.

Remember this when updating your WordPress free theme – you could lose your ‘tweaked’ version and all that work will need to be repeated. The owner of this free theme has and more than likely will change any styles [layout, colour, fonts, etc] at their discretion. The whole idea of a theme owner offering it for free is that you only have access to half its capabilities with the hopes of you buying and upgrading to a full version.

If you are looking at hiring a web developer I would certainly recommend you ask around for a reputable one, one who offers ongoing support and like any deals working with a service, ensure a contract is signed by both parties. In my next blog, I will explain a super affordable and stress-free alternative than hiring a web developer.

Whatever you do…ask as many questions as you can.