17 February 2023
Branding is all about how you present yourself to your audience, and how they respond. It’s about emotion and stories. It’s about building a friendship.
Friendships can start because you like the first impression that someone has on you, but they will only grow deeper when you are able to show that there is a real person with values, and purpose behind the first impression.
These are the two sides you need to show in your branding. The first impression and the personality to back it up.
I think the polished side of your business is a bit like putting on make up. It can cover the blemishes. It can enhance the best parts of you. It can make you feel braver, more confident, attractive. All elements that appeal to any target audience.
Confidence is key when it comes to your brand. I’m not talking fake it until you make it because I don’t believe in that. I know that if you’re here and reading this then you are already skilled and capable in your industry. You just need a brand to show off that skill and expertise. This is where the benefits of having a brand identity comes into it’s own.
Having a brand identity gives you the ability to control how you are seen. You need an identity that you feel comfortable with. If you don’t feel comfortable with it, you won’t appear confident in using it. The polished face is the one you will show in your branding every time you consciously plan an Instagram post or Facebook live. When you’ve thought about how you want to appear; and what will most attract your ideal audience to you.
There’s a lot to be said for the stripped back approach too.
Without the polish, you can be freer with your branding.
Having a raw approach can help you feel liberated from the norms that surround your industry. It shows off your authenticity and you’ll attract more of your target audience when you are honestly telling them what you’re all about. It promotes the human behind the business.
Your target audience loves to buy from a real person; show them the behind the scenes snaps, the stories, the bits that went wrong and how you solved them. Give them every chance to feel a part of your journey.
Is this an approach that requires more bravery? I think it might do.
But is that a reason to shy away from it? No it’s not.
Getting the mix right between the two sides can be tricky. I’ve written up a list of 10 authentic ways to build up your brand for you to download and use as inspiration.
My favourite brands have a great balance between polished and raw. These are the brands that show me their skills and polished outcomes but also invite me into their ‘behind the scenes’ working.
These are brands that share their opinions, their day to day comings and goings. I like these brands because they are honest, and it guides me to find them trustworthy. They are confidently speaking to their target audience and I am responding.
Branding is a fine balance between promoting your services; and appealing to your audience. You need to become a real person to your followers. Bridging the use of the polished and raw sides can be overcome in certain ways.
Use the same tone of voice in both your approaches. Always speak as you normally would.
Use the same styles of imagery. Raw doesn’t mean blurry photos are acceptable.
Use your brand identity as consistently as possible. Colours and fonts really do make it easier to recognise you.
You want your target audience to feel included within your brand. You want to resonate with them. So they start to think: “This brand is for me.”
I found it hard to mix them both when I first started my business. It’s actually the reason why I wrote up the 10 easy ways to authentically build up my brand, so that I had a guide to follow. I have templates set up for my social media and I use a grid to plan out my content.
Now I find mixing them both simple and I seamlessly mix my polished and raw content.
If you’d like to find out more about how you can achieve the branding mix then please book a call and we can talk it through.
Are you really being yourself in your branding or are you trying to be something you think you target audience wants to see.
Do you think it would be easier to promote yourself, if you weren’t trying to be someone else? ????♀️