What is your brand? Thoughts from a small business human December 30, 2017 11:54
Over the years and all those shows and events Ive been repeatedly asked, "Is this a brand?" or "Is this your brand?" and every time I got caught off guard as to what would be the most professional answer. Even when not feeling professional. It all kinda irked me and today I was just thinking....Why does it irk me? The truth is , there seems to be some slight tinge of stupidity and or a little insecurity on my part and the person in question. Kinda being a little judgy wudgy here but YES its my BRAND and YES its a part of me but the way you are asking it has got me thinking, there is more to me than just a BRAND. First thing that comes to mind is a mental picture of a cow on a farm and a cowboy slapping its butt wit a hot stick and hes yelping in pain at the unexpectedness, the BRANDING. Yes, the cowboy was cute in my mental picture with his wranglers and plaid shirt, and that six pack! Okay, back to task here.
Recently on one of my many coffee shop chats with an old friend we were talking shop about my future camp . Her, being a small business owner also, was sharing some story and I cant remember the story line but I do remember her saying or talking about something along the lines of , "YES!! its personal" "and don't tell me to not take it personal because its PERSONAL" This friend has a local business and a family. Her family is now being extended with cute little nuggets of grandchildren and she has an amazing husband and shop. They travel, workout, meet with friends, take adventures and love dogs and other things. They are small business owners with a "BRAND" or a "BABY" or a "HOBBY" or simply a means to express herself and make a living.
"Your smile is your logo, your personality is your business card, how your leave others feeling after having an experience with you becomes your trademark."
She is just like me, another great woman making a life for herself while supplementing her family and being a model for her children and grandchildren. What I'm trying to convey here is that SHE is all of us. No matter what title you give yourself or how you portray yourself in the world and outside your home is your Brand. Doesn't mean you have to have a storefront or a website or do shows and events. It means, if you do have a small business , it is your BRAND and how you do your business represents who you are or who you would like to be. Even though you are more than a BRAND, so much more, you are putting your hopes and dreams for the world to see and bygone! its personal !
Now.....this doesn't mean we take all things personal. There are people who are gonna not like your stuff or what you represent. Everyone has different tastes and different incomes or they simply are not buying or looking. This year has been a year of big change for me and some events have been less than spectacular in sales . I have had some really scary changes and realities. The weather has played a huge part. Ive experienced doubt for the first time ever after nine years and sometimes a burnout as caused some depression but always , always there has been that special note written, a sweet text sent or a sign from the universe to keep on going. This is life and it doesn't have anything to do with my brand but it has everything to do with ME, its personal.....
You have to not be afraid, sometimes easier said than done. That afraidness (I'm gonna make it a word) is FEAR of the unknown. Your brand may be changing into a different form, you may be unbecoming who you really are. You may be in a "lesson" that life has to teach you and you may , just maybe onto something bigger and better.
How will you present your BRAND ? and what will you say to that next person who irks you?
Is it possible the uneasiness you feel or I sometimes feel is just an insecurity that you didn't know you still had? What if your life lessons have put you in a place to share with others your story so that they might feel more ready to present themselves ?
So as I sit here with my thoughts all over the place, I hope I'm making a bit sense. Time to walk the dog, Happy Saturday and the last few days before 2018. Go out there and be who you want to be but please don't hide. You have so much to present to this world , more than you'll ever know. When someone ask you about your work or how you spend your days....Kindly respond, YES ! DAMN STRAIGHT !! This is me!