I forget how much the ocean opens up creativity for me. Sitting in it on the first day here, I had a few minutes to reflect on the past 12 months at Julie Clyde Creative and realised just how far I’ve come to date but also how far I still have to work on to continually grow and develop this incredible ‘ little business that could’. SO many times I threw this business into the trash, threw my hands in the air and simply gave up. SO. MANY. TIMES. Shouty text is for me to remind myself that was the last time.
It brought up some interesting conversations with my friend, Vanessa, who I’m travelling with. She owns and runs View It Do It which is an incredible live stream business out of Norfolk, Virginia, USA. She can take her high def cameras ANYWHERE in the world and live stream your big event globally.
As we contemplated the end of day one here, we got onto a few topics which had arisen as part of the conference we are here with. There had been some tension and frustrations voiced throughout the day, which I was working my best to not jump in and offer some suggestions. I realised how common these frustrations are and why they actually happen.
When you have an organisation, you need structure. Now whether or not that is a board of advisers for your sole trader or LLC which involes a few friends, your mum and the cat or whether its a small to large comany, having directors, CEO, COO, CFO and what works for your company are imperative.
There needs to be people in these positions who are leaders. They shouldn’t be there because they’re deemed the strongest personality, or appear always in control.
This is a general observation from many businesses I’ve had the pleasure of working with. The companies who thrive and work the best together have been the ones where the CEO works with EVERYONE around themselves. Yes, It’s their ultimate decision on many things, BUT, they are not making all the decisions based on their own thoughts, agenda, ideals and what they want out of it. Even my business starting out, I had my husband as a big sounding board and a few of my business friends with a couple of my non business friends to sound ideas off. They have grown to be imperative to my own decision making and success. A great and supportive team are imperative to any growth be it in life or business.
The second key to your business is not your logo. I’m sorry that’s NOT your branding. It’s your brand MARK but not your brand. Some graphic designers create the most spectacular logos and marks and I really enjoy scrolling through websites and imagery checking those out. While these are part of what you do, in order to have a clear cut message and direction for your business, it’s imperative to your success you have a brand developer come in and work one on one with you and your board to get your messaging spot on.
If you sell toilet paper for example, and it’s the softest, whitest, prettiest designed toilet paper but your messaging says you sell gift wrap, you’ll attract the wrong audience and create a muddled brand for both yourself and your prospective clients.
Recently, one of my brands and I were talking about their brands message and their tag line in particular. For me I know when a message hits home. It’s like a huge light that goes off in my head. He was talking about his photography work and what could he have has his tag (I adore his work so this was a total thrill for me to work with him on this). It started out with bringing nature inside and creating my passion to inspire you. Which don’t get me wrong are still nice, but when he started to tell his story a little more and spoke of what emotion it brings his clients that’s when the light bulb went on for us all. He said “My mum always tells me that my work ‘Puts you there’ so maybe Place you there?”
I was hosting a workshop at the time and every single attendee looked up from their work and literally yelled at him, OH YES! You HAVE got to check out his work over at Russell Pugh Photography. We are still happily working together and I cannot wait to see where his brand and clarity drives his amazing passion and creativity.
Vanessa from View It Do It, when we first started working together’s tag line was “Where Everyone Gets a Front Row Seat” Which in itself isn’t bad, BUT it didn’t allow her clients to understand what it was she did from the get go. She changed it after we had some long branding chats to “Stream You Big Day Live”. Instantly people understand what she does and she is thriving daily.
For your brand to be fully understood you tag line is important but its also your essence and substance behind what you do. It’s your mission and vision statements. Its your commitment statements, key words, colours, font selections, messaging throughout everything you do. This is my passion and being able to watch business men and women realise their message and potential it makes me incredibly inspired within myself. At the end of the day, my clients should be, must be, more successful than I am and if they’re not, then I’m not doing my job properly.