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GUT CHECK: Your Brand Needs A Makeover

Last week I shared a few red flags to be on the lookout for when it’s time to give your brand a little makeover. You can check those out HERE.

If you read those warning signs and identified with any one of them, the first step is admitting that there’s a problem.

The second step is doing something about it. The cool thing is that there are a ton of resources out there to use as you embark on your makeover, but more importantly, I’m here to help too. Consider me your brand therapist…minus the couch lol.

As we delve into yet another month filled with possibilities, I wanted to provide some guidance to get you and your brand headed in the right direction this fall. Here are a couple of ideas to marinate and sip on.

How Your Brand Appears

This isn’t just about the shoes you’re wearing. Although, a great pair of Giuseppe Zanottis can certainly make a girl’s day but I digress lol.

Do you have the same logo you had when you started your blog or company a few years ago? It might be time for a refresh. It doesn’t mean that your current logo has no value, but it might suggest that it’s no longer consistent with your current platform and messaging.

(If you don’t own a business, swap out logo for your LinkedIn profile. Same concept. If you haven’t made any updates to your profile within the last six months, you’ve got some homework to do.)

Speaking of messaging, do you have a mission statement in place? What about a sentence or two on your vision? I often believe that it’s these two elements that separate the good from the great. A mission statement provides guidance internally for your team, but it also provides some insight for the outside world on what your purpose is; why they should connect and believe in you. Good messaging is like the first bite of a cinnamon roll right out of the oven. It just feels right. Concise messaging brings everything together cohesively. If you do have both of these statements, it doesn’t hurt to give them another look. And get a second opinion or two.

Ok back to the visuals. If you are the spokesperson for your brand, do you have professional images and if so, are they current? Every day I meet individuals who are building these awesome personal brands. They have invested in cool business cards, a sick logo, dynamic website and even shelled out dough for advertising, but haven’t invested anything into images.

We live in a vapid, visual world where people size up who you are and what you do in seconds. I’m not saying it’s a good or bad thing. It’s just our reality. It is our responsibility that we always put our best foot forward. I don’t think this means you have to turn into a supermodel or anything but you should have professionally shot images for ALL of your social profiles and for your website’s “About Us” page at least. If you have a group or team, the same goes for them as well. Anyone connected to your brand’s image should look professional and current. A phone pic just won’t do. And you may be saying to yourself right now, “I don’t agree with this woman. But more importantly, I don’t have time to take pics.”

If you haven’t run into any of the red flags previously mentioned last week, then your brand may not need any of this advice. But if you have read this far, my hunch is that you sense that something’s gotta change. And we all know change is freakin’ hard. I once bought a treadmill for my house so that I wouldn’t have any excuses to not work out. It still took me a month to get on that thing.

Change is hard. Growth is uncomfortable. But your brand won’t sustain without it. Ok, let’s keep going:)

How Your Brand Connects

Unbeknownst to many, I am actually not an extrovert. I am loud and sociable but only in certain settings and for a limited window of time. Definitely a social introvert. I prefer to remain behind the scenes actually. I say this to say that I am sometimes the worst when it comes to networking and getting outside of my comfort zone. But it’s sometimes the very thing that can get a stagnate brand moving again.

Hot brands attract hot opportunities. If you aren’t seeing many of these cross your path, this is a great time to examine your current networking activities and determine where there might be room to grow.

I think we each have a networking muscle and in order for it to remain strong, you gotta work it. You gotta make time for it. And you gotta switch it up.

The energy that we possess is the energy that we attract. If you are a person that is open to new ideas, you will attract new ideas. If you are a beacon of hope, kindness and respect, you will attract and retain these types of people on your team. If you give to others with no gain in mind, you will receive what appears to be random connections, intros and projects you would have never imagined before. I can attest to this personally.

If business, sales, or opportunities are slow on your end, it’s time to shake things up a bit.

September is the perfect month to check out a group or organization you know nothing about. Trust your instincts and take a chance.

I would be remiss if I didn’t say a word or two about social media. Social has become the ultimate networking tool and can provide such awesome rewards. I’ve met so many cool, new friends as a result of Twitterbut I’ve also learned a ton following some of the most brilliant people on my IG.

As you think about your brand, I’d like you to also consider how you have been using social. Do you find yourself posting the same sorts of things all the time? Do you post at the same times? Are speaking more than you actually listen to others? Do you think about the likes before you think about the content?

It’s super easy to get into a rut when it comes to our social strategy because there isn’t really a social media police out there monitoring for quality, engaging content. Most of us are completely fine with getting random likes and using them as a barometer for how strong our engagement skills are. And this is where we get into trouble.

If you have never considered creating a social strategy for your blog, brand, business or whatever, now’s the time to harness the power of this amazing tool for the benefit of whatever it is you’re really passionate about. Need help getting started? Don’t forget your brand therapist is always here to help:)

How You Do You

I measure the level of progress in any setting by the rate of change and growth that occurs. Whether it’s relationships, your blog or even your Microsoft Excel skills, we should always be moving forward. Even if it’s at a snail’s pace, movement is movement. As long as it is FORWARD.

So you’ve updated your profile pics, made a few tweaks to your LinkedIn profile or your logo and even started attending a few new networking events each month. And still nothing.

Who you are is the business you create.

I say this so much that I know I annoy those around me, but I’ve found it to be true in so many instances.Are you someone that people like to do business with? Do your leadership skills attract healthy, compatible partnerships? When you post things on social media, do you leave people wanting to learn more?

As an entrepreneur, I’m used to the roller coasters that come with this crazy life but even still, I am aware of those moments when a change is needed.

Ok, that’s a lie. I’m THE WORST at examining my own brand lol. Fabulous at looking at yours, horrible with my own. Like a hairdresser with hot mess hair, I often put others before myself. I can only talk about the importance of a brand makeover because I too need to shake things up from time to time. We’re all in this together.

We live in a very exciting time right now because we truly have the power to construct an awesome and engaging brand platform. Whether you like social media or not, it has allowed us to take branding in our own hands.

It’s up to you not to waste it. Ok, you’ve got 30 days. Show me what you’re working with. Let’s meet back up here in a month.

January 4, 2016

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