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Are you confused about why your brand just doesn’t feel inspiring? Here are three simple ways you may be short-changing your brand.
1. Using a website that doesn’t feel like you or your organization
If you’re not resonating personally with your website, pack it up and send it home. Relying on that website is like hiring a salesperson you can’t stand, and then expecting them to do something for you. It just won’t happen. At least not in a way that’s gratifying or sustainable.
Where to start?
Consider simple but effective updates to your current site. Simplify the content. Only include what’s relevant - you don’t need to prove how smart you are to your website visitors, just how much you understand them. Stories are one of the best ways to help them relate to what you do. But keep them personal.
And throw away those stock images. Yes, professional photography costs more but good image sessions can create an abundance of original and personal images with much more value in the short term. And if they’re done well, they’ll tell your story far better than just words alone. For more about how stock images can damage your brand, check out “3 ways stock images hurt your brand”.
If you’re reluctant to send potential clients or customers to your website, that’s a sign you have to do something about it now.
2. Being Impersonal
In the rush to make sure we don’t turn anyone away, we try to appeal to everyone, and well, we just can’t.
Your brand needs to reflect your organization first and foremost and it needs to do that authentically. In a world of “fake news” and high degrees of cynicism, anything other than authenticity will turn people off.
Your brand needs to show its personality. And to do that requires a more personal approach to content and design.
How can you be more personal?
Create content that shows you understand your clients and customers. Be transparent and open. Connect with them where they are. Want some inspiration? Check out Simon Sinek’s explosive Ted Talk, “How great leaders inspire action”.
3. Focusing more on window dressing than your “why”
For years we’ve been asked for advice on who our partners are, what our pricing is, etc., as if what we do day-to-day as business owners could have any specific impact on how a different business is successful. While the principles are important, the specifics aren’t - they change all the time.
What is important to learn from other businesses and leaders is how the most successful ones have unstoppable faith in what they do and why they do it. Call it a mission, a mantra, or a movement. It’s a true and simple belief system. Best of all it becomes a lens through which all decisions can be made far more easily, quickly and meaningfully.
What do you believe? Start with a simple visioning exercise. Write the story of what you’ll be doing for your clients or customers one to two years from now. Why are you doing it? What inspires you to help others? What do you love doing for them, and why?