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R is for Real

 The Case for Authenticity

photo 3If I could give you one word that sums up how to create and build a powerful Brand that works, it would be ‘authentic.’ Keeping it real is not just something you want to aim for in your romantic relationship, after all. Be real with how you communicate with your audience. Getting real about who you are as a company is the absolute first step to creating a Brand that is unique. Once you are clear about who you are and what you offer, you will have clarity about who your target audiences are. Who’s going to resonate with your Brand? Is it young, busy moms? High net worth individuals? Retired baby boomers? It makes a big difference when you truly understand your audience and you can communicate with them authentically. They will be drawn to what you’re selling when you are real.


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F is for Friendships

Finding Friends Along the Way.

photo 3 copyI recently read that Americans live to work but that Europeans work to live. I’ve thought about that quite a bit. I do think that as a culture we put ourselves into our work and often wrap our identities up with what we do to pay the bills. The question, “What do you do?” translates into how do you make a living and is used as a way to size up someone we’ve just met. As a single mother who owns her own business I do find that many of my friendships are born from my work experience. My staff and clients all become my friends. It’s hard to find the time (or the energy) to get out and do new things when you work long hours, often including weekends. Makes sense that social media has become such an integral part of our day — it’s a way to feel connected while we’re working so hard!

Recently, two friends that I’ve really enjoyed in my life have moved on with their lives — and therefore out of mine. I’ll miss seeing their cheerful faces on a regular basis, and already feel the void of the special camaraderie we shared. But, I applaud them for finding the courage to embrace new paths and wish them complete satisfaction and happiness with their respective decisions. Here’s to making the most of our workaday worlds, and to enjoying the friends we make along the way… for as long as they may last.


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C is for Clarity

What’s your point?

photo 1 copyGetting clear on your brand message is essential to successful marketing. If you’re all turned on by Facebook and Twitter and other social media sites, that’s cool; but are you clear about how you’re using these tools? Are you strategic in how you post? Are you always pointing back to your brand promise? There are many advantages to using social media, and for some businesses there are more benefits than for others. A financial institution may have less to gain by spending a lot of time in these spaces than a retail establishment or an entertainment venue, for example. But these tools do help build a tribe when used well.

The key is Clarity. Who are you? What do you stand for and how do you want your followers to respond or benefit from what you’re sharing? Getting clear eliminates the noise. And we all know how much comes across our own desks each day; it can get pretty noisy. Some folks are crazy for social media because “it’s free.” But if you’re spending a lot of time posting about irrelevant things that don’t support your brand or create real sales for your company, how much is that really costing you and your business?

If, on the other hand, your social media plan is clearly integrated with a well thought out marketing plan then you’re on the right path. You’re contributing to your brand which is distinguishing you in the marketplace. And as you do this, you’re gathering a strong tribe of people who care about what you have to say. And when they care, they listen — instead of tuning you out. When you’re clear, you’re focused and what you send out comes back to you in spades. (And, that’s a good thing.)