Don’t you just love those days when you wake up in the morning and look in the mirror to see your skin has cleared up? Or when you spin around to notice the past ten weeks of spinning class have finally firmed up your back side? And the best one, your prayer to the hair gods have finally been answered and you are having one of those rare perfect hair days? Doesn’t it just make you feel great? I can just see you now doing a happy dance in your pj’s.
Now let me ask you another question. What do you see when you look in the brand mirror? Does what you see make you feel like grinning from ear to ear, or does it make you feel like you wished you had just pulled the covers over your head and gone back to sleep? If so, ask yourself why are you living with a less than stellar brand image?
We often get complacent about our brand image both on and offline. We think, “Hey, I’m really good at what I do, so what if my website isn’t the gold standard?” While it’s true, if you are really good at what you do and you already have a massive following, then the image may not be as important. However, how many of us are full to capacity with clients? How many of us have new traffic to our sites on a regular basis? How many of us are getting approached to speak at conferences? Those are the kinds of things that are impacted greatly by your brand image.
Of course, you have to be talented, but guess what, there are a LOT of talented people in the world. I just heard an NPR interview of a recent Master’s Degree graduate who was working 3 part-time jobs because he couldn’t find work in his desired career field. Do you think he’s not smart or talented? Of course he is, but competition is fierce.
In order to give yourself an advantage, you need to optimize your edge and YES you do have an edge. You just need to figure it out and then groom the heck out of it. I am often surprised by the pictures people put of themselves on their websites. I know we live in an age where things are much more relaxed than they used to be, but please people, relaxed does not mean sloppy! Your audience is paying attention to details and so should you.
I’m not suggesting you aim for perfection, but you should aim for excellence. Of course, we all have challenges and constraints, but we should work very hard with what we have to make it the very best we can. I for one am not a very good spell checker, however, since I know this is one of my weaknesses I work very hard to read and re-read my copy. There are still typos, but I aim for excellence.
Another constraint is money. Let’s face it, if we had all gobs of cash laying around most of us would pay top dollar for the best experts out there to spiff up our website and take beautiful studio pictures for our marketing materials. However, a lot of what could make our brand images better is not that expensive. It is more a matter of paying attention and taking the time to do things well than spending a lot of money.
In my last blog post I talked about Zappos and their commitment to excellence. It is a mindset rather than expenditure. When you put your best foot forward in everything you do, including your image, you reap the rewards. One of the greatest rewards is actually the way YOU feel about your brand. Just imagine waking up in the morning, opening up your computer to look at your website and thinking, “Hey, this looks awesome. I’m really proud of the way my brand looks.”
When your brand looks good, you feel happy and confident. And as I’ve said many times before, confidence is sexy and client attractive. The message you are sending out to your audience is “I care about myself and my company. I value myself and my company.” Your image represents the way you feel about yourself to the rest of the world. What do you want that message to be?
I love hearing from you!
What is the number one aspect of your brand image that would make the biggest impact if you improved it?
What companies or brands do you feel knock it out of the park with their image?
Post your answers below in the comments or find me on Facebook.
If you would like to use this article on your website or ezine, feel free! Just be sure to include the following:Heather Poduska is a Reach certified personal brand strategist, image consultant and business coach who helps women entrepreneurs create client attractive brands, polished brand images and brand communication strategies to increase their visibility and impact in the marketplace and grow their businesses. To learn even more about Heather and the Clear Voice Branding System click the link. www.clearvoicebranding.com