Back in 2011 I had the (what I would say, brilliant) idea to start an events company on the Isle of Wight with a friend of mine.
After a few (more than I care to admit) false starts we started getting real success through a Christmas market where all the stallholders were local makers, producers and artists. But what made this incarnation of our business more successful than the others?
Quite simply we stopped putting on events and exhibitions that we wanted to do purely to make money and started doing what our audience wanted and what we loved.
Our first ideas, although something we got very excited about, weren’t true to our values and weren’t what our local community wanted – we were out of alignment with them and us.
Once we started to research, listen to (directly or by observing) our audience and being honest about what we were passionate about we started to get very successful.
We were passionate about local handmade products but more than that we were passionate about helping local businesses thrive and our customers could see that and were passionate about that too – our values aligned.
It made marketing easy as we knew exactly who our customer was and what they wanted. It made all our business decisions easy as any idea we had went through the filter of “does this help local makers/artists/producers thrive?” if it did then it was an easy “yes, let’s do it”. We started to feel in flow with our business and audience.
Branding with alignment
Our passion and values shone out in everything we did – visually, verbally and in our actions which made us visible to not only new artisans and makers who wanted to be in our events but also to other local organisations. Our local council approached us to help with a regeneration project by putting on a weekly food market. It was something we would never have been involved in without knowing our customer and aligning with their values. Branding is very much just that – identifying your values and making sure you’re wearing them on your sleeve throughout everything.
Most people think of branding as a logo, a colour palette, a tag line but it’s much more of an alignment with your audience and how you make them feel.
Put plainly, branding can be the difference between an ok business and an amazing business, a stuck business and a business with real success and growth, a surviving business and a thriving business.
If you’re ready to delve deeper into alignment, ease and flow in your business checkout my Work With Me page for all the ways you can work with me – from 1:1 full brand strategy to my self led video courses.