Creating a brand doesn’t come easy. It takes hard work, dedication and an obsession with getting it right. It takes time to get to know your business at its core. It’s going beyond what your website looks like, your logo and getting back to the basics. Why am I in business? Who is my audience? What is my purpose? Where do my strengths lie and where do I want to grow? When I say “I,” I mean your brand. Because believe it or not, your brand is a living thing and is the one thing that sets you apart from your competition. Creating a brand is not something that is done overnight. It’s taking all of these things and visually, verbally and most importantly, emotionally, and putting it all together to create a story. Although there is a process to help you reach your goals, there is no scientific equation to assure you that your branding is understandable, relatable or even unique.
With all that being said, when branding is done right and a business really gets down to the nitty gritty of why their business exists, it can have killer results. Today more than ever, for businesses to be truly successful, they have to tell a story. They have to have their own unique brand identity. People want to relate to you on more than just a transactional level.
It’s no secret that this last year we have been working hard at Go Local Interactive to make sure our brand identity lines up with our core values. It’s been a huge learning experience as we ask ourselves who we are and what’s important to us. So, when we found out about the Go Blog Social: Business Edition Conference we knew it would be a great opportunity to see what other successful business owners have done to build their own brands. This event attracted people from different areas and careers who were wanting to collaborate and learn from some of the ‘best of the best’ in Kansas City. It was the perfect opportunity for us to learn more about the importance of branding and social media.
On Saturday, March 5th we made our way to the Gallery Event Space located inside of the Kansas City Power and Light District. We spent the day listening to six speakers from various backgrounds and mingling with an array of Kansas City businesses. Many of the speakers told a story about where their career began and what has made them turn their business into a successful brand. Below are some of our favorite tips and tricks that were shared.
S P E A K E R 1 | ALLISON CORRIN | Lifestyle & Portrait Photographer
- Daily routines can be visual opportunities. It’s the way you photograph these routines that show your creative eye.
- When taking photos utilize the natural light. Your eye is naturally attracted to it.
S P E A K E R 2 | KC FASHION WEEK : Teisha Barber & Phill Willoughby | Business + Legal Basics
- When starting your own business be sure to plan for the future. Write your goals down, ask yourself where you want to be in the next 3,5, 10 years.
- Make sure you do your research and are targeting the right market.
S P E A K E R 3 | FASHION COLUMN TWINS : Emily and Elizabeth | From Blog to Biz
- Recognize your strengths and weaknesses. For instance, Emily and Elizabeth didn’t know much about design or web design so they hired people who did.
- Be sure to collaborate with people in your industry and ensure that it’s a mutually beneficial relationship.
- When building your brand do your research! See what’s already been done and find what can set you apart.
- Create something that you will love and want to use yourself.
S P E A K E R 4 | HALLMARK : KELLY RIVARD | SEO Tools + Strategies
- Ask yourself “does this webpage fulfill a need or answer a question for users?” What is good for users is good for Google.
- Key Performance Indicators are not goals. The goal should be a satisfied customer.
S P E A K E R 5 | ACORN INFLUENCE : Hannah Haiston & Whitney Cook | Influencer Campaigns
- Connect your social post to real life. Saying real things to real people is how you get followers.
- Always remember your values and why you started your business in the first place.
S P E A K E R 6 | JADE ROPER | Social Influence
- Interact with your following with genuine interest.
- Determine who your brand wants to be in the eyes of the consumer:
- How do you want to be seen or perceived?
- Carve out your niche. You cannot be all things to your followers.