We are always advising our clients to take time out of their businesses to work on them, rather than just in them. Time out to review their business plan. A regular check on their finances. Or sometimes just an opportunity to think about the bigger picture, rather than getting distracted by the day to day. And in the spirit of practising what we preach, yesterday we did exactly that. We invested in a brand strategy day with the brilliant Jen Spurr.
We were advised to invest in this particular activity by one of our own business advisers, whose opinion and experience we trust, and it turned out to be a hugely valuable decision.
What’s in a brand?
But before we get into what we learned, and why the day was so valuable, we need to revisit the idea of a ‘brand’. When we think about the term, our initial reaction is to think about our company name. Our logo, brand colours and fonts (ours was designed by the brilliant JWJ Design, by the way!). The visual representation of who we are and what we do. But a brand is so much more than that. It’s about who you’re talking to, what you say, and how (and where!) you say it. It’s about your values and goals. Awareness, and how people perceive you.
Your business is the body. Your brand is the soulAshley Chymiy
In other words, a strong brand is so much more than what people see on the outside. Which means that investing time and effort in considering what goes on ‘under the skin’ (via a brand strategy day!) is invaluable! Then taking the lessons learned, and applying them to how you interact with the wider world.
3 things we learned from our brand strategy day
Learning is so crucial for your business. But the act of learning is not enough. You need to reflect on what you’ve learned, and then apply it. And this blog post is my sharing exactly that – 3 things we learned from our brand strategy day.
1) Nothing beats professional advice
As business owners, being careful with our money is in our DNA. We don’t want to spend for spending’s sake. We know that the best way to grow is by being careful with our finances. This can make us reluctant to invest, and so try to do everything ourselves. Don’t get me wrong – we are very careful with money. But we are also very aware of our strengths and weaknesses, and we place HUGE value on the expertise of others.
Jen was no exception at yesterday’s brand strategy workshop. She has an absolute wealth of expertise in looking after some incredibly well-known brands and having her share this with us was invaluable. Her knowledge and advice will allow us to level-up in a way we had never imagined before.
2) External input opens doors (and minds!)
In the same way as investing in working with an expert brings with it new knowledge, having a third party work with you brings new perspective. When you work alone (or even as a partnership as we do), you end up being so close to your business. It becomes so hard to see the wood for the trees, and there may be opportunities and avenues open to you that you don’t even see!
This was very much the case with us during the brand strategy workshop. We arrived expecting to go down a particular route, but after talking around some of the questions that led us to the direction with Jen, we actually realised that there were other (better!) options available to us too!
3) Listen to your heart
As I mention right at the beginning, a brand is about so much more than the wrapping – something I knew, but somehow had forgotten. Or allowed to become ‘buried’ in the day to day. It really is about the soul of what you do – not just what and how you do it.
And our brand strategy day was a great reminder of that.
It reminded me to think about who Chloe and I are as business owners. How we want to spend our time and how we want to work. And of course what we want our business to become. Put simply, it reminded me to revisit what the real heart of Tabono is – and to listen to it.
What does that mean for my business?
You may not need a brand strategy day like we had, but if you take anything from this blog, I hope that it’s the importance of investing in your business. These things may seem like a big outlay when the invoice comes in, but if you’ve chosen your activity and the nature of your investment carefully, you will reap the rewards later!
And if that investment could be business coaching, why not discuss your needs with us at Tabono? Our business coaching programme could be exactly what you need to power your business through to the next level! All you need to do is book a Discovery Call and we’ll take it from there!