II. Brand Discovery
Digital Content Creation Course
A brand is more than its logos, fonts, and colors. You can breathe life into your brand by using your authentic voice and intention.
Before you create content, you must first clearly define your intent.
Your Brand Narrative
Historically, storytelling has shaped who we are. It is the thread that connects us. In this digital age, we still seek that same connection. Sharing stories through content connects. The story of who you are and your business is unique to you. The beauty of creating your own content is that you determine YOUR authentic voice. As the business owner, you are uniquely able to define your WHY.
A brand voice is the personality of your brand and business.
Every brand has its own voice. Think of it as the personality of your business. It can be positive, friendly, sassy, mindful, professional, funny or a combination of these characteristics. Try to think of the brand personality as your reputation and the type of customer service you provide. The tone of your content will create the connection with your community.
Take a moment to reflect and write down 3-5 characteristics that authentically embodies your brand.
The brand tone is the subtleties to communicate your brand voice.
Think about how you speak to your significant other versus how you speak to your friends and how you speak to your clients. There are differences in how we communicate depending on the audience and the same can be applied with your content.
The tone of your content depends on the audience. You can share your brand voice with varying tones on different platforms which we will discuss more in the Content Strategy section.
Most companies would separate who they are from their business. There's no right or wrong way to market your brand. Whether you choose to be the face of your company or completely separate from your brand is up to you. Creating an authentic voice in your brand starts with the owner and the intention. You define what is authentic to your brand. More than likely, who you are and what you have to offer will resonate most with your customers and clients.
Identify your Brand Story + Intention
This section guides you in defining your brand story and intention. Think about who, what, when, where, how and most importantly the why of your business. Your brand narrative goes beyond communicating what your offerings are. This worksheet provides a practice in communicating, using your authentic voice.
Who are you? How are you the expert on this product or service?
What do you offer? What is the problem you're trying to solve with your product or service?
What value are you bringing to your target customers' lives?
Where are you located and where do you offer your services?
Was there a specific story about how you started your business? Were you in another job and decided to follow your passion to become an entrepreneur? How did you finally take the leap?
Your unique experiences shape your offerings. What sets you apart?
The most important part of your brand story is your why.
Take your time discovering your intention.
TIP: If you find it difficult to write, imagine speaking to your customer in-person. Think about how you describe your business to someone in-person. Define the tone you use. As the business owner, you are uniquely able to define your WHY. Trust your intuition in determining your intention.
Case Study: Kristine Lo
As a photographer, I started my creative career as a fashion brand owner. This is unique to me and provides me with insight that other photographers don't have. I'm able to infer the needs of my clients (brand owners) because I was in the same role previously. I also set myself apart because of my unique experiences. I offer a holistic perspective on my previous roles as creative director, designer, finance manager and social media marketer. I've worked with a diverse set of clients ranging from emerging and established brands to agencies and influencers. I can visually communicate a brand's intention, products and services from years of cultivating the practice that started with my first fashion brand.
If writing your own narrative or identifying the unique quality of your products or services does not feel so straightforward, look for inspiration.
Take a moment to look at the brands and businesses that inspire you.
While consuming their content, think about what they are communicating to you in an Instagram or blog post.
How are they making you feel? Can you identify their tone? What type of visuals do they share?
I suggest looking at the brands you love to spark your inspiration, but be mindful of not copying exactly what others are doing or creating. Copying and imitating others only dilutes your own unique brand story and value. It's much more valuable to create and share using your own unique, authentic voice.
Extra Credit. Below are some supplemental reading on Brand Purpose and Intention.
Before you move on to this week's lessons, please review the previous week's lessons by completing the worksheet below:
Using your notes from the Brand Discovery worksheet, define:
1) Your brand intention, your why.
2) The solution or value you provide to your target customers' lives.
3) Your unique experiences that shaped your offerings.
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