So how do you build a digital agency from scratch? Find out what it takes in our new blog article!
In many ways, our lives are stories in which we are at once the author, protagonist, and antagonist, and each passing moment (day, month, or year) is but a chapter in the bigger narrative we get to write daily. Everyone has a story and that story is worth telling, but like with every story, whether it is good, mediocre, or bad depends on how it is told. As individuals, we all come from different walks of life and have experienced certain things that have informed our personality, character, and attitudes. These experiences make us who we are, establish our personal identity, and tell the world around us our unique story.
The same is true for businesses and organizations. Your vision, ideas, and experiences also shape the story your brand seeks to tell your target audience. Did you start a digital marketing and consulting agency because you are passionate about helping others better tell their business's story? Did you start a nonprofit that rescues animals because you are an avid dog lover who rescued your last pet? Whatever the case, your personal frame of reference likely informed your business decision. Like in your personal life, ideally, your brand will tell an authentic story that communicates who you are, what you do, what you value, where you operate, and why--of the many stories told in the marketplace at the same time--customers in your industry should choose to care about yours.
It is interesting how much of our lives are wound up in storytelling, from business to romantic pursuits. We've all heard about the elevator pitch, which is basically you telling the most condensed version of your idea or concept to someone in a position to help make it a legitimate business or successful venture. Also, in dating, we all try to sell ourselves by telling our most compelling story to our potential mate or love interest, especially at first. It is no different with branding; you must establish an authentic brand identity that tells your most compelling brand story to your target audience using language (visual and verbal) that is clear, concise, and consistent, leaving no room for confusion.
That is where a brand book comes in. A brand book is a comprehensive document that establishes your brand identity. It includes your boilerplate (about us), vision and mission statements, slogan or tagline, logos, design elements (business card, letterhead, envelope templates), writing style/voice, social media guidelines, etc. A brand book effectively establishes your brand's identity and personality so that your brand messaging, values and culture are always authentic and consistent. This creative asset comes in both PDF and PPT formats and is one of the best investments you can make to tell your business' most compelling story and enrich your brand.
Kenny, Chief Wordsmith
Too often, people talk about passion but seldom do they live it. Passion, by definition, is a “strong and barely controllable emotion.” When something is barely controllable, it is almost like an addiction; it grips you, consumes you, and doesn’t let you go until you’ve indulged in it fully. Think about that feeling of being in love, those “butterflies” in your stomach. I’m sure most of us have been there. Interestingly enough, it is that magnitude of emotion that best conveys passion.
Now, when it comes to starting a business or building a brand, you really shouldn’t indulge unless you’re passionate about what it is you’re starting. Whatever concept, idea, or service you wish to bring to birth or take to market requires more than a simple desire to have something you can call your own or so you can use the overused term, entrepreneur. It also takes more than a goal to become rich and/or famous through what you believe you have to offer the world. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing inherently wrong with these kinds of aspirations; I’m simply saying they won’t give your business or brand staying power because the road ahead is usually long, rough, and rugged.
The truth is, starting a business and taking it from startup to profitability or building a brand and taking it from concept to a household name will require that same zeal, that strong and barely controllable emotion. It is that emotion that will have you at the crossroads of should and must. “Must I continue to do what is comfortable like keeping a job I enjoy but am not fulfilled at because I can depend on a steady paycheck?” Or, “Should I dare to trust that emotion, venture out on my own and start my own brand?” That is precisely the judgment call I recently had to make when I decided to launch Enrich My Brand.
Gripped by an unyielding emotion, I chose to resign from a pretty good job with the promise of a promotion and significant raise and bonus looming at the end of the year to face the risks of the unknown–building a brand of my own. That is how I and the team poised to build Enrich My Brand got here–led by passion. I hope that my story might inspire yours; perhaps give you the courage to take a leap of faith and soar to your next venture; provided, of course, it is your passion that leads you there.
Kenny, Founder & Chief Wordsmith