Over the next few posts, I’m going to take you through a different aspect of my own rebrand. It feels only right that I give you a sneaky peek into the process I went through for my own branding so you can understand how it works.
In this post, I’ll be talking a little about the overall strategy that has been developed behind my new branding. This will be somewhat of an overview as a brand strategy is rather in-depth and includes a lot around future plans for the business. Whilst I would love to talk your ear off about all the incredible ideas I’m putting in place for the future, it would somewhat ruin the surprise!
Read on to find out more about my mission, vision and values for Shadowcat going forward and share in my excitement!
Now is the perfect time to reflect on the future of a business. For me personally, my business has grown and changed dramatically since I started in July 2017 so the branding I had then, although close to my heart, no longer felt aligned to my current business.
I have found with the majority of my clients that businesses develop significantly within the first 18 months, particularly if it’s the first business you have run. You’ll have ambitions, goals and often a customer base that is different to what you originally planned. This holds true for me too.
When I started Shadowcat, I was in full-time employment, had little intention of my business becoming my main source of income and was perfectly content with it being a means to a house deposit. The turning point was gradual for me. I realised how much more impact I had with my freelance clients than in my corporate design position and how much more enjoyment I gained from working with small businesses.
Fast forward nearly three years, one house, one resignation and 6 months self-employment – I have found the niche of clients I adore working with so my original branding now feels disconnected. I’m all about intention and with these huge changes to my business and life, it’s time for something to step in that can help me step up.
Although the wording took a little time, I knew what I wanted the feeling to be. Whether corporate or business owner, my creative process and ideas have always been focused on making an impact. After all, that’s what you want as a business owner – to make an impact on someone. Branding is such a powerful tool for business. It influences buying habits and decisions, it creates advocates and sets expectations. It can be the difference between you CHOOSING to spend £1000 instead of £100 of your own free will. Why should that power be reserved for the big wigs?
Shadowcat Creative’s mission statement:
This encapsulates everything I believe. With the right strategy, visual presence and mentoring – any business can create the impact they desire.
This is the active part of a mission statement. Cool, so I want to help small businesses make an impact and realise that they can make not just waves, but tsunamis. How am I going to achieve this? By educating small businesses of the power of branding, what it is and how it can work for them. To show how branding can influence the buying process and creating a perfect, living examples with every business I work with (hello social proof). By creating the transformation with my clients, showing what is possible and making everything look damn good while do it – I lead and educate whilst making an impact of my own.
So, how does that translate through to key ideals and values that are at the core of what I do? Through my carefully chosen values and messaging of course!
Refining your values is one of the most insightful tasks you can complete for your business. It gives you a set of principles that are your checklist for every single piece of content or interaction you share with the world from your business.
Here are my refined values and some of thinking behind each:
100% I want everyone who sees my content, works with me or meets me in the world to feel like they understand branding a little better EVERY DAMN TIME. Through adding mentoring into my packages, I teach my clients how to make their new beautiful brand work for them to continue the magic of transformation, allowing them to make those waves on their own (with my full support, obvs). Through my social accounts, I want to inspire and educate around existing brands and business thinking so everyone can use branding principles to improve they messaging. Knowledge is power and I am happy to share what I know.
You are a unique piece of magic and deserve to know how damn special you are in this world. Confidence in yourself, your choices, your beliefs and your business is essential to be successful. Confidence can get you further than maybe it should, I mean, just look at Trump (shudder).
You know how when you sit in your pjs for the 5902856736th day of lockdown with a bucket of coffee and a stack of biscuits after not seeing the sun for 8 days and you just don’t feel like you could take on the world? Yeah, we want the opposite of that. That feeling of unbounded confidence in the way your business shows up FOR YOU. Because I don’t design for the business you have now. I create for the business you DREAM of having in the future. Because if you look the part, you will step up and act the part until THAT’S your new reality. Because you deserve to feel incredible every time you are your business.
I run a business my way because the corporate world just didn’t give me that fire of passion that I felt when I was working for myself. I have a unique way of looking at things, an ideas windmill, an individual way of working – these are my strengths. I do it with wit, humour and weird blend of logic and strategy mixed with absurd creativity and whimsy. THAT is my special jam.
For a long time, I felt I had to conform to be successful and many other businesses shy away from showing who they truly are for fear of judgement. But you know what, people really do buy people. Being you doesn’t mean you can’t also be sophisticated, professional or high end – you can be both. The right designer (ahem right here) can find that delicious blend of your personality and your business goals and create a brand that flows beautifully.
This is a newer addition to my list. I had client-focused as a value but really I feel like that is a given. I mean, everything I do is for my clients, current or future. Intentional sits in the space where strategy and creativity meet. Every design, choice, word and social post should be intentionally planned to contribute to the impact you want your business to have. It feels like the sweet spot that gives creative freedom, rooted in strategy and educates along the way and I am here for it.
These are just three parts of the brand strategy process I went through. You can see how each builds on itself to create a clear picture of the business I want to have and how I want to serve my audience and clients. Combined with the rest of my strategy, it created the framework that allowed me to design a visual identity that supports what I want to achieve more than how I want to look.
Like I said in the intro, I’ll be sharing more about my new brand over this week so you can get a feel for how I work, what goes into a rebrand and hopefully find some inspiration to look at your own business along the way.
If you’d like to talk more about brand strategy and how it can support your business, you can book a call with me here.
If you are ready to get your brand working for you, I’m now taking booking for branding projects starting Summer/Autumn 2020 which you can secure with a deposit ready to launch for Summer! Book a free discovery call here.
Yours intentionally – Tammi x
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