Treat others as you’d like to be treated yourself.

In one iteration or another I’ve heard this phrase ten or more times over the past few years. Its 1994 and I’m 10 years old – merely a school going child who is still nowhere near adulthood and definitely still learning life’s lessons, one day at a time…

.. what’s really crazy is I’m still learning the lessons of that phrase today, at age 33. As are many of you, and we take some of these timeless phrases for granted in our everyday life which means that we have no chance of ever considering it for our marketing.

“A brand is not what YOU say it is. It’s what THEY say it is”.

Marty Neumeier sums up brand perfectly, debunking the myth that we create our brand and control it – we simply don’t. However, we can steer perceptions if we really look closely at some of the elements we do have control over when it comes to our brand.

Your brand is much more than a name or a logo and not in an airy and fluffy ‘marketing’ kind of way either. It’s a very complex set of elements that create a snapshot or an impression to others of what our business is all about. Brand is a combination of the naming of our business, choosing brand colours, the font we use, the logo design and icons. We also need to consider the way we communicate with the public in writing and face to face, the way we design and decorate our place of work, the way we do business, the topics we talk about openly, customer service and many, many more elements – and that’s just the side of branding that we have some degree of control over.

“Read all about it!” used to be called on the streets – that was how we used to be enticed to buy a newspaper and find out about the latest news. It’s clearly not the same anymore. Now the buzz is all about getting an audience to ‘follow’ you, so that you constantly have ‘listeners’ to what you have to share. But its not as simple as it seems.

One question I get asked by Tech’s, Beauty Therapists and Salon Owners all the time is, “how do I get more followers on Facebook/Instagram?” It’s a good question but it’s definitely not the Holy Grail. I’m sorry to break it to you all but FOLLOWERS MEAN NOTHING. There we go – I said it!

Despite being a fairly “blue sky” thinker… I’m actually the first person to stop someone in their tracks when they start to talk about all of their great “marketing ideas” – usually because they lack any real direction, strategy or relevance to the business – one of my pet hates, in fact.

So what if you’ve just opened your new Salon, Spa, Nail bar or the like? Maybe you don’t have the plan all written out in stone just yet, and do you know what? …That’s just fine too.

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