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How to Marry Your Business with Your Brand [Video]

by | Branding, Work-Life Balance

You’ve probably known those people who are so close and know each other so well that they begin to finish each other’s sentences.

This is never more clearly demonstrated than in couples who have been married for a long time or old friends who are very close.

By taking the time to develop a relationship with others and getting to truly know them you appear as if you can read their mind.

In branding and marketing, taking the time to get to know your audience can help you to learn how to anticipate and meet their needs.

You don’t have to be a mind reader to do this, but you can look like one by building a relationship with your audience.

As a married couple, we wanted to share our advice on how to achieve marital bliss in your business as well as how to get along better in your working relationships.

Since we are coming at this topic as a married couple in business our perspective will cover what it’s like being in business with your spouse.

Many think it would be too difficult or a bad idea because it depends on the health of the relationship.

However, healthy relationships whether in business or actual marriage stem from knowing your mission and values.

Knowing this helps you approach decisions by understanding the motivation behind them. This gets everyone on the same page, gives direction, and builds trust and understanding.

So how can you create a company that is the perfect marriage of business and brand?

What’s it like working with your spouse?

In the beginning, it was difficult to transition to a working relationship. We quickly learned we were much better working in different settings.

Just having our own space and environment helped us focus on our tasks so we weren’t constantly interrupting each other, but we still found times to collaborate.

Not only that, but we also had to figure out how to agree when we had different ideas of which direction we wanted to take the business.

That one took some time.

It’s actually a myth that you have to compromise. Compromise doesn’t work.

It’s not about one time we’ll do your idea and the next mine, it’s more about coming together to make a joint decision.

The reason this works so well is because we had a previously established relationship. But in business, you have to take the time to form those relationships.

Whether you’re married or going into business, it’s all about knowing what mission and values you share and how you want to carry those out.

How do I know what my mission should be in business or marriage?

You never want to enter into a business or a marriage just because it’s convenient or it makes you happy. There should always be a purpose behind it.

Knowing that purpose, whether it’s in business or marriage, helps to give you a direction
and a goal.

If you don’t have this, it’s easy to get disenfranchised and wonder why you ever went into this in the first place.

It’s easy to get caught up in the glamorous idea of changing the world, but you often don’t see your impact. At least, not right away.

True contentment comes from doing the next right thing.

In order to know that next right thing you need a map directing you to the right path and that map is your mission statement.

I like to call it your Battle Cry because it’s what keeps you and your team motivated when you have that inevitable day when everything is going wrong, everything is crashing down around you, and you just want to quit.

How do I know what path to take?

While mission is the goal you strive for, values are the steps to get there.

It’s really important you know what your values are because values are basically the beliefs you have about yourself and the world.

Behaviors stem from beliefs so knowing your values help you know what the right steps are toward your mission.

I often use the Santa Claus analogy to demonstrate this.

When you’re little and you BELIEVE in Santa you VALUE the opportunity to catch a glimpse of Jolly Ol’ Saint Nick, so you BEHAVE by waking up early to sneak a peek. But as you get older and you no longer BELIEVE in Santa, your VALUES change and as a result, so do your BEHAVIORS. Instead, you no longer VALUE seeing a man you don’t BELIEVE in so you VALUE sleeping in instead. Your BEHAVIORS have changed.

How this applies to your business or your marriage is that knowing your values will ensure you aren’t misled into following a trend or doing something just because everyone else is.

You can instead stay true to what you know you value and you won’t flip flop with every passing fad.

 

Values aren’t the compass or even the needle, values are the magnetic force pulling the needle to reveal the direction you should take.

Knowing them helps get everyone on the same page. Because when you are working with many different people with unique personalities and differing opinions you can test decisions on whether they fit the overall mission and whether they fit your values. Even when working with people with varying ideas and personalities you can find the common human thread by seeing how your values align if your creative direction may not initially.

This is so important because it keeps people at the center of your motivation rather than those trends we spoke of earlier.

People think that simply adding a new system or tool will change everything and make you more profitable but oftentimes it just makes you compromise your business or your relationships.

This can also work the opposite way, where you should consider a path but you don’t because you aren’t living your values or because you value the wrong thing.

Take Blockbuster for example. In this video, Simon Sinek talked about what caused the downfall of Blockbuster.

A little known company at the time, Netflix, came up with the idea for streaming, but Blockbuster shareholders didn’t want to pursue it because 8% of their revenue came from late fees. That shows they valued profits over people and this is one of the times they should have considered the trend, but they didn’t because they didn’t put that value first.

Knowing your values is one of the most important things you can do for your business or your marriage.

 

Final Thoughts

There’s an age-old expression of being “married to the job.”

Unfortunately, so many people work longer and harder than they need to because they haven’t considered their mission or their values.

Neglecting these puts fear at the center of your life. When you don’t take the time to figure out what you value and what the purpose is for your work you’ll be left feeling purposeless and you’ll act out of fear.

Whether you’re in a career or in a marriage relationship you need to take the time to do that difficult discovery phase and figure this out.

The great thing is when you do you’ll find that you’ll have a better work-life balance and your relationships will flourish because they are at the center of what you do.

Take the time to dive deep to find these because it will create a better culture for everyone you are working with.

Need a little marriage counseling for your brand?

I’d Like to Hear from You

Gabriel Shields Benu CreativeWhat’s your #1 takeaway from today’s article? Which topic in today’s article did you find most helpful or intriguing? Either way, I’d love to hear what you have to share so leave me comment below and let’s chat.

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Brand Tone of Voice FAQs

What is the Difference between Brand Voice and Tone?

Essentially, if Voice is what you say, Tone is how you say it. 

No matter who you communicate with, whether it’s family, friends, or strangers, you have a certain voice. This isn’t referring to the sound or pitch of your speech, although that is a part of it, we’re instead it is focused on your personality.

Voice is a unique expression of your brand through the words you choose. 

Tone, on the other hand, can be applied to your voice to create a unique emotional inflection. Applying particular tones within your voice can change the quality of the message, yet the voice remains the foundation of the messaging itself. 

What are the Types of Tones?

There are two types of Tone — Visual and Verbal.

Tone isn’t all about words, it’s also about imagery too.

When it comes to verbal tone you can choose light-hearted phrases or go a more bold route.

In art, tone can be created using a technique called chiaroscuro (Italian for light-dark) which refers to how light and shade are used. Visual tone is expressed through the contrast of light vs dark in your images.

How can I determine the right Tone for my Brand?

Know your Brand Personality.

Consider what type of content you’re creating and the purpose of that content.

Utilize the right tone style techniques.

Consider getting professional copy to ensure your tone has the maximum impact.

Conduct an Audience Survey.

Research your Audience.

What are the Three components of Tone Style?

Etymology – finding the best words for your intended meaning.

Sound – how they are pronounced.

Syntax – how those words are arranged.  Are they staccato (articulated and separate) or dense?

How can I create a proper Tone for my Brand?

First, create a Brand Voice Chart.

Conduct a “We’re This, Not That” Exercise. Essentially fill in the blanks in “We’re _______ , but we’re not _______ .” 

Try and come up with 3-5 traits.

From there create a chart using rows associated with the primary characteristics of your brand accompanied by three columns. The first column is used to describe each of your primary brand characteristics, followed by a column for “do’s” and “don’ts.”

Where should Brand Tone be used?

People are influenced by the tone you choose everywhere you go. 

It’s the URL space as well as the IRL (in real life) arena that carries your tone.

In the digital space, this consists of anything from Email, Website Content, Product Packaging, Ads, and Social Media.

However, everything from how you dress and speak, to the scripts you provide your team when they are out selling or networking can all influence your reputation. The presentation in each of these areas has to carry a consistent tone.

Kellly Shields Benu Creative

Creative Lead | Brand Architect

Kelly Shields is an entrepreneur, educator, and equestrian. She strategically and creatively positions businesses to become successful through branding. In a former life, Kelly was a 3D Apparel Design Specialist for Browzwear, a global 3D software company helping lead the advancement of 3D technology in the apparel industry.

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