New Year New You: Thinking of a new look for your business or personal brand?

I recently photographed a breakfast featuring John Symond, owner of Aussie Homeloans, where he was discussing the growth of Aussie from conception, through good times and more recently, through a tough economic climate.
 
One thing he said was essential for business success is the image you project. In his words,
 
‘You gotta look right, sound right, smell right.’
 
This seems obvious but is often overlooked by business owners and managers, at least in part. The thing about image is: you can work really hard on most parts but if you get one detail wrong it can damage the whole thing. So John is right in saying it’s not just about the ‘look’ but the ‘sound’ and ‘smell’ too – in other words, you have to address all aspects of your brand.
 
And what better time to analyse your business image and perhaps give it an overhaul than January? For many businesses, this is a quiet time and perfect for reflection and improvement to maximise chances of a profitable year ahead.

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Getting to the top is mostly about how others perceive you.

Here are some areas to consider in thinking about your business image:

  • Website – up to date, modern, attractive, easy to use, interactive, visual?
  • Printed marketing materials – do they say top quality?
  • Business cards – ask a few people what first impression they get and you’ll be surprised
  • Email signatures/stationary – consistent? Professional?
  • Social media – is it being used effectively (i.e. consistently and with purpose) and professionally at all times?
  • Personal image – are all staff projecting the same image in the way they dress, behave, speak, carry out their work?
  • Building, vehicles – what do others think when they see them? How do they feel when they walk into your space?
  • Speaking engagements and networking – for those involved, it’s important to consider both the content of what is being said as well as how it is being said
  • (And of course) photos – are ALL the photos in your online and print marketing (this includes head shots going out to media!) showing you and your business in the best way?

It’s really easy to think that others fully understand your business (your products and services, your ethos), because you know it so well yourself. Over the past few months I’ve been working on some major changes to the way our business ‘looks’ in order to reflect the true quality of clients and projects that we take on. This is still a work in progress and I’m excited to get on with it now I’m back from the Christmas break… so watch this space!

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Here are some further tools to help you think about where your brand is at and how you can take it to the next level in 2014.

Why your image matters

Do your business photos need a reality check?

What types of images to use to build your brand

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