Do you find personal branding hard? In today's episode, Tammi Heals shares why developing a solid brand strategy is important, especially as a thought leader.
Do you find personal branding hard?
In today's episode, Tammi Heals shares why developing a solid brand strategy is important, especially as a thought leader.
Tammi is the founder of Shadowcat Creative Brand Consultancy and Podcats Media Agency. She combines her passion for strategic brand and marketing with her love of podcasting and streaming to bring community-focused, feel-good strategies to independent businesses across the globe. She is the host of The Brand Lounge podcast and when she's not shouting about what she does, you can find her with her cats and a ridiculously large cup of tea at her home in the South of England.
So if you’re struggling with personal branding, tune into this episode, as Tammi Heals shares her perspective on why your logos and colours aren't the only things you should focus on when coming up with your strategy.
BY THE TIME YOU FINISH LISTENING TO TODAY’S EPISODE, YOU’LL LEARN:
● Why your brand strategy is more than logos, and colours.
● The thing most thought leaders, coaches, and consultants skip over that’s preventing them from standing out online.
● What the difference is between branding, marketing, and sales, and why you might be missing a key ingredient in your business.
If this episode inspires you in some way, leave us a review on Apple Podcasts and let us know your biggest takeaway– whether it's the importance of developing a solid brand strategy or the difference is between branding, marketing, and sales.
And while you’re here, make sure to follow us on Instagram @creativelyowned for more daily inspiration on how to effortlessly attract the most aligned clients without having to spend hours marketing your business or chasing clients. Also, make sure to tag me in your stories @creativelyowned.
To get your hands on how to write content that connects, and attracts the most aligned clients, grab it here!!
To connect with Tammi Heals:
[Kathryn]: Tammy, I am super stoked to have you on the show to talk about what personal branding is why it’s important especially for thought leaders, online experts, and course creators.
[Tammi]: Yeah, of course, thank you so much for having me on the show. It's so weird to be on the receiving end of being a guest as opposed to being a post. So I'm for all your listeners out there. I'm Tammi Heals. And I have two businesses where I'm a personal branding expert. So I have Shadowcat creative, which is a brand consultancy firm for independent businesses and thought leaders. And then my second business also specializes in the personal branding aspect and it’s a podcasting agency called Podcats Media, where we offer production and we offer marketing, branding and all of that jazz for podcasts. So kind of the same role across two different niches.
[Kathryn]: So cool. I know that is a new venture for you. And I just love that you're sharing with our listeners and fellow thought leaders that you're doing two types of things. Because I do speak to multi-passionate entrepreneurs, I am multi-passionate and that's what we chatted about on your show. So I do love that you're going to share with us both sides of your business. So I guess how did you get started in personal branding?
[Tammi]: I’ll try and do this in Cliff's notes with a nutshell kind of vibe. I was always interested in Art and Design. And that was always a passion of mine when I was growing up and it goes hand-in-hand with personal branding. When I went to university, I did animation, which was kind of half design and half my passion for filmmaking. When I left university, I fell into a graphic design role and literally fell in love with it. And I found that I had a particular strength when it came to brand strategy combined with design, which fits really well within that personal branding niche. Because a lot of branding work hinges on the brand strategy as opposed to the brand identity such as logos and colors. So it's nice to be able to wrap the two up together. And it just kind of developed from there.
[Kathryn]: Amazing. So you did work in corporate for a while once you left University, how long were you in corporate for?
[Tammi]: Oh, a good 10 to 12 years, it was quite a chunk of time that I worked in corporate doing brand strategy work. But once I'd fallen into that design role, it was more moving around different companies. But offering kind of the similar side of things, I was definitely print-based and print design, which was wonderful. And then as time passed, because as time does, the internet became more of a thing, and the whole digital aspect of personal branding took center stage. And now print is more seen as a kind of retro, which I love and feel sad about at the same time. But digital definitely has taken center stage. And now that there's so much more available through tools, techniques, and information. It's much more accessible for business owners, through leaders, course creators, and online experts to have that. So I focused more on the brand strategy as opposed to the kind of everyday design now as I did within the corporate world.
[Kathryn]: I do want to dive into how you talked about the brand strategy, what does personal branding means for thought leaders, and why is it important?
[Tammi]: Yeah, of course, I think personal branding is one of those terms that get thrown around, and everyone has their interpretation on what personal branding, brand strategy, brand identity, marketing, sales entails and requires. But for me in the way that I like to approach personal branding is the foundational core of your business. It's why you do what you do. It's the values that you hold true to yourself. As thought leaders it's the way that you want people to feel about your business. It's the experience that they have when they experience your business, that's your personal branding. And then marketing just kind of builds on that. So if your personal branding is the core of what you believe, and how you want people to feel, marketing is the way that you then communicate that to your audience. And sales are a conversation of saying, hey, you feel this way, because this is the way that we've made you feel through the way that we've communicated to you. This is the solution that we have. Do you want it? So that's the way that I like to kind of approach the three because I kind of feel like the three gets a little bit jumbled. But yeah, for me, personal branding is absolutely at the core of what you do, and how are you setting yourself apart from others.
[Kathryn]: I love how simplified you made that because I do think that people are confused about what is personal branding? What is marketing? What are sales? And how do they all work together? I know a lot of people think personal branding is just the visual elements of it, the brand identity pieces like your logo, your colors, but it's so much deeper than that. And you touched on the whole brand strategy behind it. So I want you to talk to me about that and share with our listeners, what goes into developing your personal branding?
[Tammi]: Yeah, sure. I mean, the personal branding topic is something I absolutely love so blink rapidly if I'm talking too much. When you've got the visual aspect or brand identity pieces, which is the bit like you rightly said that most people associated with personal branding, the visual part of your branding is absolutely key, because that's the way that you're presenting yourself. And that's the way that you're visually communicating to your audience. But part of your personal branding is also the messaging that you're using. So the words that you're choosing to use to communicate to your audience. And unless you know, what kind of business owner or thought leaders you want to be, because I honestly believe that your personal branding starts with you, particularly for thought leaders, online expert, or course creators, what kind of business owner do you want to be, what kind of business you want to build, what values you want to have and how you want your audience to feel. How are you ever going to be able to choose the right words and the right visuals to communicate that if you haven't done the work beforehand, it'd be kind of like saying oh, I'm going to be a spiritually based well well-being studio and then choosing like a really heavy rock grunge kind of personal branding where you're like this doesn't quite fit. And the big importance of getting your visuals and brand identity right is why brand strategy is important. As individuals, as human beings, we do not like surprises when it comes to parting with our money. And at the end of the day, we are all in business to make money. And if you are not aligning how you want to communicate visually with your messaging to your audience in the right way that's aligned with your values, when they come to work with you, there's going to be a disconnect. And as soon as you get that disconnect, it makes it harder for you to deliver better service because you're not true. But equally, your audience and your clients are going to feel that disconnect in your personal branding. And that's when uncertainty and doubt start to creep in, which then makes the whole business experience feel very rocky. So aligning all of your visuals with your entire personal branding is key to then be able to communicate visually how all of this comes together at the beginning. And it all starts with you as a business owner or thought leaders and your goals for your business.
[Kathryn]: Beautifully articulated and how you said that because it's so true, I feel like we are so focused on the sales to start, like, you're right, we do need to make sales and make money in our business. But I think that we focus so heavily on the sales, I need to get the clients, I need to get the customers, I've got this product, or I've got this service. That we forget about taking time to define our personal branding so that we can create a brand identity that’s aligned with who we are. Having your personal branding ironed out is also important to the community internally to your team. How would you recommend articulating that to your team?
[Tammi]: It's such a great question. And it's something that I'm kind of going through at the moment, I experienced it a lot more in the corporate world, because within the corporate world, how do we get our employees more engaged with the personal branding and how to buy into the brand strategy. So as independent business owners and thought leaders, we actually have that driving seat. And if you've ever been in corporate just think back to how you felt whenever you had those employee engagement things, what connected and what didn't. But at the moment where I'm building an agency as opposed to a personal brand with the podcasting business, I'm really trying to set it up from the start to make sure that the personal branding and brand strategy is communicated with anyone that comes on board. And the best way of doing that, in my opinion, would be to have a really good strong set of brand guidelines and brand identity, which is not just what your colors are, what your fonts are, but also talking about your values and talking about what you want the company to stand for, where you want them to go, how you want the business to feel and what you want the culture inside that business to be like. When you're working with other people, find those people that are excited about your business that are as excited about working with you on your business as you are.
[Kathryn]: It’s been such a pleasure chatting with you today about what personal branding is and isn’t, and why it’s important to devote time and energy to creating a solid brand strategy for your business, especially as thought leaders, online experts, and course creators.
[Tammi]: I've had an absolute blast. It's been wonderful to have another conversation with you. Thank you.