Branding
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Up Close And Professional

Lesson 3

Office

Do you see clients in your office? You want the client to feel comfortable in your presence. And you want them to trust you. And we’ve already established that wearing colours that are in tune with your Colour Tone sets the stage beautifully for this.

When picking colours for walls and furniture (if you are in a location where you can decide the colours of the walls) I suggest choosing combinations of light and medium neutral colours for these if possible, because remember you will be seeing all kinds of people, and you will be looking at that person in their chair also.

Props

You’ll need props. You need items to make your space more personable and this is a brilliant chance to express your branding. And having done the heavy lifting already by picking your brand colours, now go shopping for props. Coffee mugs. Pens. Markers. Posters. Pillows. A throw. A Kleenex dispenser in your warm and inviting medium/light colour. Dyeing the office dog your signature colour.

The possibilities are endless, and you’ll be amazed at what systematic personality this adds to your workspace. From the moment your client walks in the door, they are influenced by your authentic branding.

Olive green pillow
Olive green throw
Coral tea mug

Photos

A further use for the props in your brand colours is the way they infuse the images you post on social media with your brand identity. Your coffee cup and a couple of markers beside your computer in a photo. These things matter, also in photos of you, taken by others. The plant on the shelf in a ceramic vase echoing the colours you are wearing and the throw over the arm of your chair, in a photo taken by the journalist from the local newspaper.

Zoom background

Props play an important role in Zoom backgrounds. Find a place in your office or workspace with a neutral background that doesn’t conflict with your brand colours, and place one or two of your brand colour props clearly visible off to the side. Careful not to make it look like the potted plant is growing out of your head. And add light. Invest in a ring light or a source of full spectrum light, it will make you stand out favourable compared to the other back-lit, shaded, chaos-backgrounded participants in the Zoom meeting. And while we’re at it with useful tips, why not put a stack of books under your computer or phone or whatever you’re using for Zoom. Being well lit and looking up into the camera will take the years off your face that wearing the right colours didn’t manage to remove.

Business cards

Another use of your brand colours is when you design your business card or have someone else design them for you. It makes life infinitely easier when you’ve already decided on the colour scheme. Then all you have to agonise over is what information to include on it.

My tip is to always leave some room to write on, and choose a paper finish that allows you to write on it without the ink smearing. Using the business card when you want to write down something for someone you meet, say the name of that wine bar in Shoreditch, or the title of the book you just read that they want to remember. Write it on your business card and give that to them. It’s so personal, and it will make your business card even more useful for them.

Website

When you’re a solopreneur or sole proprietor of a business, whether you’re a personal trainer, yoga instructor or tuba teacher, your website is an extension of you. It needs to be as personal and authentic as your own appearance.

Yes, you can pick a really cool website theme and go with it but using your exact brand colours will make it the Mick Jagger rock star voice of websites instead of the computer voice of Siri.

When going through the guided steps to build your website in Thrive, you’ll get a chance enter the hex codes of the brand colours that I showed you how to extract from your colour palette, right there into the back end of the theme, and lo and behold, the whole website will be infused with your brand colours from the get-go and you don’t have to think about it again.

What can be more important than colours?

In closing, let me get one thing clear. It doesn't matter if your branding is slick as an oil spill on the I-94 and the colours as inviting as an armchair by the fireplace in a February blizzard if your content isn't relevant and your copywriting doesn't match the quality of your content. I have one word for you, and that's three words: Meat And Hair. Ash Ambirge is my heroine when it comes to writing with well, meat and hair. She has taught me to bring out my voice and use it in my business, because the real me is showing up and guiding you when I'm doing your Personal Colour Analysis, and on this website I'm also showing up, in my colours, in my own fleshy, fluffy words. Sign up for the Meat And Hair newsletter here. (it's free, what have you got to lose, aside from bland writing?)

You need both. There's just no substitute for good writing when selling your products, and using colours from your palette when branding your business. It’s no secret that I love Thrive Themes, and that’s what I’ve used to build this website, including the blog, and all the courses that this free mini course is part of.

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