Developing a brand is not a flashy affair. It is a lot of hard work, making mistakes, that add up to long-term success.
"One thing I have learned over the years is that when starting a business, you need to focus on what matters and keep things simple, especially when you are a one-person show. There is this insane expectation we put on ourselves - the one where we think we need to have all the bells and whistles in place before we can start selling our product or service.
Just throw that out the window now!
Success is not an overnight thing. Especially when you have little to no finances to invest. Though if you have a ‘bank’ to buy the full-meal deal, all the best! But for those stuck in typical ‘reality,' we need to pick our battles (a.k.a. challenges) to take on one-at-a-time.
For BOB we focused on the fact that we just wanted people to buy our books, we figured that is what the self-published community also wanted, and came up with Buy Our Books, AKA BOB for short (yes, we are on-the-nose creatives).
Well after getting out into the ‘market’ world, we realized that this is not the best place to promote our books, and the brand did not really connect with the audience we were looking to promote too. The feedback we did get was that there was support for the idea of promoting local self-publishers, and the needs communicated to us by our member authors were more in the range of community, education, and promotion.
This took us a year to uncover.
We knew in the beginning that BOB never really ‘sat’ well, but he was our guy for now. By just jumping in, we found clarity in who wanted to be and how we were misaligned at the moment. In fact, it was Marie Forleo who mentioned that "Clarity comes from engagement, not just your thoughts. You need to test things out to see what does and does not work.”
I can honestly say I feel pretty happy with our first year out. We learned that our goal was not to create a brick and mortar storefront, either in physical form on an online form. The selling of books online is a way to engage and support and spread the word about these books, but our DESIRE was to create a brand/partnership/community that would also engage and support our own unique business goals.
We are working on a re-brand right now. We have a new name and tagline created that really syncs with us and I look forward to sharing that as things get established. In fact, if you are an author and are interested to get the first look and benefit from the educational e-mail series we are creating, you can sign up here. Once things get released, you will be the first to know!"
So what was I trying to get across with my ‘behind the scenes’ look? Whenever you are in a situation to try out a new product, service or really try anything new in your business, you just need to jump in. In my last newsletter, I talked about ‘Ms. Perfection’ and in this situation, she is defiantly NOT invited to the party. Change the locks and try things. Don’t be afraid of failure, embrace it when it happens. Filter the outcome and figure out what you can learn from, change and improve on. Each failure is one step closer to improvement. So if you never fail, then you will never grow.
Okay, gonna climb down from my soapbox. Have a most amazing day!