Welcome back to the Finding Your Brand Voice series here on the blog. Last week I discussed The Secret to a Powerful Brand , which was all about Finding Your Why. To me, this is the number one step in creating a successful brand. So if you missed last week’s post – the first in this series – I suggest you read it first and then hustle right back here to learn all about brand values.
Now that you’re familiar with what a Why is and its significance to your brand (allow me to reiterate… Your Why is the. most. important. aspect of your brand voice), I want to know, what is your Why?
Can you articulate it?
Can you write it down?
Does it make you get the warm fuzzies? Do you want to shout it from your roof top?
Well, in case you still haven’t put pen to paper, and have yet to express your Why, try this little exercise. Simply fill in the blank.
I do/make/help/offer/give/create ________(what)________ for ________(who)________ because _______(why)_______.
And there you go!
Now that you have your Why, let’s talk Brand Values. Also known as Core Values, these are the values that you uphold and emulate through your brand and business.
In reality there are probably a lot of values and virtues that you believe and believe in upholding through your business. But what I’m talking about today are your core values. These are the ones that will come to define your client experience and help to create the foundation upon which you build your brand.
Your Brand Values are the pillars upon which your Why resides.
Now that you have found your Why, let’s use another exercise to find your core values. Grab a piece of paper, your favorite pen and a cappuccino or glass of wine.
Don’t over think what you are writing. Just let it flow from you. If there are duplicate words, that’s okay (that might be a value that is especially important to you).
You should have a pretty good list by the time you’re done. Look over it quickly and set it aside. Come back to it in an hour or maybe in a day.
When you’re ready, grab a highlighter and circle 3-7 words that stand out to you.
If you have trouble narrowing it down read your Why again. Choose words – your Brand Values – that really speak to your Why and that speak of your brand.
See, you’re already Finding Your Brand Voice!
On a new piece of paper, write down all of your chosen Brand Values. Next to each one, write a short phrase (1-2 sentences) explaining how that value applies to your own brand.
As an example, I will share my Brand Values with you:
I seek and enhance the beauty in all my subjects and projects.
I live and work passionately.
I recognize the vulnerability in others and consciously choose to build them up.
I instill confidence in my clients by providing a solid customer experience.
I create a unique aesthetic that is recognizable. I say no to projects that do not align with that aesthetic.
Your Brand Values don’t have to look or read exactly like this. Find a way to express them that is authentic to you, your Why and therefore, your brand. For more examples, check this out.
So there you go! If you’ve been following along with the series, and doing the work, you now have your Why and your Brand Values. You go, girl!
Write out your values and put them in a place where you can see them – next to your Why. Remember the analogy of the pillars. These values support your Why. They determine the decisions you make and the way you connect with your audience. So when you’re feeling flustered, or overwhelmed, or burned out, revisit your values to get re-inspired.
Once you figure out your own brand values, share them with me in a comment below—I can’t wait to check them out!
Then, be sure to check out the next post in my Brand Voice series: Three Reasons You Need A Niche Brand.