Summertime is here. Time to hit the beach and enjoy all it has to offer. Clarity. Calm. Cool. (That last one might be restricted to Oregon, where the beach is almost never warm.)
Isak Dineson said, “The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears, or the sea.” Here are a 3 branding cures from the sea.
1 – Be Consistent
The ocean doesn’t send one wave up on shore, let it curl over and crash, and then stop. It keeps doing it, over and over. Not only that, it manages to do it in a way that is both the same every time, and also different. You know that every time a wave comes barreling in toward shore, it’s going to curl over and crash. But you also know there will be something a little bit different about it each time. So the waves are always worth watching.
Your branding needs to be like that too. You need to consistently be in touch with your people, one way or another, and it needs to be recognizable as you pretty much every time, but at the same time, you need to offer a little something different each time, or people will get bored and stop watching.
2 – Be Relentless
Every time you show up at the shore, the ocean is there, doing its thing. It’s doing it when the beach is full of people, and it’s doing it when nobody is watching.
Figure out what works for your business, for your business development, and keep on doing it, regardless of what else is going on. Are you just getting your business started, and short on clients at the moment? Invent a case study for yourself and work on that as if it was a client. Is your plate so full you can’t manage it all? Work the extra hours or outsource some of it, but don’t forget to keep up your business development efforts, or you’ll end up with a lull down the road.
Keep doing your thing, so that whenever the right person shows up, you’re ready to go.
(I’m not saying you should rail away at windmills that aren’t working. Use your common sense.)
3 – Be True to Who You Are
The ocean is always salt water. Salt water is at the core of what it means to be the sea. When tourists show up who want fresh water, the ocean doesn’t suddenly change and offer fresh water. Nope. It just keeps on being the salty sea. Sooner or later the people who want fresh water go find themselves a lake to jump in.
Likewise, when you run up against a potential customer who wants something different from your core offering, or something contrary to your corporate values, you shouldn’t suddenly change your stripes. Somewhere there’s a company offering just what those people want, and you should encourage them to go find that company. Even better, develop a stable of companies with different values form yours, and refer those clients on. That way everybody gets to work with the people they love, and we all have happier, less stressful lives.
Take inspiration from the beach when it comes to your branding, and enjoy your summer!