Skip to main content

Brand Your Creative Business

Lesson 7 of 22

What Does Your Brand Stand For?

Megan Auman

Brand Your Creative Business

Megan Auman

Starting under


Get access to this class +2000 more taught by the world's top experts

  • 24/7 access via desktop, mobile, or TV
  • New classes added every month
  • Download lessons for offline viewing
  • Exclusive content for subscribers

Lesson Info

7. What Does Your Brand Stand For?

Lesson Info

What Does Your Brand Stand For?

What we've been talking about in the last couple of segments is this idea that a brand is an emotional connection repeated over time, so we've really been talking about what are the emotions behind your brand and what comes into that and, you know, I think we're some of us are still figuring it out a little, but we're starting to kind of drill down to that area, so studio audience what kind of real quick, just some of the emotions that you guys are working with so we can refresh everyone's. So, monica, what do you guys that I feel like? I've got this? Yeah, yeah, just like, right? I got this it's under control. Yeah, well, I found out that I would want all my pieces to sparkle so kind of finding that see making coffee like, brighter and yeah, happier, yeah, right now we're still working the booth. Yeah, I'm better. I'm back to just being pretty ing ornamented beautiful. I said their beauty makes you feel beautiful and west my products speak for yourself so you got we've got the lock in...

the and the blast. Awesome. So we know what kind of what least what we're working towards, and you know, in the last segment we looked at individual product so we started talking about how the products influence your brand and how you could have that emotional resonance and the aesthetic recognition so we looked at that individual element but now we're going toe kind of bring it back or we're gonna look at your overall business and really build that whole holistic brand that you guys are working towards so we've got the elements of your brand the products which are what people buy the visual which is what people see and the verbal which is what people say and right and so in the next two segments were going to really focusing on the verbal element of your brand so cathy kind of mention a couple times the messaging that's really what we're talking about here is sort of the messaging behind your brand and that's really critical because we want to be able to communicate really clearly so that our customers can then turn around and share those stories and talk about our brand. So in this segment what we're going to do by the end is we're really going tio can you focus on the bottom four elements here? So we're going to make sure that we have our business name in line our tagline the mission vision behind our brand and the purpose so all the sort of big picture brand elements that define what your brand does and that's we're gonna work on in this segment now we talked about the idea that you know a brand is an emotional connection built over time but it's really important that you understand why we're playing this whole branding game and the reality is that you know we don't want to be stuck in that race to the bottom compete on price right that's a really hard game to win you have to have huge economies of scale basically you have to be wal mart if you're not you're probably never gonna win that game so we don't want to be a commodity we don't want to compete on price we want to compete on purpose and emotion we want to make people feel something and we want to make people feel like they're part of something they're part of something so brands in addition to making people feel something the strongest brands really make people feel like they're part of a community they're part of a like minded group of people I know that the people who buy this brand I feel the same way about the world that I do and so that's where your messaging starts to come in as we start to help people understand that this is how my brand sees the world and then they see the world the same way and they're going to come in and really feel that sense of connection to your brand so one of my favorite business books on simon's the next book start with why and if you wanna read the whole book, you can watch he's got ted talk on and he says people don't buy what you dio they buy why you do it so this is really another way of saying what we've been talking about they don't buy what you do they buy the emotion, the story, the purpose they buy all of those things behind the product and of course he gives apple is the classic example so people don't buy apple products because they make a computer or a phone or whatever they buy because they buy into this ethos of apple, which is think differently now obviously the apple brand has morphed a lot in the last couple of years it's become much more widely adopted because of their new product mix, but if you really think back teo, I'm even just you know, a few years ago with people buying maxim even still now people spend away more money on a mac right then they do on another computer, but they willingly do that and what simon cynic is arguing is it's not because it's the best computer and it's not because it's the best design computer even though people might rationalize it that way it's because people buy into this apple ethos of think differently they want to be part of the tribe they want to be part of the group and so that's where the purpose becomes really important to your brand so instead I'm trying to sell people on the what the product and I know we just talked about the product and the product is still really important but or the how, which is the process we're trying to sell them on the y which is the purpose? Andi I think probably monica, I know we talked about this and in the last workshop is well, so but so they're really kind of getting down to like what's behind it and that is, you know, if we're talking about that visceral behavioral and reflective that we talked about with your products, the y starts to really come in with the reflective but it can also be influenced by that visceral that gut feeling of like, yes, I agree and that's really the best kind of purposes the ones that people are like yes, I totally I get it it's awesome. So that's where we're going to start with this is finding the why behind your business or finding the purpose I'm gonna use those two words interchangeably so if I say why? If I say purpose same idea so here are kind of the things that we know about creating the purpose first of all it's customer focused so this is where people get a little bit hell hung up on this idea of people don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it so then peoples makers start to think about their personal motivations, you know, I'm in business because I want to support my family or I like making things or something like that, but that doesn't resonate with the customer, so the wine needs to have this customer focused, but it also has to be deeply personal to you, so if you don't believe it, it can't work. Um, so if it's something that's totally, you know, if I said like, my purpose was that all women should obey their husbands all the time like that, wouldn't it wouldn't work because I don't believe that, right? So you have to make sure that even though it might be customer focused, you have to make sure that it's it resonates with you and then it's probably going to transcend your current product offering so it's not going to be you know, my why is, um I want to make the best diaper diaper changing pad ever write that it's? Probably not that and in the case of monica it's, probably not even how did you describe your products when we were at break you said it's, a multifunctional baby here, right? So that's, what you're that's the what but so the why is going to be, you know, to make mom's life easier like I want to make or I want to make moms you know, feel more put together whatever that isthe so that might be just like easing the stress of being a mom, whatever that is that becomes the y and then the product is your is your what? So that's kind of the difference there, so what that also means is that you could really expand exponentially. So with this multifaceted baby gear that's really great and that gives you kind of that corp product focus, but when you are saying, you know, I want to take the stress out of life for a mom, you could write a book, you could have a talk show you I mean there's a lot of different things that you could dio all falling under that point of purpose, so it gives you room if you want to expand, that doesn't mean you have tio I mean, sara, you might have a really strong focus are really strong why? And you're never getting anything would make jewelry because that's what you love like, you're just super passionate making jewelry and that's okay too, so don't feel like you have to suddenly build a lifestyle brand crazy bethany frankel empire like don't feel like you have to do that in order to have a purpose, it's just something that makes customers again feel more connected to your brand, so it has that emotional appeal people have that kind of gut emotional reaction to it, and then it's probably built around some kind of core belief, something that you really believe strongly and that's actually, something that when you're thinking about your purpose, you know, I always got a little hung up on that phrase. People don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it, I feel like that's a hard one to wrap your head around when you're trying to muddle through this, this is the one that for me really helps helped me find the focus, which is your goal is not to do business with everyone who needs what you have. Your goal is to do business with people who believe what you believe. So what is the belief that you're dealing with and who else thinks that, too? So maybe in monica's case, it's that, you know, you believe that you shouldn't have to sacrifice style to be a good mom, right? That's a that's, a big thing right there on and that resonates with a very specific group of people doesn't resonate with everyone, right? They're probably some moms who are like, I don't care about style, I just want to be the mom who's like doing this, but I think there are plenty of other moms are like but I want to give up my identity I want to give up my style that's really important, but I still want to be a really good mom and that's where your product kind of fit it so for me, this is my this is my wife I believe that the world needs more strong, confident independent women rush massoud johnny who founded girls with code your girls who code I can't even talk today would call them women who don't wait in line, right? So that's, what my brand is is this about this like strong women women who don't wait in line? I believe the world needs more of that and so that's the core of my brand and people are gonna hear that they're going to be like yes, I totally agree with you or they're gonna be like did either doesn't mean anything or makes the mad and those were not my people but the people who think this where the people who want to become that those are my people and that's what my brand is about so what we're going to do now is we're actually gonna talk through and with our with our studio audience and I want you guys to kind of jump in in the chat to and figure out what the why is behind your business what's that guiding purpose so actually we can go ahead and start with monica because we've kind of been talking about you anyway yeah I mean the why behind our business are basically what we've been saying is that we want to be able tio provide style and functionality for mom's teo keep them in control so so that's it kind of close but it's also if you think about it still that's sort of what we want to provide er and so were kind of thinking about like the bigger picture here of like what what you want the mom's world to be like you know kind of sort of thinking about it that way so say what you said it getting maybe we can we're how about something like um we want for a mom to still be fashion forward and still feel like they're really good mom yeah I think right there you know it's this idea right moms can feel stylish and moms to be stylish and fast forward and still be a great mom you don't have to sacrifice one for the other that's a really key core belief right awesome cathy I think for me it's like having a piece of art that complements your space but also is meaningful at the same time and sparks an interest in you too I mean say a lot of my pieces are small so it's perfect for like on altar or you're like your own personal space the area so well so that's still very what this is that's still though what that you dio and I actually find it really interesting because I think what we're talking about your products you were actually talking maura about purpose than you are right now so wait don't not I want to create great art for a space but like what what do you want your customers to feel what I want the world to be like how could the world be better with your business innit just well I think it's okay when it comes down to that that's a good way of kind of looking at it just sparking that inner child in you to kind of come out and experience the art for what it is for what you used to do maybe it reminds you like the glitter or the sparkle reminds you owe this reminds me of when I was a kid and I used to just be free like that kind of emotional kind of ability teo just let go and just be yourself or it's something that just reminds you of yourself that's so so what's really important when I'm hearing for yu is that yu want people tio sort of be themselves like they were when they were children before they I felt like they had had to grow up but had to grow and I think maybe something else is really like the kind of core they're so like getting back to the idea of being a child and being comfortable with who you are, right? Because that's, what kids are kids? Kids don't feel things like shame, you know they don't until they're taught to feel those things, so you're trying to get people back to that childhood sense of right I'm happy with who I am I can be any nothing like even if you're not, don't you? Don't you still like sparkle and might not be a different sparkle, but still it was motivated by sparkle from glitter, maybe from when you were little that's where you started liking it, you know? So so that's kind of one thing, so I know you've got a couple u s o a few different message is happening on your website, so this one that we're talking about here, do you think that's the most important or I know you you have a few other things kind of talked about some of those other ones that are coming out the other messages that you've been using in the past oh, like the beautiful and new things like I know you just you know you've got a couple not the messages like the beautiful, but the message is in, like, how you're explaining your branch like your actual messaging you have this idea about like childhood but that I think you have some other ways that you're sort of framing it ow ous faras colorful this and bright colorful ness is a thing and so you really think that this sort of idea of like childhood and then coming back teo like being yourself that's sort of the most important do you think element of your brand or yeah and kind of just creating that space I mean a lot of people that have bought for me before aren't really they just started liking art or they say like, oh my gosh, I didn't even think I really needed that on myspace but it really works there like I really want this piece so it's kind of sparking a different kind of not necessarily the art collector that collects like all things but it's like they feel a connection to that piece and they want to bring it home and put it in their space to remind them of whatever initial reaction they felt to that piece when they first had so I want to get you to really sort of think about like just beyond the product here so this is another way to think about this purpose question which is if your business had an anthem, what would it be? Because the idea here is that it's not about what the product does it's about how you want the world to be does that make sense? Yeah, I think okay when it comes down to that I want the person to feel confident where they are and be grateful for wherever they are in their life. Okay, perfect. So yes, do you want people to be basically you want them to be comfortable and confident in their own skin? It sounds like you're going to be happy with themselves and I think there's I think that happiness thing that we kind of keep flirting around does come in because you want them to be happy being themselves right? You want them to be happy with who they are right now in this moment yeah, because I kind of want to also remind them that you know, as kids you were just happy with simple things, right? And it's like I want you to remember that you should be grateful because there's good yes in your life and I think that's the thing is that's where you come back to the childhood is that right because as a child you're happy in the moment and you're happy with yourself and that's what you're trying to dio for people now is you want them to be happy in the moment with them they are yeah so I guess it's being present yes, like I present you can say that but I think it's also okay to say I want people to be happy with who they are right now because president is also I knew you guys both want to use that word monica wanted to use earlier on I think it is it's an important word but I think it's a word that is masquerading for like we want to use it cause it sounds really impressive but I think at the end of the day like you just you want to be happy yeah and that's okay all right, sarah I want everyone to be happy. Well, they're you know s oh, so you want everyone to be happy and is there a certain not say way that they should be happy? But I think, you know, in kathie's case we're talking about you she wants people to be, you know, happy with who they are kind of in the moment like they were kids, so for you you know you want them to be happy because they want people to love themselves why and the n and also I think that people need to I want people to know what their purpose is, ok on this earth that I think everybody has a purpose and the way to find that is to follow your passion no passions lead to your purpose on this earth, okay? If everybody did that, I think they would probably be happy and loved themselves they would be happy so so for you it's really about this idea of people following their passion to find their purpose okay and so I think in your case now then we're goingto we have to figure out what I think the connection is between that and your jewelry which is where I think you're you're fighting little it will come back to that but I think that's the kind of the overarching thing that motivates you is this idea that people you know can follow their passion to find that purpose in life and then that's gonna make them happier yes and you know, since I'm selling to women and I'm a woman and I'm the transformation thing is linked for me I don't know if that's like going too far down the path but um I know a lot of women who you know, I've been through amid the midlife thing transformation I don't call it a crise it wasn't a transformation that it was a good thing I like that I like that that's actually a really great way to put that like it wasn't a crisis, it was a transformation it's not a crisis and a lot of people are afraid of it and they're and they don't go through it and they regret it if they don't growth they will regret it and they don't let themselves go through it so I know women who are afraid to go through it so that's I went through it and I've had a lot of people say oh you're so courageous or you should write a book or whatever so I don't know I thought about my job trying to make them like a talisman like a charm where you know if people believe that that they could it could give him strength to tell them to get through go through it all through it because you're supposed tio it's a developmental phase that you're we're all supposed to go through I like it I think there's a lot they're so awesome all right we'll come back to it later but I think that you're totally they were heading somewhere good so I'm excited alright less happy go lucky so you just want you want everyone to just be happy happy all the time and feel like and feel like they do you feel like it's like people when people feel lucky they act differently right? It's confidence yeah like if you feel like lucky if you feel like you have luck on your side you're going toe be a different happier right have your person awesome were we getting some people of erm shared us what their themes would be well anthems I should say landlocked sailor says their answer will be a pirate looks at forty which is truck I don't know I don't know that either you have me all singing people given some other it's from examples baby buddhist studio says I like this are harmer but when people see an image it evokes a memory somewhere for them it could be a typewriter car address or whatever it is but seeing that image that's evoking that memory it's very powerful for them um andi the dreamer says I wanted women to experience flair and found a bit of the extraordinary in the every day but then she said I think so I'm not sure she's quite oh, but I like this idea of experiencing the extraordinary and everyday that's there's some good stuff happening there absolutely a ninja doctors I says I want people to feel supported and happy in their home that's actually that's also a really good one is just wanting people to be happy where they are in their homes yeah, perfect I saw you earlier that I thought was very interesting because this is a completely new way of thinking about it they've compared to what we've seen earlier artist sandra says I want to make the most expensive crow she ate items that people just have tohave because it's so expensive now that's a really interesting, very, very product focused. So I mean and I think you can certainly do that apple is a great example they make you the most expensive computers and people buy them, but they don't buy them because they're the most expensive so I think that there has to be something a little bit more in there that makes the customer feel like there's a reason for one thing I make crow shade items from one hundred percent yusa grown cotton because that way people know it can't be made in china and it can't be mass produced and therefore what they're paying for something of that quality yes oh and that's I think the thing where you have to think about what it is that people are paying for so this is where that like y versus what so the what is that you know, cotton grown in the u s made in the u s that's the what? But the why is that they want to know that their product where their product comes from and that it's of a super high quality and quite frankly they want to know that their product is unique because it's not being mass produced so you if you take kind of the description and bring it again into those emotions of how people want to feel that's where you really start to get into that purpose and apparently the pirate song is the jimmy buffett song oh interesting that's definitely brings up of the whole vibe eso eso as your kind of developing your purpose you wantto eventually be able to articulate it could have been that single sentence you know or a sentence or two you know, and if you guys are stuck on this just a couple more things that can really start to get you kick started here, you know, what are you most passionate about? What air your core beliefs? What are the things that you really, you know, believed to be true? And what gets kind of like your trigger going? Like what? What are your personal, like, hot button issues? Like, I hate it when I'm right, this should be different. Or I wish this wass or, you know, for me, it's, like, I wish women would just speak up and say what they're thinking and not be afraid to do that that's super important to me. So really thinking about those ideas, um, and just so you know, like, what would you like to see more of in the world, or what would you like to see less of in the world? So your, you know, your purpose might be that you want to see less waste or less trash, or you want to see less hatred or less discrimination, so you could there certainly lots of less is that could be become part of your purposes well or more of, you know, for me, my is very much like, I want to see more of those strong, confident, independent women, so working away kind of through all of these ideas and you're gonna come up with a lot but eventually you're going to start to find something that feels, you know, kind of really true to your brand and again transcends your products so that's the one thing that's really important with this idea of purpose is it transcends the products you could then write a book or you could you know, have the talk show I don't know why I decided monica's gonna have a talk show with monica's gonna have a talk show now you know, you gonna have any of those things and that doesn't mean that you have to, but you could and so the purpose really transcends what you're making now and again, this becomes your opportunity for those of you are thinking I have so many ideas I don't know what to do with them when you have this strong defining purpose that unifies what might otherwise feel like really disparate elements to your branch. So we're goingto just kind of swing through are on studio audience one more time to give our online audience an opportunity to also share the purpose so that one sentence or wanted to sentence really clearly distinctly what's the why behind your business and I know my audience is they're all looking all the studio audience looked down like I can't talk to you right now meghan um you know, I think I think I like what we came up with, which is that I believe that you don't have to give up your style to be a really attentive mom awesome what people to be reminded that there were once child and it's okay to be that happy as you were as a child when you have the piece I guess in your hope so I say we take up the first part because they wouldn't get these strong as possible so I want people to be as happy as they were as children okay, right yes, perfect yes. So I'm just condensing what I said before yeah we're just trying to make it into a really like concrete easy to explain statement well tying my jewelry to my beliefs I guess I would want my jewellery to be act as a talisman for women too not just women but anyway so you want to help so what you really want to do is you want to help people move through that transition, right? Is that sort of the idea if we take your products out of it for a second you you want teo is there a is there a better way to say that then help people through that's? Why focus on the passion because that will lead to any if they want if they're at a point where they're going through a transformation information that's that's so but if you follow your passion you will find your purpose it almost sounds like in a way you want people to feel okay with the fact that they can go through a transformation is part of what it sounds like to like it's okay like it's ok to change is almost what it is I think really for drilling down to it is what we're getting at and yes and all those other elements of finding you know, following your passion and all that but that's really what you're saying people it's okay to change and evolve yes well in fact it's better than okay great. So so what's the word that's better than okay it's healthy good its growth growth it's it's life eyes what it is now we're getting somewhere like it I don't know what my son way we're going to get there so we're working on you a little bit but that's okay I think we're getting so close okay well only vote that happiness that that you give from finding off a leak over even when you're a kid the first time you find a fully clover it give you some kind of emotion feelings only vote that so that can can have with you on people to carry happiness with them everywhere they go yeah when we get online we're getting a lot of really different answers it was just really quite fascinating little boobs says I want my customer to feel that they can create a beautiful and stylish home that reflects their unique taste or style that's I think that merits saying I want women to develop their gifts in order to be who they were created to be rose one two three says to allow parents to remain stylish and individual during a very difficult time early motherhood um and after sandra I want people to escape to daydream plan a trip to european cities that my home and personal cloths are themed around that so you don't have to just go you can plan it, you can feel it you can daydream and I think there's something to the people who are thinking if you're thinking about this idea of escape like just like making, making a way for people to escape even when they can't escape is what it sounds like and that's sort of I think the idea of a lot of products that have that feel of, you know, for lack of better word of souvenir with this idea that it transports you to somewhere else, which is really great that seems to be a recurring thing you've got something there megan you have seen a lot of people are talking about that and then just interesting I want people to really appreciate their own lives and create products that are a blessing to give and a blessing to keep so you want people to feel grateful you are gratitude sounds like a really big one they're so awesome I have an actual question came in from sweet sierra actually saying I really don't understand how to phrase my wife oh perhaps you can help rephrasing how to find it and maybe give us a concise examples that would help uh yes so the concise example so you know something like I believe the world needs more strong confident women I want people to be as happy as you were his children, right? So that's so basically this idea you know, one sentence that usually shows some kind of desire or feeling um I'm trying to think how they phrase you know, apples is like we believe everyone to think differently is essentially the idea there so that kind of phrasing, if that makes sense she's actually it's just clarify she's also in the skin care product line. So and again, this transcends product lines. So that's what's really important to remember so if you are in skin care and without knowing your product, I can't just really specifically speak with us that you know, maybe it's like you want it could be that you think people should be free of chemicals or maybe it's that you think you know, people should feel more youthful or, you know, there's a lot of different ones that could happen in there and I actually I remember I was working with someone who made a line of, like, soap and bath products, and she was telling me a little bit about her, her story, and she was saying how she actually personally gone through some serious depression, and what she discovered was that a lot of the chemicals in the products she was using were making her more depressed. So she's telling me this and she's like, so so that's, you know, that's, why I'm just talking about not winning the chemicals and was like, you're selling your literally selling happiness in a bottle that's what you're selling, you're not selling chemicals, don't you know, it's, no chemical, so you're not depressed, you're selling happiness so again, thinking about these is like a really based, visceral emotions can I think, really help you? Because it's not about the specific product it's about how it's making you feel and how you want people to feel thank you. One big girl was joining us online. Is she actually scared? Chris a lot is in the chat room because she she sounds like she's a photographer, she started. They're saying, I shoot dogs, hey was going to call the humane society, but she went on to terrify all right, well, and actually so that's, a really good one, too, so that's what you do, but, you know, what's, the purpose behind that, why are people, you know, why do people want you to photograph their dog, right? So is it because, you know, maybe it's, that you believe that a dog is equally member of the family? Well, she said, she got clarification, she's. Her purpose is to capture those fantastic moments that her subjects are just too busy creating to see. Ah, love it. Perfect.

Class Description

Every small business owner shares two common goals: increasing sales and marketing more effectively. One of the most powerful ways to achieve these goals is to define and tell the story of who you are as a creator. That story is your brand, and a strong understanding of how to tell that story to your customers will take your business to new heights.

In Brand Your Creative Business, you’ll explore what makes your business a unique brand and find ways to share it. You’ll learn about implementing a brand strategy and growing and protecting it. Megan Auman will teach:

  • Why branding matters
  • How to define your brand
  • Storytelling to promote your business
  • How to develop a strategy to implement your plans

You’ll leave this course equipped and energized to create a strong, consistent presence in every aspect of your company – from packaging to customer interaction and beyond. You’ll also develop the confidence use colors, logos, and fonts to reflect your style - even if you’re not a designer

Whether you’re an Etsy seller looking to grow or an occasional crafter trying to build a full-time business, this course will give you the tools you need to connect with customers and sell more products.


a Creativelive Student

I was drawn in immediately. Megan's ability to tender precise, goal-oriented, and REAL life experience-infused information is what captivated me the most...AND...I logged in 30 minutes late on the first day of her class. I am excited to know that her course is STILL available, and on sale a couple of days after it aired live. TY CreativeLive for this opportunity; it is truly a gift to myself which will keep on giving...I have often used storytelling to build my brand, but Megan's guidance has given me a structured approach, which I really needed. Paying it forward, and sharing her amazing course with others will be a joy, as I feel an obligation to others I know, and those I have yet to know, all who will benefit from her plethora of carefully cultivated information. Her use of emotional connections to build a brand, and to reach a solid audience based on one's authentic voice is clear, clean, and easy to follow. Thank You Megan Aumen!


This is such a great class! Great content, great advice, great examples...great, great, great!! I'm so happy that I have a clear path to create a great brand for my business. Very empowering! I especially love the bonus information, especially the video on how to make your own logo in Illustrator. Exactly the information I've been looking for. Great job, Megan!

Laura Captain Photography

I'm in the process of launching a creative business and this class was what I was looking for. With procrastination and indecision cast aside, I will now confidently plan and carry out a productive and well organized branding strategy of my own. Before this class I felt somewhat confused and overwhelmed by all the miscellaneous branding information I had been trying to piece together. Even though I already knew some of the information she covered in the class, she put her own spin on it, gave some great examples and put it in an easy to follow plan. I particularly liked the segments related to naming your business and social media branding because I had a lot of questions on those topics. I'm very excited to get started with branding my business and I'm so glad I took the time to go through Megan's class, it will be so worth it in the long run. A big shout out to Megan, I love your business branding, your jewelry and your teaching style, great work!