In marketing, perception is reality. And more and more with the influence of social media this is drifting across into our lives. As a small business owner you probably spend a lot of time crafting your businesses brand but, there’s one part of branding you may not be considering: your personal brand. In fact, it’s just as important. a parallel to your company’s brand. You need to consider every bit of communication you’re doing personally be it through social media, your photos etc
Now this blog isn’t about how to create a personal brand, in fact it’s about looking at my personal brand (that sounds so strange when I say it) and the perception it creates on people within my close circle, those just outside it and people I don’t know. I’m going to give you the true reality and not what you see on social media.
Honestly if I had a dollar for every time someone said to me, I don’t know how you do it or you always look so busy or you’re always at events you’re so lucky…well I wouldn’t be writing this blog. I would be in Hawaii relaxing by the pool in one of my 3 holiday houses.
THE MUM HUSTLE
Just recently, in the last week to be precise, my husband a FIFO worker of 13 years, started a job in Perth. (Check back in with me in 2 months to see how it’s really going!) We were pretty lucky as he had a good roster of 8 days, 6 days but it when you’re trying to run a business, manage everything at home and be the primary carer to an almost 3 year old and have a demanding senior dog, shit gets real…fast! I constantly had people telling me I don’t know how you do it, you manage it so well with everything you do. I would just smile and say well I’m used to it. Truth is I never got used to being left for a week to try and manage everything. It was damn hard, but then I would remember that there were some working mums out there with more than one kid and their husbands did 2 – 4 weeks on at a time, so it soon put it into perspective.
I remember one day in particular it was 5pm, my I was trying to cook dinner, my toddler was in the cupboard then the fridge then the cupboard, pulling everything out to eat as she wanted dinner right then, the dog was grumbling as he was hungry and kept getting pushed around by the toddler, my phone started beeping to see if I got an email, then it started ringing and I looked around and said to myself…”I give up”. I put the dog out, bundled the toddler up and went out to Hans for dinner. But this is the photo you would have seen on Instagram. Nothing to give you the impression I was pulling my hair out.
Here is one from our Behind the Brands event a few weeks ago in Perth. Don’t Mel and I look nice, all put together. Reality – its filter, I had been up since 5:30am, only went to bed at midnight so was dead tired and my feet were killing me. And had been working on this event for ages. But hey!
SOCIAL MEDIA WORKSHOP
We had such a great turn out to this workshop and was so happy with how it went. And by all accounts looking at this image it all went accordingly to plan and was great.
Reality – I had to hold this workshop myself. 4:30am the morning of the workshop I got a call from Kat and her daughter was really ill in hospital. Kat was emotionally and physically drained and also pregnant at the time. I was up after the call trying to arrange the collection of the food Kat had organised and another person to come and help me with registrations.
Lucky my husband was home that week so the toddler was taken care of. Kats husband met me at the venue with the food, I called our previous intern who thank goodness could come and help and an amazing attendee who arrived early helped set it up.
Kat and I always say we are a bit cursed for our workshops. The very first one we ever held I ended up in hospital the night before with gastro, Kat’s daughter has been in hospital twice the night before and hasn’t been able to attend and my daughter had croup and I couldn’t attend. Thank goodness there are two of us!
On my personal Instagram I do tend to share a more unfiltered view of what it’s like being a working Mum, but there is still another whole entire story generally behind the photos. I have to semi look like I’ve got it together right! Your brand covers your appearance, behaviour, values – it’s how you present yourself to the world. But don’t forget we’re all human. This is the approach with taken on Instagram with Gloss Marketing, we want it to be a raw behind the scenes look, not all pretty pictures, but we still control the type or image and what we post.
Next time you see someone’s glossy social media that looks like they are perfectly put together and don’t have a care in the world…just remember that perception is reality and guaranteed there is a story behind their photos.