“Not marketing to me anymore!” How to rebrand when your business grows
“Up to now I’ve been working with individual creatives. I’ve been an individual creative. I’ve never worked in a corporation.
“Yet I’m getting invited to hold workshops in large companies and executives are coming to me for coaching.” That’s how a client I’ll call “Rita” began a consultation a while back.
“I haven’t walked in their shoes,” Rita continued. “My coach told me to market to people like myself. But in this case, I’m not marketing to me! Why would someone believe I can help them?”
Rita had fallen for the widely reported myth of, “You must tell your story. You’re qualified because you are just like the people you help. You know what they’re going through. You can help them.”
When you’re audience doesn’t share your history, find a new story.
Rita had a story that resonated with her audience of solopreneur creatives. She could share her experience of moving from a struggling solopreneur to a confident, profitable business owner. But she couldn’t tell an origin story about moving from frustrated corporate executive to confident, fulfilled professional.
Rita’s dilemma will be familiar to business owners who experience a shift, or pivot, as they grow. They start to attract clients in new markets, so they need new marketing strategies, new copy, and of course, new stories.
These shifts are inevitable. You change. Your market changes. You discover new solutions. You get invited to take on new challenges.
When business owners call me, they often believe they need to start with the common definition of a rebrand, i.e., a new website, color scheme, images, and slogan.
Pivoting calls for 3 new stories.
Story #1 — what your business will look like after you’ve made the shift
“I work with executives in Fortune 100 companies. I’m challenged to help them express their creativity through the layers of a big company. Many of them resist at first, but once they buy in they love our workshops.
“I put together a new 3-phase format for working with groups — and I work with their objectives to create the programs. I’m earning considerably more per hour and enjoy being stretched to work in a new arena. ”
Story #2 — the new success stories your new customers will share, from their perspective.
“I was challenged to be creative and think outside the box. My company has policies, guidelines, and rules for everything. Rita analyzed our needs. She did a half-day workshop where we learned to be playful and color outside the lines. It seemed strange at first and I wasn’t sure our guys and gals would go for it. But our productivity has gone up 30%. Customer satisfaction ratings have never been higher.”
Story #3 — the new origin story you tell when you’re asked, “Why did you make this shift?”
“I’m committed to making work more fun. When a Fortune 100 company executive asked how he could be more creative, I was excited about the possibility of helping him find more satisfaction in his job.
“He was so enthused, he invited me to run a workshop for the whole team. The other departments started feeling FOMO and invited me to work with them. And now I spend more time with the bigger companies, where I can reach more people and make a bigger difference.”
What will your stories look like? Suggest some narratives in the comments below.
I’ve got some free training on rebranding with stories “3 Keys To Differentiate Your Services So Clients Won’t Settle For Anybody Else”
Click here to register to join us.
And if you’d like to get the lowdown on the different stories you can use during a pivot, check out my book on Amazon — Grow Your Business One Story At A Time. It’s currently in kindle form but you don’t need a kindle to read it — just a computer or smart phone.
Originally published at https://cathygoodwin.com on July 14, 2020.