As the social media and marketing landscape is ever-changing and influencers and media personalities take center stage, personal branding has become an integral part of not only establishing your brand, but a way to align yourself with various commercial brands and causes that you would like to collaborate with in the future.
In a digital space where people see your account as “#goals”, it’s even more imperative that you showcase your authentic self online, as this will create a better impression of yourself both online and in reality.
Now, you’re probably wondering how being the real you, who is maybe makeup free 80% of the time or enjoys watching sci-fi films versus turning up for the sake of appearances, is so important? Your personal brand doesn’t only speak to the demographic that follows you but the brands that see themselves aligning with you based on your lifestyle and values.
The brand, Lynn Forbes, got a jump start this year! She already had the following and after her granddaughter, Kairo, was born, “Glammy” took off in 2015. She represents a new-age grandma who is youthful, energetic, on trend, fit & healthy and everything we want to be when we reach her age.
When we embarked on this journey of developing the Lynn Forbes brand, we wrestled with the idea of whether or not we should keep “Glammy” alive. Glammy is what Kairo calls her grandma but in turn, it became a household name amongst Lynn’s followers and the media who started using the term as well. Glammy represents the warmth, love, affection and wisdom of a grandmother and that is exactly what you get when you meet her, but she also incapsulates the beauty of a woman in every sense of the word. She is intelligent and oozes sophistication, glamour and confidence.
We decided to build on this persona and turn it into a brand and a business. The brand Lynn Forbes was born with According to Glammy being Lynn’s personal blog.
Who is Lynn Forbes
When defining what your brand is, you need to plot out exactly what your interests are, what you are trying to achieve in the digital space and what message you want to bring across. Personal branding is exactly that, it’s personal. As mentioned, being you could be exactly what someone else aspires to be or what a brand would find unique, as you’re not like every other travel blogger or foodie out there– you have your own quirks.
Lynn wanted to share the story of her childhood sexual abuse, her personal values and interests and be an inspiration to others. Her two main messages are “inspiring courage” and “love” which we try to carry through in whatever she posts or partakes in. Some of the interests we focused on when building her brand were:
- Being a mother & grandmother
- Charities & Causes that are close to her heart
- Simplicity – from running errands to her wardrobe
- Leading a healthy lifestyle
- Her values
- Nature & travel
Our main focus was that she remained authentic and showcase her true self and not what the media portrayed or what people expected. For example, she is completely comfortable in admitting that she seldom cooks elaborate Sunday lunches and would often buy her meals at Woolies. She’s not trying to portray the image of how to be the ultimate all–you-can-be Grandma who always has homemade cookies and milk available to feed her grandchildren when they visit. Life gets hectic and that’s what’s so great about her, she’s just like many of us who really couldn’t worry about what to serve for dinner or that your dinner party is catered by Woolworths heat up & go section – she’s relatable. So many of us try to be these magazine, cut out versions of ourselves or the stay at home Instagram mom who started her own cooking blog.
Social Media Strategy
Her largest demographic are Millennials. They relate to experiences and longevity and her brand is reassuring that it’s very possible to still look amazing and know that you still can do adventurous things without having your age looming overhead. A gap we are actively trying to penetrate, are the Baby Boomers – a generation many marketers overlook, but they are the age group that has influence and buying power.
We made a conscious decision on what elements of Lynn’s life we would portray. You won’t often see her very personal relationships/romantic relationships on social media – keeping the business side separate and showing snippets of her life.
Day to day happenings like working out doesn’t need to be posted on her feed. People often get carried away by posting everything they do including posting their lunch on to their feed… STOP! Be strategic about what you post and whether it marries up to your outlined goals and message of your brand. Every event you attend does not need to be showcased on your feed. These can be posted to Instastories as a “day in your life”.
Set a standard/worth to your brand and what you would be comfortable charging/ receiving in exchange for your services (FYI there is a formula available which will determine what your posts are worth).
For those that want to pursue being a brand influencer and would like a foot in the door, I would suggest signing up with Indahash – they make use of micro influencers as well as heavy hitters on Instagram & Facebook. Once they approve your profile you can participate in online campaigns for major brands such as Coca-Cola and Shell, and get paid to post. The fee which you are paid is based on your following and engagement.
Take time to consider & curate your content. It would be better to post one great image (that is well taken not necessarily a professional one) versus ten selfies that doesn’t add any weight to your brand.
Be consistent. If you decide every second Monday is when a new blog post goes out, stick to it. If you are going to do a photoshoot once a week or post a new image everyday then do it. There is nothing worse than when I see an account have momentum and then fizzles out because they realized it was too much effort. Building your brand is hard work! You have to put in the time and constantly try to push out great content, be it an image or vlog that is synonymous with your brand and message. You can easily spot a blogger/influencer who is dedicated and won’t settle for poor content. Their feeds are beautifully curated and the engagement on their page speaks for itself.
Branding & Presence
Sophistication, simplicity and elegance are what we kept in mind when designing her logo, livery and website. When you are considering your brand, think on how you want people to perceive you and your brand and does it evoke any emotions.
You will notice that Lynn’s logo is like a signature. As “Lynn Forbes” is the brand, it’s her stamp and sign off mark on everything she does – carrying the brand throughout.
Her colors are black, white and dove grey which resonates with elegance and sophistication. Her website is simple, with only the information that is necessary and compliments her simplicity in day to day life.
As social media is Lynn’s base of operation she needed a “channel distribution” i.e. where would she feature or be presented.
Her brand could not be one dimensional and decided to branch out into the various platforms below:
- Inspirational Speaker – PR and bookings for her speakings engagements are managed by Sheila Afari Public Relations
- Charitable Work
- Lifestyle Influencer
- Personal Blog – According to Glammy
- Conversations with Glammy vlog series – coming soon
- Online store – launching 2018
- Memoir – to be published in 2018
If you don’t have a powerful and visible personal brand, you are putting yourself at a disadvantage in almost every aspect of your professional, business and personal life. Personal branding has become a requirement for anyone looking to grow their business, get a better job, get noticed by the press, take their career to the next level or meet new, high quality friends.
As part of Glammy’s Meet & Treat Campaign, Nuecleo is giving away a social media & marketing strategy consultation to the value of R4000 – you can pick my brain about anything! The winner for the Nuecleo giveaway will be announced on Friday 27th October.