Let’s talk about one of the less-talked about tools to make your marketing more effective.

First, let me ask about your personality. Look at these sliders and consider where on these spectrums your personality might fall.

It’s probably not too hard, right? When we feel safe and valued, being in touch with who we genuinely are is pretty effortless. It’s our natural state.

And when we’re confident in our personality, we speak easily. We don’t stop at each word to consider the next. Conversation flows. Relationships take shape.

So why can communicating and connecting for our business feel so hard?

Some business owners doubt their ability to communicate effectively all.the.time. How do you even begin marketing your business if you’re stuck at step one? A way to get better at marketing is to first understand your Brand Personality.

One of the first things I do with a Brand Strategy client is explore your vision, mission and values, important pins dropped on the map to brand personality, the sum of big ideas, emotions and behaviors, just like you.

We then think about your customer and the relationship you want with them: reciprocal, grounded in authenticity (in the best, not-overused sense of the word). It’s strategic, but it’s not manipulative, gross nor predatory. It comes from a genuine place of service and aspiration.

For example, many people under the larger umbrella of what I do use the phrase “drive conversion”. Instead, I opt for “nurture conversion” because I’m not interested in pushing a customer into action. The phrase is better aligned with my own branding because I believe we can invite, instead of push, with clarity and strategy, and in integrity. It feels a lot better but is equally, and probably even more, compelling.


  • What are the words you can use to show your customer you understand what they want or need?

  • What is the tone you should strike to help them ascertain how you go about serving them?

  • What kind of imagery speaks volumes, without any words at all, in conveying all of the above, helping them feel, not just think, they’ve found what they’re looking for in you?

What about brand archetypes?

In my work shaping brand personality, I prefer sliders over traditional archetypes, and with strategy clients I use fourteen I’ve designed to really get to know you and your business before exploring any of the other substance. Why would we talk about positioning (your place in the ecosystem of competitors) or sales journeys (how clients find, engage, purchase and amplify your products and services) – all those integral strategy components – if we didn’t fully understand the heart of your business?

Contradictions* make us interesting and sliders aren’t binary. For instance, my service can be both harmonious and disruptive, the latter being reserved for when a traditional business model or ingrained belief may need to be challenged, but I tend to approach it harmoniously (I think!) because my primary objective is helping my clients find their people, the people who want to pay them, and this is a sincere, thoughtful, beautifully strategic process.

Imagine what it would be like to have a bank of words, phrases, and pictures to draw from, reliably, knowing they will bring the right customers to you.

When was the last time you thought about marketing this way? If you haven’t lately, and when you’re ready, I can help.

*I tend to be audacious and playful but can also be quite delicate. I’m super curious – see what I did there?– about you and those sliders. What’s your combo?

Content provided by Women Belong member Candice Blansett-Cummins of Smitten Creative in Chicago and everywhere else.