I’ve contemplated this post for the past month. Part of me wanted to write a blog post reflecting on 2018, but I’m not one to look backward, so I figured it best just to look forward.
Over the past few months, I’ve been thinking about my purpose on social media and this blog.
I’ve always branded under my name, but as time passed, I realized the uniqueness of my name was also a detriment to my branding. When I’d be on the go and telling people where to find me, my name wasn’t the easiest thing to remember (or spell). Even though it’s phonetic, and it’s not long, it’s not memorable unless you hear it a few times over.
I met someone from my favorite camera brand in the elevator at a conference in Austin last November. While trying to explain to her where to find me, I realized she’s not going to be able to. And I didn’t have any business cards on hand. And let’s be real, I don’t know the last time I carried a business card for my personal brand.
I’ve also spent a lot of time thinking about the purpose behind what I write, and why I write it. I’ve always wanted my audience to feel they’re reading or viewing something of value, something that makes them feel good. In an era where social media can bring us down or make us feel inadequate, that’s the last thing I wanted to do. So how could I ensure that everything I put out there was delivering value?
All of these ideas coincided in my head and the wheels have been spinning for months. During a trip to Scottsdale last month, my brand dilemma combined with the worry of my purpose all came to the point of clarity. I realized what I wanted to do. Something about the desert is magical for me.
I wanted to go back to my original intent of what I set out – to show inspirational creative photography and travel content. But I also wanted to share my wellness journey, which I’ve been relatively quiet about online. You see, I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease two years ago, and it’s been one hell of a journey ever since. But I never knew the right way to tie in wellness and my journey with colorful, inspirational travel content. They always felt separate to me, so I would talk about my health issues on occasion on Instagram stories, but never more than once a month at best.
During this trip a few ideas were born.
Idea number one: shift my account to depict more of me beyond travel. Include creative photography projects, styling, florals, home and interior design, and lifestyle content. Let my brand be an accurate representation of who I am and what I am passionate about. And let my corporate career have a presence because after all, that is my main job even though you wouldn’t be able to tell from my Instagram.
Idea number two: launch a new brand dedicated to wellness travel, where I share my purpose, the reality of my health struggles, and how travel has been therapeutic in many ways (even before I was diagnosed with Crohn’s).
During this Scottsdale trip, even the exact brand name became apparent, and all the ideas of what I wanted it to encompass. Within hours of returning, I texted one of my close friends who’s a designer. We had worked on multiple projects together, and when I told her about these plans, she just felt it was so right and reassured me this was the way to go.
It’s funny because I spend so much time dealing with brand strategy in my corporate and freelance life, however, when it comes to your brand, it can be a struggle to see what’s best. I
Over the past month, we’ve made strides in developing this new brand. I’ve begun to ‘care less’ rather, stress less about what exactly I’m posting on Instagram. I used to spend too much time stressing if it was the right photo for my feed. Now while I consider my overall goals, I still feel that I have a bit more freedom and don’t put pressure on myself to conform in the ways that I used to before. It’s ok if I’m not in a photo for a month in a row, it’s ok if I post a mix of interior design and travel
I’ve rambled enough and I really appreciate that you’ve read this far. My new wellness travel brand will launch in the next month, perhaps in early March.
Want to know more about how I got into photography? Read this post.
You’ll see my personal brand evolve. You’ll hear more of my story. My work story, my creative story, my travel story, basically my life story. You’ll see and hear more of me. I hope you’re going to enjoy all of it as much as I think you will, and if you don’t, I’m ok with that. My little corner of the internet was always meant to be a creative place for me to express passions and interests. I’m fortunate it evolved into a business and a second career, but now that business needs to evolve into my new brand, and my personal story needs to be shared more.