Your VIBE attracts your tribe 

As a woman in business, how both you AND your business look is sending messages out to the world. You are a walking, talking advert for yourself and your personal brand. We as humans, judge a book by its cover. This is why the ‘external packaging’ for both you and your business is important. How you present yourself and your business is a key part of your marketing. Getting the VIBE just right will attract your tribe, it will allow you to showcase your: 
V = vision, voice, values 
I =individuality, image, intention 
B = brilliance, brand aesthetic, belonging 
E = essence, energy, expertise 

One woman band = personal brand 

When you are a woman in business, a ‘solopreneur’, a one-woman band, you ARE your personal brand. Therefore, it’s important to give yourself the best possible chance in business that you look the part (whatever that means for you). In the professional world we like people to conform with our expectations, at least until we get to know them. Think, undertaker in a suit v a football shirt and scruffy jeans – an extreme example, but it illustrates my point. They will still be the same person, same skills, knowledge and experience but one outfit makes them look the part for the job in hand the other doesn’t. 
You want to be credible in a business setting, like networking, for example. Appearing more credible subconsciously accelerates the know, like, trust factor. And we know that this is when people are more likely to buy your stuff or make referrals. And who in business wouldn’t like more of that? 
Here are 10 check points that show a brief overview of how the same principles can be applied to both your personal style and brand identity. Working through them will help in getting your VIBE sorted and creating an aligned, cohesive personal brand. 

Creating an aligned, cohesive personal brand 

Here are 10 check points that show a brief overview of how the same principles can be applied to both your personal style and brand identity. Working through them will help in getting your VIBE sorted and creating an aligned, cohesive personal brand. 
1: Duck Words – Choose 3-5 words that help create the VIBE you want to convey. E.g warm, approachable, business-like, serious, calm, exuberant, fun etc. These words are going to become your checklist to ensure consistency and congruency across your outfits, photos, social media graphics, website etc. Being consistent helps you establish your brand. ‘If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, swims like a duck, then it probably is a duck.’ 
2: Mood Boards – These are a great starting point for inspiration for outfits and your visual VIBE that you want to create. Go old school with magazine cuttings and create a collage or check out Pinterest and Instagram for inspiration. Create a digital mood board using Canva or an app on your phone. Use your mood board as a visual guide to stay on track with the VIBE you want to create. 
3: Style Personality – This is about figuring out WHY you like something. There will be recurring themes within your wardrobe, your home and generally ‘stuff’ that you are drawn to. Ideally the things you are naturally drawn to, your personal taste, will be aligned to your VIBE. If there’s a mismatch there will be disharmony. It’s important that your personal taste doesn’t detract from your VIBE, so you may need to adjust here to stay on brand, it totally depends on what you want to convey. 

Brand aesthetics 

4: Colour - Big brands will invest big money in getting the colours just right for the business. Colour is very evocative and the psychology behind it is fascinating. Getting you colours right can make a massive difference to both your brand and personal VIBE. Go back to your duck words and mood boards, also think about what colours suit you and that you like to wear – ideally you want all of these to be in harmony for your cohesive personal brand. Colour is where I really start to geek out so I’m actively restraining myself here to keep the word count manageable. 
5: Proportion/scale – In the same way that understanding your proportions helps you figure out the kind of clothes you find more aesthetically pleasing. It’s the same kind of principles when you are creating images for your social media. Proportion is all about playing around with scale, to draw the eye and attract attention to specific areas – using capital letters, headings and other details in your social media graphics for example. 
6: Composition - Our brains are hardwired to look for pleasing patterns and balance and that’s why sometimes things don’t quite look right but we aren’t sure why. This applies to your outfits and to the images/graphics you put together for social media. There are general rules that you can learn around composition that automatically help things look better. 
Create harmony 
7: Coherence – This is about creating harmony and making sure that things ‘go together’ to bring together an overall look/vibe. For example, do all the individual elements of your outfit go together? Are you mixing and matching well? Or are you trying to make feminine summer sandals work with a heavy winter coat? If we gathered all your visual assets/ images together cross from your website/social media etc and took an overview, is there a family resemblance? 
8: Heroes/supporting cast - Think of a hero as being the star of the show. In an outfit it has enough interest to draw attention and make it exciting. In your brand graphics/image it’s the main feature. It’s best to keep to just one hero (focal point) unless your VIBE is totally dramatic or eclectic in style. The hero is the main focus and everything else is there to support it, like in the movies – a supporting cast. 
9: Contrast – From an outfit point of view, ideally you want to match your personal level of contrast in your outfit. If you’re not sure what I mean take a selfie, then turn it to greyscale using a filter- you’ll notice whether your clothing blends with your natural colouring or stands out. If it stands out the outfit is probably wearing you. Same greyscale tip works when you’re putting colours together on your images. For a softer, blended look go for low contrast, bolder looks require high contrast. 
10: Practice makes perfect -If you are experimenting and trying something new it can sometimes feel like it’s stretching your comfort zone. When it’s clothing, I recommend “the supermarket test”. You wear the new item out for a brief trip to the supermarket. It’s a good place to be out and about in public but you’re not going to be there ages if you start to feel self-conscious. Then you increase the time of wearing it incrementally until it feels natural. Relating this to branding, it’s about playing around and experimenting, practice is key. 
Be more visible, with confidence 
When you have these things sorted you put yourself out there with confidence daily. Everything feels very YOU, is cohesive, joined up and strategic because you have your own recipe to follow. You save time because you ‘own’ your look, getting dressed and being more visible becomes easier. It’s about you showing up each day loud and proud as your best, most FAB-YOU-LOUS self. You are your shop window magnetically attracting those ideal clients. They get a sense of your personality, what it might be like to work with you, and in turn, this accelerates the know, like, trust factor. Not only do you stand out in a crowded marketplace but you look credible as the expert you are, can charge your worth and that boosts your bottom line. Investing in your personal style and branding will help you develop and grow your business. 
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