Blog to Brand: 9 Lessons Learned from Building a Brand
It feels as if it was just yesterday. I texted my linesister Cherrelle to give the blog a last minute look. I was WAY too nerves to launch it. But instead of texting me back, she called. Which had to be bad news because she KNOWS I hate talking on the phone, and the website was probably so jacked up she couldn’t fit it all in a message.
While at work I walked into the only conference room that I could receive any signal. “JAS I LOVE IT!”
I had no more excuses to offer. Nothing else to work on. The website that I tweaked for months was ready to be released into the world. While shaking in my boots and having a mild heart attack, I posted on Facebook…
Three years later, what was once just a blog has bloomed into a beautiful brand and growing coaching practice. I’m still amazed at the impact that The Fear Hurdler has had on people’s lives (like dang ya girl really out here touching lives). But it has been a journey, and through it all I have learned a lot. I gathered the top 9 lessons and will share with you. No matter what your dream is, these tips will give you insight and help you in your journey.
Purpose doesn’t equate to easy
A common perception is that if you do what you love to do; nothing will be hard, it will all be easy. LIES! I am 10 roles wrapped into one person. I am a writer, editor, content creator, social media manager, accountant, graphic designer, videographer, just to name a few roles. I would look at my to-do list and become overwhelmed. I thought doing it all wouldn’t be hard because..this is what I was made for. But I have learned that it WILL be hard work, long days, and times I didn’t feel like doing anything. However, once the blog post was published, coaching call was over, or the video uploaded; the sense of achievement and impact would be a feeling that made it all worth it.
Do it for your audience not your friends
When I launched my blog, people were showing me LOVE. I was hype that everyone was sharing the content and shouting me out on social media. Then month two hit. And according to analytics only TWO people were on my site for an entire week.
I felt defeated but also disappointed that everyone in my inner circle were no longer “supporting.” Trust me, if I used Facebook as my diary (you know those people who write every thought that comes to their head as a status) I would’ve made a status every hour about how it be your own people that don’t support you. But what I failed to realize is that my marketing was TERRIBLE! I would post two times a week and wonder why people weren’t sharing. Majority of the time they never saw the post. It reminded me that I didn’t start this blog so that my friends would read and support it. It was created to help free people from fear. It was good IF they supported but if they didn’t it was ALL good! (P.S: as long as they aren’t talking down about you and your endeavors , chillllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll).
You can get caught up on social media. I would see other bloggers and content creators online and attempt to replicate what they were doing so I would be POPPIN’ too. And it all FAILED….MISERABLY! It wasn’t authentic. I felt awkward and out of place trying to talk, and carefully place every social media picture. And guess what? My audience didn’t like it either (numbers don’t lie lol). But you know what does work for my brand? Me being my country, slightly corny, dream chasing, Jesus loving, t-shirt wearing tomboy self! Being Jasamine wins every time.
Effort and expectation has to match
When I started The Fear Hurdler, I had huge goals (I still do…). But there came a time that I got lazy. I wanted results without putting in the work. And when I mean work, I found myself ALWAYS doing what was comfortable instead of what would push the brand forward. I would then be frustrated when I didn’t see new results. But if I wanted a new outcome, I had to do some things that were different.
“Keep making it, until you make it” – Issa Rae
Every feature or popular post that I have experience until this point has come out of the blue. All the content that I thought would be POPPIN (Boosie faith video) never did. But when I focused on just making GREAT content, it made some noise. “10 Books Black Woman need to read in order to slay” or the Instagram feature on XO Necole were both a surprise. I never know when my time will come. But I know for SURE, it will never happen if I don’t make the content.
Maybe it is because I am a recovering perfectionist? My deepest desire is that every decision, choice, coaching session, content created, is FLAWLESS! Which has led me to prolong making any decisions or not promoting different services because it must be perfect. I’ve learned that I’m going to make mistakes. And when I do (because it WILL happen) just take a breath and RELAXXX! It is not the end of the world. Look at what I could learn in that moment, and build from it (get smarter from dumb decisions).
Talk to strangers
I’m very outgoing, but usually only to people that I know. I never knew what to say to strangers. What if I ask them how they were doing two times? (which has happened on several occasions). I’ve learned that it may feel uncomfortable the first couple of times but it’s not so bad after all. I also have been able to meet some dope people in the process and granted opportunities just because I wasn’t afraid to open my mouth and tell them what it is that I do!
Fear never goes away
I thought that after the launch that all my fears were behind me. SIKE! I was afraid to record and post videos, pursue speaking engagements, and don’t get me started on promoting my coaching services. I’ve learned that fear NEVER goes away. But you know what does happen? I know that once I push past that fear it’s not that bad! So when it does come up it no longer STOPS me from what I want to do!
Follow God EVERY TIME
God directions don’t make sense sometimes to me. But he has YET to fail me when I stop being hard headed and do what he tells me to do. I’ve learned that even when it is uncomfortable, just do what he says. It’s like when your parents use to tell you not to do certain things like don’t sit too close to the TV. They knew that it would mess up your eyes (part of the reason I have glasses now…). They knew something that you didn’t know. And God does the same. He tells gives us directions because he already KNOWS how it is going to work out in the end!
These three years have been a journey. I’ve experience both highs and lows. But everyday I learn from them both and it fuels me to continue this journey. I can’t believe it is already been THREE YEARS, I feel like I just got started. I can’t wait to see what the future holds!
Make sure to join me on the ride by subscribing to my email list. Every week I share with you a fearLESS tip to aid you on your journey to become free from fear!