• Kyia Young

How to Start Your Own Brand/Blog

Photographed by me (Camera: Canon Rebel T6 with Sigma 30mm lens)

"The keys to brand success are self-definition, transparency, authenticity, and accountability."

- Simon Mainwaring

For some time, I've been trying to figure out the best way to give advice on starting a brand. It's honestly hard to sum up what I've been through within these past few months, but I think I've learned/know enough to teach you all.

Disclaimer: This blog post might be lengthy.

The first step to starting a brand is to figure out what you like/dislike. You need to take these two categories into consideration, so you can 1) separate yourself from everyone else and 2) figure out what you specialize in.

You can't go into something with your name or brand on it without knowing what your outcomes or goals want to be. Make sure you also make your goals realistic and obtainable: don't make the mistake of spending $1,000 on equipment if you're not being realistic about being a photographer or videographer (for example).

The second step is once you figure out what you like or want to brand to the public, discover your goals/outcomes, what do you want to do with this? Now, obviously you want to receive attention and recognition for your hard work. But, for example, I wanted to start freelance writing once I graduated from college in May, so I decided to invest my time and money into creating a blog. It's an easy and "cheaper" option to being a writer & professional blogger at the same time.

The third step is discovering your outlet. How do you want to market your brand? Are you going to develop a website? How about social media? If you do want social media, which outlets are going to benefit your brand the most? All of this is something you have to consider whenever you plan on starting brand promotion or deciding how you want to begin your craft.

The fourth step is organization. How are you going to remember all of your ideas, keep track of finances from promotions, and any numbers you've gotten from connections (besides using your phone..phones go out)? You need notebooks, folders, etc. to keep you organized. Most people have small notebooks and computers for backup, just in case technology decides to fail them.

The fifth step is to remember that everything takes time. Some things happen faster for others, some things happen slower for the majority. It's okay. Don't limit yourself at all. Take time to really form your brand and start off with a small audience. Remember the more attention you get, the more criticism and eyes are bound to come with it...you want this to come whenever you've grown your brand and whenever you're ready for it.

The sixth step is keep your business "moves" to yourself. I know it's tempting to tell your friends/family your plans on how you want to combat your goals or showing them the latest logo you've come up with. However, my mom has always told me that I have to keep some things to myself. This is a major rule in being a business woman/man. Don't worry, keeping things & bringing it to your grave isn't shady. It's apart of life and you don't want to overstep your boundaries with some people you've just met in Corporate America, so start practicing this rule now.

The final step is to remember to have fun with your craft. Get creative, help others, and try to discover more about yourself that you've never recognized before.

Now, this advice is very vague. There's a lot that plays apart in starting your own business and producing your own brand. This is the outline that I would use if I was starting out again. I guarantee that if I had this advice/blog post at first, everything would've been much easier.

Some things I use to organize my thoughts and keep my blog organized:

Macbook (2016 edition, I think).

1. Computer

  • I need a computer to blog & have access to my social media outlets.

  • The world is based off social media, so a computer is clutch for promotions and for expanding your brand.

Iphone 6

2. Phone

  • Self-explanatory---you need your phone for everything (social media, email, contacting, etc.)

  • Make sure your phone is charged, just in case of emergencies. I've learned this lesson the hard way..multiple times.

can get from anywhere

3. Notebook

  • A notebook should be your guide. List your goals, achievements, outcomes, etc.

  • You can also practice organization for promotion costs and other finances so you could keep track of what you spend or buy.

  • Try to use your computer as backup for this because like I said earlier--technology can fail you.

Vistaprint

4. Business Cards

  • These are optional. This is just another way to gain promotion on a cheaper scale. I got a bundle...I think it was 500 business cards for $9.99, but I decided to be extra and get my picture on the back, so my total was like $24.

  • Pass these out and try to go to social events.

Amazon ($600)- Sony A5100 Black

5. Camera

  • If you plan on blogging, I suggest you learn your craft instead of relying on other people. Learn how to take your own pictures, invest in your own equipment, etc.

  • You want to be multifaceted when it comes to establishing your own brand, so a good quality camera is clutch for taking your own blog photos.

For each picture above, I do have a description on where I purchased each item from or specifics of what it is. Just hover over them.

This is a second disclaimer: All of the advice from my blog is based on my personal experiences. I do not google or research information to plagiarize it as my own. I want you to have a realistic readership experience, as I would want myself.

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