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  • Writer's pictureAshleigh Harvey

My branding made me want to say, HELL, NO to this whole 'start my own business' thing. But then...

Logos. Colours. Branding. I knew nothing. Which was a problem, because I was starting my own business. How do you start a business without branding? How do you design a logo? How do you brand a new business?

Well. This is Lauryn.

I know. She's GORJ, right?

Lauryn and I have been friends since we were six-years-old. That's 32 years of friendship. That is INSANE. I can't really remember how we became friends. It just happened. Organically, I guess. Like all good friendships.

I spent a ton of time at her house when we were kids. We dressed up in ballgown-looking dresses every weekend (she in blue, I in pink), and we would run around her enormous plot in Johannesburg, playing damsels in distress.

Then, we were in high school together briefly, before she moved to London to study ballet. Lauryn is one of the most beautiful ballet dancers you'll ever see. And she was deeply committed to it. Before we even met she was committed to it. Like, basically, before she could walk. When she was in the WOMB, Lauryn was doing pirouettes.

Today Lauryn is a digital business manager, and a graphic designer. And because I started my copywriting business out of the COVID FEAR (and I had no capital), she offered to do all my branding for free. FOR FREE, people. That is like...well, it's one of the greatest gifts a new entrepreneur can receive. Because without branding, you are but a pipsqueak in the small business ether.

So, this really just serves to say thank you, my friend. I love you. You're amazing. And anyone who needs a digital business manager, or a graphic designer, should connect with your beautiful face! Which they can do, here:

I know very little about graphic design. Everything I know is what Lauryn taught me in our consulting and development process. So, here are a few things to think about if you're a new business owner/start-up and the idea of branding and design is freaking you out:

1) Your colours are MAJOR. What are they? MAJOR. Your designer will help you find them but you need to have an idea of what you love. Which leads me to...

2) You have to have an idea of what you love! Your branding is the first thing people see. The colour, the logo, the layout, the look. It gives the first impression. So make sure you love it, otherwise no one else will.

3) How do you do that? What are you drawn to? What makes you excited? What food do you love? What textures are you crazy about? What colours do you wear? What are you drawn to? (Your designer should send you a brand guide to help you figure this out. So make sure this is something they offer at the beginning of the process.) Everyone is different, but I knew FOR SURE that my branding had to be an explosion of my brain on a page. It could never be what I thought people wanted to see. That's never going to work. Because it's not authentic. And the thing about running a business, is that you have to be you. Always. Everywhere.

4) You also need to get down and dirty with this stuff. Lauryn created all my branding, but I built my website. I decided where to put it all (with her advice). And it's still a work in progress, and I'm still learning. But doing that has made me a better copywriter, and it'll make my client interactions better. And who doesn't want that?

The best thing about Lauryn? She was as committed to my branding, as she was to her ballet when she was six-years-old. And that's the kind of team member you want by your side.

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Judy Dudley
Judy Dudley

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