Thursday, September 23, 2010
branding: what I hate about it
All over the internet you'll find guides telling you that in order to promote you blog/business, online identity you need to master the secret of modelling yourself into a brand. And it drives me nuts. I don't aspire to be a brand in real life, so why must I aspire to be a brand online in order to attract attention?
Maybe this seems like a naive questions but it actually strikes me as something of a paradox in advice. I should be me, but packaged in a shiny little box, all tied up with a pretty ribbon, in order to be a marketable project.
When did we start thinking in terms of selling ourselves. I grew up believing selling yourself = selling out. So it sort of frightens me to see how this seems to be the status quo now.
Companies sell brand/lifestyle identity. Now bloggers are selling it. Whatever happened to embracing our multilayered, complicated, fascinating selves? Because I don't know about you, but I am many things beyond creator of some origami ornaments.
For instance, sometimes (often) I am a ranter.
Sometimes I exude pure Pollyanna-esque joy
Other times I wallow in depression and won't leave the house except for work
But I do always try to undermine the myth that we must be miserable in order for our art to thrive (I hate that narrative/identity)
I use big words, but I swear like nobody's business. How do I brand that?
I like literature and think reading rocks. But I read on an iKindle because honestly, well even though I like the feel of a good book... my phone weighs less and carries more, which leaves more room in my purse for other things, like yoga pants and lunch, and a lot of journals that I write in throughout the day.
What brand is that?
I like paper. But I also like paint, and photography. And other things that don't start with a P. But mostly, I'm a little bit of Crafty A.D.D. I have a list 10 feet long of things that I want to do, and maybe only a foot of them will ever really get done!
Sometimes I wanna write sloppy and talk about how great the new season of Being Erica is going to be!
I know I should use bit.ly and track all my links... but honestly, I'm way too lazy for that shit!
I want to write about what inspires me, when it inspires me. Over the summer it was crafty stuff and canning. Before that, politics. Now it's work and spirituality. But I like art, so I'll probably link it all together.
I just can't guarantee that there will ever be a Marya/Lotus Tree Craft brand. Because I'm a complicated, evolving, dynamic being and I think that should be reflected on my blog. So when I'm interested in art, I'll write about it. When I'm jonesing to bake, I'm gonna bake people. And when the world seems wrong and I need to vent, well nothing's ever stopped me before, so I'm certainly not going to stop now.
I just wish people would stop talking about branding and start talking about authenticity and living a life that allows us the space to explore and create and develop into our bestest self.