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Brand Matters

Claire Bowling gives us tips on branding your blog and Instagram

Claire Bowling is a Baton Rouge native with an eye for aesthetics. Her blog, Claire B & Co. is an avenue she designed to inspire creativity and awaken inspiration through fashion, beauty, travel, and everyday life, here in Baton Rouge. Bowling began blogging in August of 2017, and since has created an aesthetic and brand for herself that’s unique among the masses. Building your own brand can be a challenge, but Bowling thinks that, no matter your style or interest, there are 10 easy ways you can turn your blog or Instagram into a brand that best represents you and your aesthetic. Be sure to check out her blog clairebandco.com and follow her on Instagram @clairebandco!

1. Using quality images. Although this may seem trivial to some, quality images are a representation of your brand. Never be afraid to experiment with your iPhone, for instance this photograph was taken with my iPhone. Sometimes the latest and greatest camera is not needed for you to capture a quality image.

2. Keep it light. Why take yourself too serious? If you are taking a picture that may look fabulous but “conceptually silly” (like leaning against a wall while peering out into the abyss) call yourself out and embrace that it is not a normal stance. One thing that is on brand for me is I am a jokester in everyday life. I love nothing more than making someone laugh, so you will catch snarky captions on my Instagram feed and throughout blog posts.

3. When it comes to Instagram, I personally like to break my feed up with different depths throughout. Ranging from close detailed shots, full outfits, a fabulous flat lay, scenery from a trip, coffee and food, or a stunning building that you spot and can’t pass up.

4. Editing photographs. Once you have decided on what you want your brand to represent and come across as, it is imperative that you come up with versions of edits that you feel complement your brand. Once you come to a final decision, stick with similar editing processes with subtle variations as needed to keep everything as cohesive as possible.

5. Planning ahead. Always having a plan for your Instagram feed is vital. When you plan things out it is easy to see the future flow of your feed. You will be surprised how much this helps build a cohesive feed.

6. Cohesive. This word should be your best friend. I strive for a cohesive blog and social media feeds, something I feel is important in building a brand for yourself. You want to keep an underlying aesthetic that represents you and expands out from what you want your core brand to be. I love all things white, blush, and blue with an overall light and airy feel, so you will always see that throughout my feed with variations. Whether your brand is light and airy, dark and gloomy, or bold and colorful, always keep it cohesive so you create your own identity that is recognizable.

7. Consistently post what is genuine to you and your brand. I feel one thing that can set you apart is having authentic and heartfelt meaning to everything you put out into the world and on any social media platform.

8. Your top 9! Think of your top 9 photographs on Instagram as your résumé to the world. Those top 9 photos are the representation of you and your brand when someone clicks on your feed. They are going to be the deciding factor whether someone decides to scroll down and may ultimately be the final decision maker if they choose to follow along with you and your journey.

9. Tell a story. Pick your “pop of color” and discretely sprinkle it throughout your feed for a cohesiveness that will always keep things flowing smoothly.

10. Letting your brand shine throughout. My blog is what I put most of my time into. A belief of mine is that Instagram may be a fleeting outlet and one day it could be a thing of the past. All you truly own is the brand you have created. Your website, blog, and business are the only outlets you are guaranteed at the end of the day. Pour your heart and soul into it and let your social media be an outside source to reflect your passion project or as I like to call it your “little engine that could.”

Photos courtesy of Claire Bowling

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