Watch This Episode of MwahTV About COO branding case study
A C.O.O. branding case study this week.
COO stands for Chief of Operations by the way.
I am featuring a Program Alumnus Michelle Lucherini. This is a great insight into how my On Her Terms Brand Program works, to help a Female expert like Michelle who is pragmatic and logical to build confidence in the creative side using the logic and structure part of branding strategy.
If that sounds a bit like you, then stick around.
About This Branding Case Study
Do you think of Branding Like This?
If you have always wondered if branding strategy is nonsense or maybe unnecessary fluff when it comes to your operational business, then by the end of this episode you will see how my On Her Terms Branding Program worked out for client Michelle Lucherini to help her build confidence about how she will show up more strategically to keep on growing her business to the next level.
Here she is now.
MICHELLE: I’m Michelle Lucherini, an outsourced operations director, and I work with B2B service-based business owners. So that could be coaches, consultants, or membership site owners. And I take their shed load of ideas and inspiration, turn it into an actionable plan, and help them stay focused until their vision becomes a reality and their work life becomes a whole lot more enjoyable.
What Makes Michelle an Expert in Operations
LAURA: Michelle, what makes you an expert in your chosen field?
MICHELLE: I have:
- A degree in Business Administration,
- I also have over 15 years of experience in commercially focused roles.
- I worked in the corporate world as the right-hand woman to a business that turned over 25 million pounds a year.
- I have supported multiple fast-growing online business owners over the past seven years since I started my own business.
In both cases, I’ve gained extensive experience in:
- Managing large-scale projects,
- Operationalizing strategies and visions,
- Ensuring productivity, efficiency, and most importantly, profitability, and of course,
- finding solutions to pressing problems.
All my clients are visionaries. And what that means is they need me as their pragmatist BFF, as I like to say. I hold them accountable at every step of the way. I ask the hard questions; I say no to something if it’s not going to be right for the business. And I even come out with my trusty wooden spoon if you need a bit of a smack.
I’m all about “no-nonsense talk” and my clients love that because sometimes, let’s face it, people on their team tend to pander to their every whim, but for me, it’s about staying focused and clear on what’s going to matter to help you achieve your vision.
Michelle’s Feelings BEFORE Beginning the Program
LAURA: Why did you choose to work with me on honing your branding strategy and what did you think your branding challenges were before we began?
MICHELLE: The reason I chose to work with Laura in helping me with my branding strategy is that luckily for me, I’ve known her for quite some time now, but I took a risk several years ago and said, “Let’s do a brand photo shoot.” And this was for my first website at the time. It was amazing. It was so out of the box and, I don’t know, just really captured the essence of me and I got so many great compliments on what we did.
I then went and got a new website, and I asked Laura to do another branded photo shoot and those, again, were outstanding. So, I just knew that she could take the visuals from how the website designer and the logo designer saw what we were doing and translate that into how I should show up personally.
Michelle’s Pre-Program Brand Assets
When I first started working with Laura, as I mentioned there:
- I had just gotten a new website,
- We had done the branded photos.
- The website looked the business, it was fabulous!
But I was still questioning,
“How do I speak to my ideal client?”
“Am I even really super clear on who my ideal client is?”
And it was kind of missing that layer. It looked visually stunning. The words were good on the page, or they appeared to be good on the page, but, was it attracting the right people and was I conveying what I did, who I served, the transformation I provided?
That was not just on the website, but when I show up online on social when I’m talking to people at networking events, just across the board, there was that missing piece of translating the beautiful visual aspect of it into that meatier layer of what my, you know, personal brand was all about.
Yup, Diary Cams!
LAURA: You may have seen before here on the show that I am a huge fan of creating behind-the-scenes content. I got Michelle to agree to record a series of diary cams so we could see how she found my program first-hand.
Let’s flashback in time to when Michelle began the program (clicks fingers).
MICHELLE: In the five years of business, I’ve never really sat down and looked at what my brand is, what it means, and how I translate that into my marketing. So I’m really looking forward to working on this with Laura and all the various aspects of the brand that that’s going to involve. And the ultimate end goal is that when I’m creating content, whether that be for, you know, fortnightly emails, blog content, video content, whatever that might be, it’s truly on brand and it sets me apart in the marketplace. I’m right at the beginning of this program and I have a bit of a mix of emotions. I would say I’m really excited. I know this is something I need to do for my business, but I’m also worried, nervous maybe is the right word, because I know that Laura’s here to support me, but it is going to be a lot of hard work.
Out of the Comfort Zone
MICHELLE: And for me, this doesn’t sit in my comfort zone. And so, I know Laura’s going to ask me questions and make me think about things that are going to stretch my capabilities. So that does make me a little bit nervous, stroke worried.
I’ve just looked through the scope that Laura has set out for the program, and like I say, I think I’ve just said it there, I’m excited. It looks all-encompassing. It looks like we’re going to evaluate and discover things that I never would’ve thought of as part of my brand.
I’m excited to see how that really develops for me rather than doing everything surface-level as I have done thus far. This deep dive I think is going to make a huge difference. The first part of the program is to fill in a quite lengthy discovery workbook that Laura sent me. I’m about to go do that now, and I’m really excited about that. That suits my personality to a tee. I love filling in forms.
I know in my head a lot about my business, so I don’t think this is going to be a hard task, although I haven’t looked through all the questions yet. And knowing Laura, there’ll be some curve balls in there where she’ll really make me think and question aspects of my business. But I’m really looking forward to this first part and I can’t wait to see what this brings up in my first session with Laura in a few weeks’ time.
LAURA: One of the stages after this was exploring even deeper, and Michelle decided she wanted to upgrade this module of the Program to have me, and my team take care of interviewing a sample of her different business stakeholders. to get a more objective read on how her brand was performing and being perceived.
Here’s how she felt about this…
MICHELLE: Hi. It’s Michelle here again. Here is my update on the latest from the program. Since my last check-in, we have gotten right into the work. This has made me feel very excited and super confident. I absolutely loved that Laura and her team have taken care of interviewing the sample of brand stakeholders we identified together. Not only was this a weight off my schedule, but it also made me feel that it was done properly and professionally. Laura has got me thinking differently about researching indirect and direct competitors. I’ll be honest, this makes me feel really intrigued. I’m curious to learn more about my competition and I feel Laura’s way of doing this is going to be spot on. See you in the diary cam next time.
Revisit Michelle’s Last Photoshoot
As she mentioned, Michelle chose to shoot some Personal Branding Photography with me. If you’d like to see how this went down, replay the episode below:
LAURA: One of the modules we get into on the program is achieving more of a precise understanding of how a brand compares out in the market against the competition. It’s this part that really helped Michelle to gain more confidence, particularly in positioning herself within her market.
Here she is again…
MICHELLE: I’m all done now with the competition part of the program, and I have to say that initially, I felt total imposter syndrome, but after doing the deep dive analysis portion, I feel way more confident about the skills and experience that I bring for my clients and for my audience in comparison to others out there.
Prior to taking Laura’s lead on this, I have to say that I felt ambivalent about my competition.
I’ve always followed the belief that since I’m a personal brand, I always need to follow what feels right for me rather than use my competition as any kind of yardstick.
Competitive Awareness INTO Positioning
Particularly, I felt quite challenged I guess with the brand positioning section of this exercise. We had to map out my brand against competition and it kind of was on different axes in a graph.
It felt kind of awkward because it’s not how my brain processes information. So I pushed back on Laura and bless her. She totally had to deal with my temper tantrum on that one, but we made it in the end.
Now I have this rich, competitive information at my fingertips. Laura and I have been figuring out what this means for my position in the marketplace. I can see how this was a super useful exercise and 100% how this information is going to start to inform and shape my brand.
LAURA: 6 months after having completed this program what do you think the results look like in your business with hindsight?
MICHELLE: Well now I think I have the clarity and the confidence to speak about what I do and who I best serve. I’m also laser, laser-focused when it comes to my online presence in terms of where I show up and also what messages I need to convey.
This means I’m way more visible in the right way online.
It’s been a no-brainer for me to invest and delegate the creation of my regular email newsletter and social media to make sure that I’m showing up more consistently with that laser focus.
Michelle’s branding results
LAURA: Michelle was able to discover and formalise the bits she knew were missing in her brand. With this uncovered information and logical strategic layer applied, she now feels more confident in implementing a more exacting creative direction for her brand with the focus she is known for providing to her clients.
What Michelle Said
LAURA: Michelle, why would you recommend this program to other people in the same situation as you?
MICHELLE: I know that Laura is an expert when it comes to branding and I’m not a creative person at all. It doesn’t sit in my comfort zone or my zone of genius. So I knew that she would push me outside of my comfort zone and really force me to answer the tough questions as part of this program to nail my creative direction and brand.
Support & Accountability
I really, really loved and appreciated the Slack support and the coaching calls because I was able to quickly overcome any hurdles, and blockages, and get any questions answered that I had as I was completing each of the modules as I went through the program.
It meant that I could quickly get the answers I needed and, you know, get each module completed.
Tangible Creative Direction
And finally, as I mentioned, I’ve invested and delegated my email in social media since completing the program and the suppliers have told me that they love the brand guidelines document as it gives them such a specific creative direction to work from.
Connect With Michelle
LAURA: And how can people find out more about you?
MICHELLE: Well, thanks so much for asking. The best place to go is to my website to read a blog all about my scaling success ecosystem because what this gives you are really quick tips, tools, and resources that you can use to help you scale with sanity and focus. So please head to michellelucherini.com/scaling-success-ecosystem.
LAURA: And where is the best place on social media for people to connect with you, Michelle?
MICHELLE: The best place to get to know about me is to connect on LinkedIn.
Reflecting On Michelle’s COO Branding Case Study
Michelle is now already pushing forward with implementing the outcomes of the program. It was a eureka moment we had after hitting that initial phase of resistance when it came to diving deeper into her customer avatar and how this could connect to evolving her brand personality.
Michelle is now in a really strong position to work on maximising her authority and delegating the creative part of doing business with confidence whilst also protecting her time.
Timestamps For This Episode Of #MwahTV