An app called MindSnacks pushes French vocabulary words to me each day. (More about my favorite apps.) I was helping a friend better define the “inspirational” materials she was sending to her graphic designer in preparation for a brand makeover when the little notification came up on my phone: “C’est ca.” Translated, “That’s it exactly.”
“C’est ca” represents everything we want people to feel about our businesses — that we get them, that we get where they are, that we get where they’re trying to go.
We want them to feel as if yes, that’s it exactly. They’re in the right place.
Right now, choose three words that represent the way you want your customers to feel when they visit your website, when they work with you, and when they interact with your business.
I’m not talking about words like “fresh” or “modern” — I’m talking about the emotions you want people to experience.
From the beginning to the end of your time together, your clients are going to feel something. Why not focus everything your brand looks and feels like around those emotions?
Uplifted, empowered, inspired.
Joyful, grateful, playful.
Strong, graceful, powerful.
Beautiful, supported, nourished.
Connected, seen, understood.
Grounded, nurtured, inspired.
Serene, wise, trusted.
Energized, refreshed, knowledgable.
Fit, uplifted, lean.
Refined, represented, stimulated.
To find a word, just type a word you know you’d like to include into thesaurus.com and follow the rabbit trail. Play with words for a few minutes, and refuse to pressure yourself to find all three if they aren’t coming easily. One will do, when it’s the right one!
When my new website is unveiled in the coming weeks (snippet shown), I want you to feel alive, delighted, and worthy. Every single thing I write, visual I approve, or image I choose has to come back to those core words. When you arrive, I want you to say, “C’est ca.” She gets me. She knows where I am, she sees me, and she finds me more than worthy.
Without freaking out, running to hire a graphic designer, and otherwise blowing a wad of cash, what are some simple changes you can make to your brand to underscore these key words?
How can you make your visitors say “C’est ca?” I’m got some ideas.
To use your words in written form: use your three words in your bio. Tell people how you want them to feel in the information portion of your website. Take a customer survey asking your peeps how they already feel when they work with you if you can’t find the words. Strive to use images that reflect those three words for a solid month — let it be your editing filter. Ask clients or colleagues to guest post on your blog with an essay about those three words.
To use your words in visual form: Google color theory and see if the colors in your current palette are helping or hindering your efforts. A simple color tweak can make all the difference — it’s hard to sell “grounded and supported” with bright pink, for example. Check that any patterns or supporting materials you use are supporting your words. If you’re taking “calm” or “peaceful” as a talisman but feature bright bright patterns and distracting stripes — your message probably won’t land.
To use your words out and about: If you want your peeps to feel strong, how can you support that connection? Can you work with other businesses who emphasize strength for their clients? (This is a completely different way to come about seeing potential partners!) Does your website navigation and your marketing material speak to these words? If one of your key words is “graceful” but links are broken or your site is a bit janky, now’s the time to prioritize the fix.
Of course, you don’t have to make these changes overnight — simply being aware of the “c’est ca” effect can do wonders for building your brand in the coming months.
In the comments, share 1 or 2 or all of your “c’est ca” words so others can see! I can’t wait to hear what you come up with, and I hope this has helped to shift your perspective and make branding WAY less stressful!