Get Real! How to Trust Being Your Authentic Self - Part 2

girl with hat and big glasses

This is the second part of a three-part called Get Real! How to Trust Being Your Authentic Self. In this post, I’ll give you two examples of companies who risked being themselves, cashed in big, and how you can do the same.   

The first example is a company is called Rickshaw Bagworks, a San Francisco maker of high-quality, handcrafted messenger bags, totes and backpacks. Their site is personable, has a stylish and original design, but what makes me just plain feel good about this company are the photos and the way they talk about themselves and their products. It’s real, it’s friendly, and it’s fun. Here’s an excerpt from their About page:

“Rickshaw is a new San Francisco-based bag company. Inspired by the creative energy of our city, urban cycling and an intense desire to make great products, we started Rickshaw to satisfy our own personal passion for bags. We know how people love their bags. We think it’s cool–if not kind of weird–the way people grow attached to their favorite bag as though it were a pet or loved–one.”

I’ve bought a backpack, tote and sleeves for my MacBook Air and iPad and I love every last stitch in these great bags. The way Rickshaw presents themselves online is like running into an old friend who smiles and says, “Hey, let me buy you a cup of coffee and let’s catch up.”

The second example is the Crawford Group, a multimedia firm based right here in Orlando. I happen to know and have worked with Chad Crawford and his team, and they are a group of very talented people who are a total hoot to work with. 

Even though they have a demo reel running on their homepage—which would impress even the most critical—it’s the copy and photos that tell the story of a very creative and lively team who love to hit home runs for their clients. If I didn’t know them, I’d feel like I did after taking a turn on their site.

By the way, be sure to check out How to Do Florida show that Chad directs and hosts.

These businesses do three critical things on their sites to introduce themselves and soften prospective customers:

  1. They show who they really are. They don’t use stock photos or overdone design. They have candid, happy photos that capture their personality with vivid dimension.
  2. They talk about themselves honestly and with humility. They don’t have corporate speak or generalizations about their products and services. They use a conversational, yet professional, style and tone.
  3. They express their appreciation and love for what they do and who they do it for. It’s clear in both examples that they are committed to service and quality, and respect why they do what they do without bragging about how great they are.

Now it’s your turn. Think of at least one funny or captivating story about each of the prompts you wrote about in the first part of this Get Real series. Write that story from your heart with as much detail as possible, in your voice, as if you’re telling a friend.

Sir Richard Branson (c) wikipedia

Sir Richard Branson (c) wikipedia

You may find this challenging when you work on the future prompts, but this is where you can be creative. For example, you can write a “what if” story about meeting someone famous like Richard Branson and how that would go down. Have fun and be yourself.

When you’re done, go back over your stories and see which of them has the most honesty, and maybe gives you truth-chills. THAT’S the story that will resonate with others. As a bonus, collect any photos from those times as well. You may want to use them in your site.

In the last part of this series, we’ll take the writing you’ve done and convert it into compelling stories you can use to present your authentic self and tell your story with real confidence.

Terry Pappy

Orlando, FL 32814