“Yes! Hope may with my strong desire keep pace,
And I be undeluded, unbetrayed:
For if of our affections none find grace
In sight of Heaven, then wherefore hath God made
The world which we inhabit? Better plea
Love cannot have, than that in loving thee
Glory to that eternal peace is paid,
Who such divinity to thee imparts
As hallows and makes pure all gentle hearts.
His hope is treacherous only whose love dies
With beauty, which is varying every hour;
But, in chaste hearts uninfluenced by the power
Of outward change, there blooms a deathless flower,
That breathes on earth the air of paradise.”
Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564)
History has taught us that great works of art took incredible amounts of time and manpower to create. Artists exerted their efforts convincing others that they were not just romantics and dreamers with crazy ideas.
Art also takes motivation and inspiration.
Building a business that will be loved and admired by many also takes time, effort and strength. We must accept and and live by our standards and ideas while making the non-believers, believe.
It’s a process that builds upon smaller pieces and steps to help us craft a general view. Each of these stages will help us get a better picture of what our brand can be which keeps us inspired. Think of Leonardo, who worked on the Sixteenth Chapel alone with his thoughts and helpers, to achieve a dream that few believed in.
In this case, you are Leonardo and your brand is a masterpiece that will change lives!
When I see entrepreneurs treat their brands and businesses anxiously with an “ASAP mindset,” I can’t help but wonder how they expect their audience to care about them when they haven’t had a chance to get to know themselves.
Visionaries, on the other hand, believe so strongly in their idea that they take the time to get to know their audience so that they can serve them best. This doesn’t mean that you need to take decades to build something wonderful (let’s leave that to the masters of art!). You just need to take the time that your vision needs to build up, test, analyze and revisit what worked, how you can make it better and put it back into the world.
You’re building a masterpiece with a lean process that will let you create, test and iterate offerings while building brand awareness and positioning yourself in front of the right audience.
It’s easy to to create something that is “good enough for now”, but think of what that action says to the rest of the world. Your business decisions affect (for better or worse) the image people have about your brand and your investment in it. It’s not easy to ask people to pay for your premium offerings if you’re not treating yourself as a premium brand.
I like to see brand building as an art form (tweet this!). We want our business to be something consumers will admire, be inspired by and even line up to experience… Which is what I’m doing right now, waiting in line to see the work of Brunelleschi in Florence with butterflies in my stomach and a smile on my face. 🙂