For businesses to be successful, standing out and building authentic connections with your audience is pivotal. One way to effectively connect with your audience is through the power of storytelling. In fact, storytelling has been found to be 22% more effective than facts alone.
We understand the power of storytelling, especially when it comes to sharing the passion and motivation behind your family business. The opportunity to integrate the founding narrative into a company’s brand story helps to foster a genuine connection with your audience, but it is often overlooked or undervalued.
At Element212, we aren’t just a branding company. We are a family business building a legacy for our children. We are a story woven with passion, dedication, and a vision to make a difference for the family businesses we serve and the people we employ.
Sharing our family business’s founding story allows us to reveal the values, aspirations, and experiences that have shaped our journey. It’s more than just a narrative; it’s a testament to our commitment, resilience, and the principles that guide and shape our business and culture. We take what we have learned throughout our own journey to help our clients forge connections with their customers so they can build on the past while seizing opportunities for the future.
The Early Years of Building a Family Business
I have a passion for building things. I thrive on the challenge of creating something new. In 2007 my family and I moved to a new state. The community we chose was struggling economically. With my creativity and passion for building, coupled with my desire to support the economic development of our community, I began the process of opening a small marketing firm.
In 2008, Element212 was officially “in business.” In our early years, the company included myself as the CEO, brand strategist, CFO, COO, and sales support. Anyone who has started a small family business knows the delicate practice of wearing too many hats to get the business off the ground.
My husband (at the time), Todd supported me in business development, sales, and all-around cheerleader, keeping me going when taking one step further seemed impossible. We also had one part-time designer to support the various branding projects.
Growing Into the Brand
In the start-up years of building a family business, your brand persona naturally reflects the personality of the founders. Element212 was no different. Our company was fun, energetic, fearless, and excited for the future. We were eager to fulfill our mission of serving local family businesses to help them grow. We were also eager to positively impact our community’s economic growth and development.
As we grew and hired more employees, we were forced to become more organized in our operations, processes, and business structure. We had to create systems for our services to support each team member in their role in the company. We had to create expectations for our customer care, communications, and quality control of our work.
Growth in the early years for a small family business is daunting. You are expected to have all the answers, while you are still learning yourself. You are filling roles in your company that you have no business being in. Let’s face it, most of us small business founders have set up and managed our business finances without one class in business economics. We have truly exemplified the saying “fake it till you make it.”
Remembering the Meaning and Impact of a Family Business
But throughout the growth and business changes, it was important to Todd and I to always keep our company culture fun, energetic, fearless, and excited for the future. To stay eager to fulfill our mission of serving local family businesses to help them grow. To remember that our work positively impacts community growth and supports the quality of life for the employees of the businesses we serve. This gives our work meaning and reminds us that our impact is bigger than just creating successful marketing campaigns.
For family business owners, throughout all the chaos of the start-up years, the countless failures, and the milestone successes, the founding principles your company was built on, likely stand true today and are a large piece of why your company made it through those early years.
Those founding principles coupled with the lessons learned through your failures and successes are what makes your company who it is today. It is the essence of your brand, your culture, and the legacy you are building.
Family Business is Our Passion
For Element212, our family business has weathered many storms and has experienced many highs. Throughout the years in business, we have been able to navigate the ups and downs because we stayed grounded in our founding principles and passion for this business we created.
Our passion to help family businesses uncover strategic opportunities to engage their audience in meaningful ways to grow their loyal customers has become our company promise. And this promise is part of the legacy story of our brand.
What is your legacy story?