If you’re new here, you might not know that for a year, this was Lucent Connections. Lucent Connections was something I was (and still am) proud of, but after just a year it wasn’t the right branding choice for me anymore.
When you work by and for yourself, authenticity is incredibly important. In the age of social media, people expect to feel a connection to the person or brand they’re buying from. I know this, obviously; in fact creating real connections is something I’ve always been passionate about. More than that, I know that it’s entirely possible for a brand to connect on that level. As in, a company brand with a name that’s not my own. I know it’s possible; I see it every day, on my Instagram feed and in my inbox. I sometimes feel so connected to a brand that it feels like we’re friends, so I know you can be a company and still feel connected to your audience.
The reason I first named my business Lucent Connections was as a way of legitimising myself. I felt insecure about backing myself and the things I could do, so I decided to remove myself from the equation altogether. I said it was because I wanted the room to expand one day and hire people to work for me. That’s not untrue but I think it’s something that’s a bit further in the future, and I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. I also created Lucent Connections very quickly in response to a rather precarious professional, personal and financial position. My work visa for the UK had been declined by the Powers That Be and I was moving back to Australia sad and in debt. Knowing that, I offered to continue working for my UK employer remotely, as a contractor and affiliated with their Australian office.
It was an amazing opportunity. I had a few months (based on the original contract) to see if I could make it work on my own. But I was scared and broke. I had no plan, no time to plan, and no confidence in my abilities. So Lucent Connections was thrown together during a very turbulent time in my life and I was so desperate to make it work, I said “yes” to everything. I tried to appeal to everyone and so I appealed to no one in particular.
Don’t get me wrong: Lucent Connections served me well. Mostly thanks to my former employer, I made enough money that I didn’t need to find another job (though of course my boyfriend had a hand in that as well). I had a good audience, I got enquiries and even signed a few clients. But after awhile, I stopped feeling connected to anything I was writing, saying or doing. I mean, I did at the beginning, sure. But as time went by, I lost sight of what I was doing. I kind of became lost in an echo chamber of businesses that looked professional and corporate and were always “on brand”. Before I knew it, I was mimicking them, putting forth a polished image of who I was. I really sanitised the things I was saying and doing, and I stopped sharing personal things and showing up because I felt like a fraud.
After a bit of a burnout, an almost complete disappearance from social media, and a few months of only working with and for my existing clients (nothing more and nothing less), I realised something. I didn’t feel comfortable marketing myself as a marketing consultant. I love building websites and I’m a decent communicator but marketing… well, maybe that’s not what I’m meant to do right now.
So something had to change. I’d already made the decision to redesign my website and change the aesthetic I had on my Instagram. I’d taken new photos, I’d come up with a new editing style and I had my website design ready to go, but something still didn’t feel right. I knew I hated my logo, but it was more than that. Lucent Connections was a name I’d chosen when I was starting a marketing consultancy business, and it very much has that vibe. In fact I’d since discovered there is a marketing consultancy firm in China with the same name - something that had never once come up in my previous research into the name!
It was one of those shower moments. Like literally, I was in the shower and I thought, “I don’t just hate my logo; I hate the name too.” I’d pigeon holed myself as a digital marketing business and that wasn’t what I wanted anymore. I knew I needed to bring myself back into my brand, otherwise I was never going to feel relaxed and connected to it in a real way. So, Lucent Connections gave birth to Laura F Creates. A more modern, more creative, more “me” brand. My main priority was to get rid of the hyper corporate vibe I’d adopted, and get back to being comfortable with sharing things that were real. Like this story.
And here we are. Laura F Creates is still a work in progress (and maybe it always will be), but I’m so much happier than I was 4 or 5 months ago as Lucent Connections. A few times I questioned if I’d regret making the change, if I was doing the right thing for my brand. But maybe more importantly, I was doing the right thing for me. And sometimes that’s the only reason you need to do anything.