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Would you ever step away from Instagram for your business?

Would you ever step away from Instagram/Facebook for your business?

I'm so interested to see that LUSH UK have announced they are ‘bidding farewell to some of their social channels’. This is a bold step for any company to take (one I’m sure we all consider from time to time!).

For Lush, a global company with hundreds of physical stores, a well known and loved brand (and importantly, one that was successful well before the social media age), this action will have different implications for their business than it would for solo-preneurs, less established, or digital brands.

Lush have always been advocates ‘against animal cruelty’, and have built their success, brand and community around strong ethical values (and the delightful/sometimes overpowering bath-bomb-waft that draws you in from down the street).

To see them step away from their huge social channels in the UK and use a hashtag instead, is a move that on the one hand seems counterintuitive (less people will find out about their products, positive ethical influence, education and inspiration), but at the same time feels quite fitting as leaders in the industry of ethical cosmetics and general self-care. (Because we all know how questionable and damaging the social media world can be for us when it comes to the lack of genuine human connection, comparisonitis, rampant consumerism, polarisation of views etc etc).

Lush’s move has the essence of ‘setting an example’ to other brands and to their customers; to move away from reliance on a brand, on social media, on paying to reach your followers and the tiresome struggle with algorithms, and to step back out into the physical world, as people running a company and their shops.

I know they won’t have any issues with their customers continuing to promote their products through their own personal social channels, so it’s not like Lush are going to disappear from the internet (and they will keep the local Lush store accounts), but to take away their UK IG ‘home’ feels like a step backwards when it comes to having a complete online presence and a space for your customers to engage and interact.

Yes, you can go into the physical stores, visit the online shop, the local IG accounts, but there won’t be a main hub for UK customers. I mean, just to be clear, I’m not personally worried about this as occasional customer who doesn't engage with their social anyway. I’m interested in this as a business and marketing decision and what we are seeing here. Perhaps this move is the brands genuine expression of integrity, and is not about reducing costs or keeping up with the demands that having a huge online platform presents.

My thoughts are… by taking away your online platform you also take away the community you created by establishing it in the first place. You take away the convenience that social provides for people to access your products and your brand story. Technology in general is only advancing and gaining deeper roots in our minds and cultures. By removing yourself from an online platform, you don’t solve the problems that exist within it or because of it.

If you really want to change the way people (your customers specifically) use social media to be healthier and more personal as a brand, then keep being honest, keep using it consciously and with kindness, allow space for real conversation and community, set up more in-person events for your customers/clients etc. If you don’t want to pay to appear in newsfeeds, don’t pay, and find other ways to genuinely connect and share. By simply disappearing, you don’t make the issues go away.

I am posting about this because I find it an interesting and thought provoking decision for a business of this kind to make and am curious about it, and what we can learn from it. I totally feel that the decisions any company makes are theirs to make, and no one can say what is right for another, I respect Lush’s decision.

Here’s their full post on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bv_F76GFOZw/

What do you think about this move? Would you ever step away from your IG? Have you done it? What difference did it make?

Listen in: Authentic branding on the NursePreneur Podcast with me!

Hey hey! I hope you're having a lovely week so far. I'm just back from a few days visiting some of my family in west Wales which was super lovely :) I don't have ANY phone pics to show for the long weekend - it's so unusual for me, but I think it's good for me to leave my phone in my bag sometimes and let go of capturing everything, all the time ya know!

Today I'm sharing a fab podcast episode with you I was thrilled to do with one of my dear clients, Catie Harris.

Catie and I worked together on her personal branding photography about three years ago in Philadelphia (see the blog post here) - it was such a wonderful time we had together and I've so enjoyed following her journey since!

I was excited to be interviewed for her show aimed at NursePreneurs and anyone starting their own business - it's filled with interesting biz stories, tips, inspo and practical tools to help her listeners recognise and hone their skills, market their services and live a life and business in harmony with their true values. I have personally found the episodes fascinating and useful and highly recommend listening! Catie asked amazing questions to bring my learning's and experiences through to help her audience.

In our 25 minute conversation we covered some of my personal and business journey, plus...

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  • How to craft an authentic personal brand that resonates with your ideal clients

  • Ways to use photography, and the hidden benefits of having a photo shoot

  • Catie's experience of starting her business, developing a personal brand, and reflections on her shoot with me

  • Ways I help my clients to get confident and comfortable in front of the camera

  • Tips on finding the right photographer for your brand

  • The power of video in your business

  • The transformative process of a personal branding shoot, the revelations and up-levels that can come from it

Click here to listen!


I hope you enjoy the interview and find it useful, it was so lovely to have this conversation. Would love to know what you think!

Thank you so much for the opportunity to share with you and your audience, Catie.

If you have a podcast and feel your listeners would benefit from hearing from me, or know someone who does, I'd be delighted to do this with you. Just reply to this message and we can take it from there!

P.S. I still have one space available for a shoot THIS MONTH (April), so if you've been wondering about a Spring brand session, message me now and we can speak to plan your best ever shoot and get you all set up!

Have a beautiful rest of your day! Becky xx

An invitation to getting better photos for your business! (Sign up)

The photography you use across your social media and on your website is the first introduction your potential clients and followers will have with you when they initially connect. That first impression says sooo much about you and really counts when it comes to the way your business and offerings are perceived!

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It’s like the poster for the movie, the cover of the book… your photos are supposed to tell your audience about you and give a glimpse of what working together could be like.

While in your videos and written content you have the opportunity to go deeper in words or in movement, your photos are that first piece that grabs their attention.

(You still flick through to look at all the photos before you read a book or article too, don’t you!?)

This means you have the power to put a representation of yourself that is true, feels good, and connects with your peeps!

Join the email series - An invitation…

There are loads of factors that contribute to the narrative of your branding photos, and with my seven years of experience as a branding photographer, I'm sharing a series of emails full of tips and resources on important topics such as...

  • Why your energy is the most important thing about your brand photography

  • How to 'pose', and what your body language is communicating

  • How to choose outfits, colours and accessories based on your unique business

  • How to find the perfect locations, choose props, makeup and more.

In this series I’ll be going through the factors that make for YOUR best photos, breaking them down and clarifying what’s important to think about and what’s really, really not, as you continue along this journey of business and truth.

Sign up below to get the emails - starting next week! It’s an honour to share with you.

This series is really for anyone who’s using photos in their website or social media and uses online platforms to attract clients, whether using professional photography or the power of the selfie.

5 Reasons I've Booked My Own Photoshoot for 2018

Helloooo! I hope you had a great first month of 2018. Since my last update some exciting things have been going on that I wanted to share with you!

The launch meeting of The Space Brighton!

The launch meeting of The Space Brighton!

  1. I’m now coaching + mentoring creative entrepreneurs - something I've wanted to do for a long time - I was waiting for the 'right time' to offer this and after a flurry of inquiries, I decided to go for it! I'm LOVING supporting others on their journey and have received some amazing feedback from my new clients as they get clear on their next steps. If you're interested in coaching with me, send me a message and let's speak!
  2. Fab personal branding shoots are coming up in the UK and beyond (including Italy in February with amazing Grace Kelly!) woohoo!
  3. I launched an in-person monthly membership group for creatives in Brighton with my dear friend JudeThe Space! It was absolutely beautiful for us to bring people together, deliver meditations, trainings on mindset, meaningful conversations about the creative & business life, and set intentions for the month ahead. Excited for our next meeting on 15th Feb! There are a couple of spaces if you'd like to join us. (Yay come to Brighton!). I'm feeling so grateful for all of these exciting things to be unfolding.

Another thing I'm excited about is my own upcoming photo shoot!

Below I'm sharing my top five reasons that booking a photoshoot is transformational not only for your branding and marketing, but for your mindset, your vision and confidence. I hope you find these points useful and thought provoking! Let me know what you think...

I have one space left for a photo shoot in February and three places in March, so if you're taking your business to the next level in 2018 and need vibrant new photographs to help get your message out there, email me here :)

With love as always,

Becky xx


5 Reasons I've Booked My Own Photoshoot for 2018

Photography has a magical way of evoking emotion, creating connection and bringing us together... you know that from looking at the portraits in galleries, or from the way photos have drawn you to buy from people online (or turned you away!).

I use photography all across my website as a way to infuse it with my personality, on social media, and in my emails to my list, it works really well. I found it interesting that my 'top nine' from 2017 (the most 'liked' images) included 4/9 photos of me... It goes to show how much people engage with the PERSON behind the business and the message. How are you showing up in yours?

When you offer a service that is personal, it's important that your clients and followers can connect with you from the start. Updating my shots is something I’ve been thinking about for a while, as a lot has shifted since my last shoot: I moved cities, there were big changes in my business and personal life, and, like, my hair has grown loads!

Having a new photoshoot is of course a considerable investment, and sometimes sending money into our businesses can feel scary, especially when there are so many different ways that we could invest it for different types of returns. How do you know whether your photo shoot is really going to pay off? Below are my top five reasons that I believe in the power and investment in personal branding photography, and what I benefit from, every time I do a shoot. I had no idea how transformational it really was until I did it!

1. I get soooo much clarity on my personal brand, my message, my offerings and my next steps. To make sure we co-create photos that will resonate with my business and to get the most out of the shoot, I take myself through the process that I coach my clients through; a series of deep and thoughtful questions. It takes me to the core of my business as I evaluate my brand, values, ideal clients, direction, plans for my marketing and more. This is a space I looove to hold for my clients, and is a transformational part of the process before the shoot day is even here. It's been amazing to do this for myself.

2. I feel renewed energy in my biz, commitment to my mission and my peeps When we take a scary exciting leap in the direction of our GROWTH, we show ourselves that we believe in ourselves and feel fired up about our power to make a bigger positive impact in the world. (Sometimes making a sizeable investment in yourself that challenges you to SEE and honour yourself will do that!).

3. I understand how my clients feel, create better content and a better photoshoot experience. Knowing what having a shoot is like from my clients perspective helps me to give the best advice, support and content to my clients and followers from my personal experience. It also demonstrates my genuine care and helps to create a deeper personal connection. What difference has investing in the type of work that you offer made to you and your clients experience?

4. I feel way more confident to share online! When the photographs I'm using feel like me, I am more likely to show up, I feel more at ease and happy about how I come across. When we're using shots that are really out of date or out of alignment, it feels draining to share them. Sometimes this actually stops us from showing up at all which means the world doesn't get to hear the message you are here to share, and obviously this is very damaging for your business.

5. I quickly create more engagement with my clients and followers. Because... A) I have brand new valuable content to share (see point 3!)
B) I share more because I have new photos and it's fun to update everything!
C) Google ranks your website higher in search results the more recently updated it was with visual content - therefore updating your website with new images will help boost its ranking.
D) I have maintained a personal relationship with my clients who genuinely care and are interested in how I've evolved since my last photos, and are excited to see the new shots!

I'm going back to this blog post below as I prepare for my shoot: Five powerful questions to ask yourself before your next shoot

If updating your photographs is something you know you want to do to start this year, email me by replying to this message.

Let's catch up and explore the kinds of photographs that will best serve you in sharing your message, connecting with your ideal clients, and making the world a better place.

I've got one space left for a February session three spaces available for March... (omg yay Springtime!!

Speak soon and big hugs,

Becky xx

You're invited: The Space Brighton

I'm sooo excited to announce the launch of The Space Brighton with you today, a project that my dear friend Jude and I were inspired to create! So, introducing...

For Creatives and Creative Entrepreneurs

A monthly space to:

Get Connected. Be yourself. Meet fellow creatives. Bring focus. Find clarity. Be supported. Receive coaching. Hold intentions. Share your challenges. Set goals. Be held accountable. Grow your business. Get out of your office!

When: Thursday 18th January 2018 10am-12:30pm
When: ONCA Gallery meeting room, Brighton
Price: £7


The Space is a new approach to growing your creative business, progressing your career and making connections in a way that feels true to you. It’s not about networking in the traditional sense – putting your game face on every week, pitching your pitch and pretending you’ve got this whole creative business/career thing NAILED!

It’s about showing up wherever you’re at, taking time for yourself to reconnect, feel energised about your next steps and get to know likeminded creatives. It’s a space for you to receive the support and coaching you need to keep putting one foot in front of the other, and growing this business or career you feel so passionately about… Because let’s face it, sometimes it can be bloody tough!

We meet once a month from 10 -12.30pm and over the course of our morning we allow whatever needs to be in The Space to unfold without pressure, while still maintaining a schedule and agenda that allows for discovery, learning, support, one to one coaching, group exercises, intention and purpose. We want you to leave The Space every month feeling invigorated, inspired and excited about the things you’re going to focus on and the intentions you’re setting for the following four weeks. This means that sometimes, it might be about letting the crap out so you can let the good stuff in! Ultimately, our aim as a group is to create a space where we feel safe to share, get support on our individual challenges, and ultimately grow in our personal and professional lives.

Read more and book your place here!


The ever so lovely Jude!

The ever so lovely Jude!

So how did this come about? A little while ago, my friend Jude and I were catching up over tea at the lovely Trading Post Cafe in Brighton. It had been a few months since we'd last met, we reflected on our years so far, we shared about our successes and the challenges we'd been facing in our lives and businesses, shared advice and brainstormed ideas! I LOVE our conversations!

Sometimes it's hard to get perspective on whatever you're facing, and it is so so helpful to talk it through with a friend who may be able to inspire a new idea or show you what may be hiding in your blind spots. It was great...

We reflected on how important coming together like this is for self employed people and creatives, especially for those of us who are often working alone. Suddenly at the same moment, we had the idea to create an opportunity to actually DO THAT, with and for a wider community here in Brighton!

Whether things are flowing for you, or you're feeling totally stuck, taking time to check in with yourself and see where you're at, meet likeminded people, clarify your goals, talk about what's going on for you is so important.

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I really believe in the power and value of community, friendship and self-connection and am really looking forward to co-creating this special space.

I would LOVE to see you there if this calls to you. And, if you know someone who would benefit from being a part of this exciting new group, please pass on this link! Thank you.

Big hug! Becky xx

(Got questions? Email me at becky@beckyrui.com.)

 

A special invitation, for the Luminaries.

Hey lovely! Today I have a special letter (an invitation, really) for you. From the heart of one of my favourite humans. Filmmaker and Creative Strategist, Vanessa Jane.

Vanessa and I met in person in Australia when I visited last year, and omg - what a special and inspirational lady she is! We had the most beautiful time exploring Bondi together, chatting for hours in the sunshine about branding, spirituality, integrity and authenticity in life/business. As a creative branding film maker, we had a LOT to talk about!

Anyway, please do read on in the words of beautiful Vanessa... I think you're going to L.O.V.E. this.


If you are reading this, you must be one of the special ones. The ones who are a little crazy, a little brilliant, who might not fit in, who might not want to fit in. Maybe you shine a little brighterthan others around you, or you might be a little ahead of your time. You don’t just exist - you have a deeper reason for living the life and doing the work you do. Today I invite you to take it to another level, to truly embody your message and share your story through the power of film.

Steve Jobs called them the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, and the troublemakers. Joseph Campbell and Gail Laren refer to them as the Holy Fools. 

I call them Luminaries.

Gail says, Holy Fools are those who get their spark of madness on and take soul-inspired action that they know is theirs to take. They express what indigenous teachings call Original Medicine. That teaching tells us we all come to the earth with gifts and talents nowhere else duplicated. And that if we don't express those gifts, they are lost to the world for all time.

A Luminary is all that and they have a light that begs to be revealed to the world.

Sharing your talents with the world is important, whether you are a yoga teacher, a coach, a writer, speaker, designer, photographer… it matters not. It’s what you bring to what you do. A lifetime of experience and a heartfelt connection to your work. An infectious passion that infuses all you do and is contagious to all those who step into your world. A deeper story that links you to your work, perhaps even a soul stirring compulsion to do it. 

Watch my Brand Awareness Film here:  http://vanessajane.com/luminaries/

There is nothing quite like people who are like this, and and the most potent way to showcase them (you!) is through the power of film. These films are part bio, part inspirational beacon, part doco… part you. And, as we know, video and film are powerful ways to share information.

A brand awareness film is you revealed, a bite sized display that’s deep, gripping, captivating and magical. These films capture where you have been to where you are now - eliciting people’s genuine interest in learning about others.

Many people doing important work are not sure what their story is, what parts, if any, are relevant. We often discount our journey and we need someone  else to find the jewel - the essence of us - and find a way to acknowledge our wholeness.

Go into yourself. Find the reason that commands you to write (make, speak, create, share). See whether it has spread its roots into the very depths of your heart; Confess to yourself whether you would have to die if you were forbidden to write (make, speak, create, share) it!” - Rainer Maria Rilke (writer)

Your story is who you are. Your voice is your strength and your vulnerability. Your story is your power - so use it.

The world we live in right now is aching for truth, light and inspiration – you can and must provide this by telling your story and sharing your heart, your message, your gifts and your light.
So, I ask you: are you ready? Ready to make film magic with Vanessa?
We invite you to take the leap, make the move, share your story - in the coolest and most relevant way possible. Film!
Find out how, here.

Love always,

Becky and Vanessa