Your brand is a critical part of your digital life. In this world, passion for what you do forms the basis for a strong brand identity. Branding and passion go hand-in-hand. Our recent interview with Laurel Carpenter provided a unique writer’s vantage point into the ways of succeeding online.

Passion Defines Brand Identity, Content Strategy, and Message Distribution for Small Businesses

In today’s digital world, having a strong online presence is crucial for the success of any business, particularly for small businesses and solopreneurs. However, creating an effective online marketing strategy can be a daunting task, especially for those who are not familiar with the latest marketing trends and tools. And you have to have a story. 

Brand Identity as a Story

He was a journalist for the New York Times and other publications. Market convulsions in the print publication business resulted in several layoffs.

She was a nonprofit executive with a social service background, but she had not felt any appreciable job satisfaction for a long time.

They met dancing.


“Charles’s superpower from his journalism experience is witty writing,” Laurel Carpenter told Publio CEO Keith Reynolds in this episode of the Publio Podcast. “My superpower is interviewing people, a result of my social service background.”

Charles Herold and Laurel combined forces and co-founded Pearl Consulting in New York City. The copywriting agency helps small businesses and solopreneurs find the gem in their stories. 

Authenticity and Brand Identity

“We specialize in helping people find an authentic voice that resonates with their audiences,” Laurel explained. “We compliment each other. Charles is an introvert who loves to write. I like talking to other people, so it all works out.” Their partnership highlights the importance of taking risks and following your passion. 

Together, she and Charles have developed a rich online presence by creating and publishing content, which she discusses with Keith Reynolds on the Publio Podcast.

“When we came into our business five years ago, we got certified as SEO copywriters. That’s a big thing because you need to be found in search,” Laurel said. “So having the right content and distributing it correctly are really important.”

You can check it out from Google. They have a terrific presence with lots of resources for potential clients. On LinkedIn, too.

Create Your Online Brand Identity with Technology and Common Sense

Today, brand recognition requires an understanding of technology as well as communication skills to promote a business. But it is important to use the technology as a tool of the trade, not see it as the end goal. 

Laurel noted the rise of generative AI copywriting tools like ChatGPT and Jasper AI, which allow people to create their own content. However, she points out that these tools do not replace good writing and editing from a skilled human, nor as a way to cement personal connections with an audience.

“AI-generated content can be quite generic,” Laurel explained. “But it gives you a base to work from.”

The genie is out of the bottle.

“We went from pen and paper to the typewriter, to the word processor, and now the computer to communicate,” Keith noted. “And now artificial intelligence promises to write our content, or at least, help us organize our ideas.”

Writers and marketers must stay on technology’s leading edge, even as they improve their own skills and rely on their experience.

“If you don’t understand the technology,” Keith added, “and you don’t know the difference between good writing and bad writing, you’ll never be able to use the AI tools effectively.”

Brand Identity and Content Strategy Amplify Your Online Presence

Keith stressed the need to find the North Star idea that connects with your audience, and informs how you distribute your content at the places where your audience is most likely to be. Publio’s seven-step process walks you through the entire marketing process that builds your content strategy, discovers what your audience cares about, where they hang out, and how you can engage them.

Laurel also introduced her brand archetype quiz that helps people discover their brand persona. The results are analyzed in three virtual sessions, where they focus on the person’s values, ideal clients, and nightmare clients.  “People often get stuck on what differentiates them from competitors because they sometimes haven’t fleshed that out as well,” Laurel said.

“This can be a missed opportunity,” she explained, “because the differentiator determines how you craft your marketing messages. We try to help people find what their differentiators are, not just from their perspective, but also from their competitors’ perspective.”

An effective online marketing strategy is central to small businesses and solopreneurs. You must also stay on the leading edge of marketing trends and understand the changes in the marketing world in order to effectively connect with your target audience. 

Brand identity is a delicate dance, and it can be a little like finding your true partner on a crowded dance floor. Paired well, it will help you get the journey off on the right foot. 

Publio: A Fractional CCMO for Your Company

Are you a CEO seeking to grow your business? As a Fractional CCMO (Chief Content Marketing Officer), Publio specializes in helping clients differentiate their offerings and create content that stands apart from their competitors.

Curious to learn how Publio can help your business? Schedule a free consultation with us today.

Listen to the Publio Podcast

Join conversations with executives, agencies and thought leaders on marketing strategies that generate ROI. We discuss innovation, marketing, business, events, books, successful must-see strategies, and anything that is positive and refreshing. Find us on Spotify, and follow your North Star.

If you are responsible for your company’s marketing and sales success, pull up a chair, grab some coffee, tune in, and connect with YOUR customer audience.