Why I Will Never Judge A Book By The Cover Again

The CEO of POSH PR®, The Caroline Doll, shares a piece of her heart and what she learned from the Creative @ Heart Conference in Raleigh, NC.

I am about to get very real and share with you something that has been on my heart....

The POSH PR® and The Caroline Doll brands have 100% been built on love. Which is why I am particularly confused by what I've been experiencing lately...

I've been discovering a trend that I was finally able to put into words this past week at the Creative @ Heart Conference.  A creative attendee came up to me and said, "I have been following you for years but have been so afraid to come up to you and introduce myself, but I am so glad I did!" While talking with another attendee the following day I heard, "Oh, wow! You are so nice! I was not expecting you to be so sincere and helpful!" After teaching a breakout session another stated, "You changed my life. I never thought that someone like me would ever be able to connect with a pink brand like yours."

Y'all, I promise. I just LOOK high maintenance! 

WOW. It wasn't until the car ride home with Hope (my closest friend in the industry and incredibly talented photographer) that I realized something: I am NOT doing a great job actually connecting with my followers and showing them the real me. I am so focused on staying true to my brand (which is my real life!) but I am losing sight of showing you that I am a real human. I am not perfect and I make mistakes. Lots of them, actually.

And then it hit me... Just because I have been sharing my brand's heart through my digital marketing campaigns doesn't mean I am actually showing you who the real me is.

To bring this epiphany full circle, I was chatting with my friend Katelyn at the conference (who owns + runs a serious time photography business!) and we were catching up and chatting about my wedding in June. I mentioned that every time I post a photo of Constantine (my new husband!) on Instagram, I get SO MUCH more engagement from my followers. Katelyn looked at me and said that she wasn't shocked at all by this. She said that people want to connect with @thecarolinedoll, but some may have a hard time connecting with luxury fashion brands or even PR.  However, they can ALL connect with a love story. 

MIND = BLOWN.  She is 100% right!

My promise to you moving forward? I am going to do a better job showing you the real me,  let my guard down at times and be intentional with my words.

With that being said, here's my first REAL TALK thought: I was just as nervous as all of the attendees stated they were of going to the Creative @ Heart Conference. It wasn't the conference that I was afraid of.  It wasn't leading my breakout sessions or connecting with the attendees. It was the part where I had to stay in a house with three of the other creative leaders. I was afraid of rejection. I was afraid of getting too close to them and being vulnerable. If I am being honest, I've been so busy running my business that I don't really have a close group of girlfriends. I had no idea what it would be like to stay in a house for the week with all of them...

Whew. Now that I have that out there. Let me tell you what really happened: It was the best experience I've had in years.  We laughed. We cried. We were real with each other and real with our struggles. And it meant the world to me. These girls have NO idea what they did for my soul this week and I am forever grateful for their friendship! (Megan, Tarah and Hope, I love you all to pieces!)

Moral of the story? Don't judge a book by the cover. I know I won't ever again!