“Authenticity” is a word that has been thrown around a lot these days. And sure, striving to be your most authentic self is wonderful, but what does it look like if you own your own business?

Some might suggest that in order to be taken seriously and perceived as a professional, keeping your social media clean and proper is the only way.

But I know someone who is challenging that, f-bombs and all.

Mabz, (aka Marie-Andrée Brisson if you want to get technical) is the hand lettering artist and calligrapher behind Chalked by Mabz.

If you’re familiar with Mabz on Instagram, you might recognize her for her floral #glassmurals, as the Ottawa representative for The Just Married Jacket project, for her brutally honest anecdotal tales of motherhood, and of course, for her liberal use of profanities in both her stories, her captions and her work.

So fair warning, if you’re easily offended by profanities or you’re around little ones, I suggest you skip out on this interview and jump right on over to the recap bellow!

If you’re keen on being a little (or a lot) more authentic on your social media accounts buuut you’re not quite sure how that might affect your business, Mabz has shared a pros and cons list based on her experiences!

PROS:

  • More engaged followers

When your followers feel like they have invested in you, they’ll want to see you succeed! They’ll want to cheer you on! They’ll want to send you a virtual high five!

Mabz believes that having dedicated followers is one of, if not THE biggest attribute she has to explain her success. Because of her authenticity online, her followers are getting to know HER and investing in HER…not just some faceless company!

  • Better suited clients

Finding your ideal client can be hard and it’s totally possible that you won’t always jive with certain potential clients. But when a client likes oooor does NOT like the way you go about representing yourself and your brand on social media, they will most likely choose to or NOT to contact you for jobs, sort of saving you the trouble of what could be awkward client relationships. Additionally, if a person feels like they can relate to you, they are more likely to hire you because of your work and/or because of your personality!!

  • No disconnect between online and offline

Have you ever followed someone on social media, but then met them in person and they are sooo not what you were expecting? Or maybe you’ve been following someone for a while and you’ve wondered how much of “them” is reeeally theeem and how much is put on for the ‘gram?

When you choose to share more of your personality, quirks, beliefs and YOURSELF on your social media, it means that the gap between your “online” and “offline” self is smaller. So when you meet someone for the first time in person, chances are they will be close-to if not exactly what you had expected.

  • Everything will feel more natural

If you’re a small business owner, you probably know how important it is to be consistent on your posts, blogs, email lists, stories…the list goes on. Taking away the feeling as though you need to filter your thoughts/comments is pretty freeing! Posting becomes less of a chore when you can write the way you ACTUALLY speak!

CONS:

  • People might not take you seriously

It’s a given, some people don’t want personality, they want a job done. It’s just the way it is. Just like some people might LOVE that you share videos of your cat or your #OOTD, others might not like the idea that you share aspects of your personal life on your professional profiles.

Your choice of language can play a huge part in this. For Mabz, swearing is just a part of her day to day verbiage. She is aware that some (and maybe even many) people could be offended by her use of language and see it as unprofessional.

  • You might lose/not gain certain followers

This is only a con if you choose to look at it that way…If you’re being yourself and you lose followers, than are you reaaally losing out? It is much better to have 10 dedicated followers who like and engage with your work

  • You’ll upset your aunts

…or my dad.

(Watch the interview to know what I’m referring to LOL)

  • You might not be considered for certain jobs and you might lose clients

This kind of goes hand in hand with some of the points above, but if a client doesn’t like you, chances are they won’t hire you.

BUT to turn that into a pro, this means you’ll have more time for your IDEAL clients.

During our interview we also chatted about collaborations!

Mabz has collaborated with many other businesses, brands and artists, myself included!! She actually reached out to me a few years back via email asking if I might be interested in collaborating sometime in the future…and the rest is history!

If you want to hear her go into better detail, be sure to watch the full interview, but here is an overview of what she has ACTUALLY done and continues to do when she’s interested in a potential collaboration!

TIPS FOR COLLABORATIONS:

  • Reach out!
  • Be true about your intentions
  • Engage in other artist’s work

Thanks again to Mabz for being the very FIRST pre-recorded interview and for taking the time to share her thoughts with us!

Because of the new recording method and inability to answer “live questions”, Mabz has offered to answer any additional questions The Happy Ever Crafters might have in regards to the topics above! You can find her contact information on her website or send her a message on Instagram, so be sure to reach out!  

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