My friend “shopped” my brand.

The dumbest brand strategy exercise ever.

Brit McGinnis
4 min readMay 3, 2019


Source: Pixabay.

When I was obsessed with building my dark-as-fuck personal brand, I was dead focused on figuring out how I came across to people.

It was definitely tied to a deeper insecurity. Was I coming off as cool as I hoped I was?

In other words, was I fooling people?

I’m definitely a horror fan, as my website puts forth. But I didn’t realize at the time that I’m more spooky than dark.

I had no idea (partly because I hadn’t quit caffeine yet) that true crime made me unhappy when I consumed it in vast quantities, or that I used horror largely as catharsis around dark topics.

I didn’t understand my relationship to my own image.

But I could tell there was a gap, and it was making me unhappy. So I gave my awesome writer friend Sonia $90 and asked her to purchase me some shirts based on my online brand.

I was incredibly surprised, but I probably gained more insight than I ever would have with a survey.

More than that, it started setting me on the path toward truthful branding.

Shirt #1: The humorous philosopher.

My eternal fear online is that I will look like a complete wanker.

I know I drink the business-speak Flavoraid sometimes, and I’ll wax poetic about things that don’t really matter a lot. I’m not perfect. But I will never ever put “philosopher” in my Twitter bio unless I’m being paid to teach the subject to people. Loving the Philosophy Bites podcast doesn’t count.

But this shirt includes a life philosophy I can get behind: Spend your days doing strange things with weird people.

It’s not pretentious. It’s not suggesting that the wearer is weird themselves, which I appreciate after thrown “strange and unusual” lines over and over again. (Please stop hitting on vaguely goth women with this.)



Brit McGinnis

Copyeditor. Copywriter. Community Manager. Your horror hostess. Writer of romance novels. Golden Rose Judge. Cited Cruella de Vil expert. Feeder of crows.