Photo credit: Karen Sketch
We're so excited to introduce Francesca Lucido, designer and branding extraordinaire behind up-and-coming creative shop Quip & Kin. If you're curious about launching your own creative business, Francesca has perfectly candid tips on what it takes to succeed as a new entrepreneur. Needless to say, we're inspired!
Q: What is your background in branding and marketing, and when did it "click" that you'd like to start your own business?
A: According to my diploma and the 128-credit hours of completed undergraduate coursework, the degree I hold is within the study of public relations. However, my résumé has positions and projects ranging from journalism, to marketing, to the occasional 140-character tweet.
As to when it first “clicked,” for me it was just prior to graduation from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla. this past December. I was preparing to make the voyage from Tulsa to my hometown of Detroit, when it occurred to me that I had my entire life planned out on a 3x5 notecard. As a Type-A personality of 22 years, this was the expected norm. For the first time, I wanted to write my own adventure in a way that had a lasting and tangible impact. I suddenly realized that I wanted to craft content in a way that effectively showcased clients in clever and insightful ways. Additionally, I desired to create a brand that valued the relationship it held with its clients- or kin, above all else.
Flip forward a few months in your planner and you can officially welcome my first company, Quip & Kin.
Q: Describe to us what a day in the life is like at Quip & Kin!
A: I’d love to answer this question in a candid, direct and honest way for all of you Working Girls out there. With that said, the nature of a communication company is fluid. Each day is unique in and of itself. Each day lends itself to new challenges and accomplishments. That’s what makes it such an adventure! However, I can say that a cup of coffee is the only proper way of starting a day at Quip & Kin.
Q: What is your best advice for working with clients, and how do you keep your workflow organized during a busy week?
A: When working with clients, the best advice I’ve ever received is to listen, first. Reason, second. Speak, third. Additionally, never underestimate a simple handwritten thank-you card. As an individual in the ever-changing world of communication, the competition is steep. Each day, I make it a point to say thank you to someone who has influenced and invested time into my career. As for my workflow organization, my advice is to invest in a great planner. I write nearly everything down – from meetings to scheduled coffee breaks. When you’re wearing multiple hats throughout the day, I’ve found that writing down the little things not only keeps my day reasonably organized but it also lends itself to a feeling of accomplishment each time that I’m able to cross something off my list. (Did I mention that I’m a Type-A? Because, there is a bit more evidence for you).
Q: Who do you look to for branding and design inspiration?
A: For branding and design inspiration, I turn to my graphic designer, Carissa Galloway of C. Leigh Creative. Over a cup of coffee, we met and discussed the foundation of Quip & Kin and how we foresaw the look and feel of the company evolving. Fast-forward a few brainstorming sessions and a few dozen cups of coffee and you’ll see the finished project.
Q: Where do you envision Quip & Kin a year from now?
A: Within the next few weeks, I am very much looking forward to partnering with my dear friend and illustrator, Mary Kinsora. We’ll be launching our first blog covering topics from literature, to relevant workplace and lifestyle issues. We’re excited for this opportunity and hope that all of you Working Girls will be frequent visitors. Overall, I’d love to see growth within Quip & Kin. I can wholeheartedly say that Quip & Kin has been my grandest adventure. I love meeting new clients and finding out what they’re passionate about. Standing beside my clients and helping them craft their message in a way that connects with their audience-or kin is an honor and a journey I look forward to taking again and again.