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Meet Tara Cochran of Olive Fox Design

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tara Cochran.

Tara, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Before falling in love with using strategy-based design, I was an accountant! After a rough, busy season as an auditor, I realized I needed a creative outlet. I started an Etsy shop (now called Olive Fox Paper Shop) with a mission to inspire and support military families. I aspired to help loved ones connect over the miles with personalized ornaments, printable, and holiday cards.

Through this shop, I started to form connections with hard-working military spouse and veteran small business owners. I was privileged to have a first-hand look into the challenges and rewards of entrepreneurship. Soon enough, I was helping bring to life their brand strategy and designing brand identities.

Once I found brand strategy and design, I found it was the perfect fit. I realized it is a space where I am able to use my brain split between creativity and analysis. My extensive background in accounting infuses a bit of nerdery, data-obsession, and color-coded spreadsheets to deliver a unique brand identity and strategy to all of my entrepreneur and small-business clients.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
There were certainly struggles! I was a “third-shift” entrepreneur for almost two years. This meant juggling a full-time W-2 job, family and friends, and Olive Fox Design. I will say the safety net of a full-time job was great to have while I was finding my space in the design world. I also love a smooth process, and my perfectionist tendencies manifest with me wanting to plan every detail out ahead of time- but with entrepreneurship, nothing would ever get done this way! It has been a struggle to lean into the “done is better than perfect” mentality.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Olive Fox Design story. Tell us more about the business.
At Olive Fox Design, I am a brand strategist and designer for ambitious small-business owners. This means I use strategy-based design to help my clients’ ideal audience attract and fall in love with their branding.

My signature service is my brand identity package. Think of this as the classic logo and color palette deliverables… but soaked in design rocket fuel. Or in this case, it’s the rocket fuel that’s immersed in strategy and knowledge-based design. Because every business needs more than just a pretty logo. Once an entrepreneur is all set up with the brand elements they need to lay a good foundation, I am also available to design websites, print, and digital collateral.

I also host consultations to help my clients waste valuable time by helping them ignore shiny objects and guide them towards tools, tips, and methods that will effectively grow their business.

I am most proud of seeing my clients grow and thrive. It is so empowering to see what we’ve created become the foundation for everything else in their business and client touchpoints.

A lot of other designers in my field do not have the extensive business background that I have. This gives me a unique edge because I have years of formal experience (as a former auditor) going in and getting a deep dive understanding of businesses. I have a deep respect for processes and a love for analytics. I’m able to combine all of this with creativity and design knowledge resulting in a wonderful customer experience.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I would say that luck definitely plays a role in my business, and there is a certain element of skill, hard work, and dedication that also factors into my success. One example is our move to Colorado was just before the pandemic hit. Luckily, I was able to connect with some great entrepreneurs in the two months we were here prior to the closures.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Kristin Guynn – https://www.kristinguynn.com/
Samantha Immer https://samanthaimmerphoto.com/

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