|Mikono.com - Branding resource by Mikono.|
Its Time For Some Steak
Recently, I was reviewing our website statistics. One of the sites that had a link to mine caught me by surprise. Since this is a family publication, I won't include the name of the website. But, let's just say it contains a four-letter word that people do not use in most business circles.
The website was basically a bulletin board for people to rant about other companies. The posting about my website started out with the subject, 'Is this website just a little too slick?' The postings went on to say that my website had a lot of sizzle, but no steak.
My first thought was, 'How dare they say something so rude after I worked so hard on my site. Are they trying to say that my business has no substance? They know nothing about me and what I do. I can't believe they would attack MY business image.'
You see, those of you who have met me know that I am a small business image consultant. I work on everything from customer service to documentation and training. Basically, all the behind-the-scenes things that affect the business image. How could MY website have a bad image?
Then I took a step back. And, with a huge gulp of reluctance, I admitted to myself that they were right. Earlier that week, I had started to redefine my business services. Small business image consulting no longer 'fit' the real me. And somehow that was showing through on my website. It WAS a bit too slick. It was not getting to the essence of what I wanted to say.
Instead of just changing my website, I decided to take on a more important endeavor. I took a look at my identity and my brand. I found this amazing book called Make A Name For Yourself by Robin Fisher Roffer. This was the wake-up call that I needed. After pouring over the book, I began to get in touch with my natural gifts.
While documentation has always been a part of my business, it wasn't the part that I 'played up' at networking meetings. Small business image consulting sounded exotic and sexy. It got people talking about customer service and the importance of it. It got me speaking engagements. It got me lots of press. This was all of the sizzle that they mentioned on that bulletin board. But, it didn't get me what I needed most. The steak - more phone calls and emails requesting my services, and ultimately, more satisfaction.
I decided to put my writing services in the forefront. In addition to my technical writing, I now specialize in lengthy documentation and press releases. The process of redefining my business was a scary one. All these feelings of fear and inadequacy appeared. I started to wonder what people would think of the change. Would they think that this was bad for my business image?
Then, I started to wonder how many other business owners are just offering what sounds good. How many of them aren't expressing their natural gifts through their business. How many are afraid to make a change?
None of us should be afraid to redefine our services or to create a brand where there wasn't one before. Now I am more secure in what I do. I am true to myself, my passion, and my gifts. It's a freedom and a liberation that I've never felt before.
My services no longer have an exotic and sexy sound to them. But, at least now I can offer the sizzle AND the steak.
Leila Johnson owns Johnson Solutions Group in Rio Rancho, NM. She acts as Your Virtual Documentation Department. Leila is a versatile writer who works with those small businesses that don't have the time or expertise to handle their documentation. Leila can be reached at 505-896-9379 or through her "new and improved" website at http://www.johnsongroups.com
Three Brand Identity Myths That Will Bring Your Business Down
To begin, let's define "Brand Identity," which is the combination of consistent visual elements that are used in your marketing materials. A basic Brand Identity Kit consists of a logo, business card, letterhead, and envelope. It can be extended to include a website, brochure, folder, flyer, or any other professionally designed pieces.
Build Brand Identity Through Product Branding
Building a product into a brand leader is not easy, but I truly believe that you can improve your branding impression if you follow these 2 rules; Passion & Consistency as well as the 4P's of Branding that I have developed, PRODUCT ? PLACEMENT ? PROMOTION ? PEOPLE. These 4 P's will enable you to check the way your brand is interpreted. Each of these very distinct headings has an impact on your brand, and the brand in turn will affect each of these areas. For those of you who have gone through Marketing 101, you will see that the only difference between the 4P's of Marketing and my 4P's of Branding, are People, and people affect the brand more than any other area.
Brand Boring or Brand Buzz?
I heard an advertisement on the radio the other day that surprised me, not because they were saying anything noteworthy, but because it was so banal. It was a national company's ad. They pay an ad agency to write and produce their commercials. There are so many words at their disposal, so many descriptions, so many emotional statements to attract customers, why would they use the trite phrase, " knowledgeable, friendly staff to serve you"? Even if they couldn't think of anything exciting, they could have used, "if you've got questions, we've got answers", "we specialize in providing answers"?"specializing in premium products and effective solutions"."Try and stump the staff with your questions, they love a challenge". "We don't have all the answers but we'll help find solutions"
Pressure Washing Companies and Co-Branding
Pressure washing companies often miss what we call 'super niche' markets, those industries which very much need pressure washing services and are willing to pay top dollar for them. One such industry is the signage business. For a pressure washing company with no relatives or friends in that industry it is hard to break in and get work there, however if you con-brand with an existing company you may find yourself with more work than you can handle and able to bill at very high rates
Boston Web Design Branding - Brand Identity Guru
A branding company's website purpose is to design websites that will attract attention, give a professional image and support the message you are trying to convey in writing. There are arguments for doing your website design in-house. However website design, search engine optimization and copywriting is a very specialized area and utilizing a website design company can pay big dividends.
Do What Works
"Can you hear me now?"
The Secrets of Starting Business Successfully
Starting Business Secrets will help you to start your own business successfully.
Multi-Brand Franchises in the QSR Sector
Well not everyone is aware that McDonalds also owns several other bands such as Boston Markets; 650 stores in 23 states, Chipotle Mexican Grill; 230 stores in 10 states, Donato's Pizza 200 stores in 10 states, Pret a Manager 140 stores in 4 countries, Fazoli's 400 units in 32 states and two countries. Of this the company derives 2 Billion in annual sales, this is not even counting McDonalds. Many people are unaware of this because McDonald's has not connected the dots. However other franchise companies which franchise and have multiple brands have.
Business Branding - How Character Affects Customers and Your Business Image
The public buys far more than just your products, services and so-called image promotions. Whenever they interact with anyone or anything associated with your business, they are automatically branded emotionally, good or bad, by the totality of your business character.
Your Identity Speaks Loudly...What Are You Saying?
Your corporate identity is a graphic expression of who you are as an organization. It plays a major role in what sells your company and its products. Everything that identifies your business, including your logo, color scheme, and tagline, work together to create an image that your customers remember. Building a corporate identity that bolsters your business objectives is a subtle, yet important part of achieving business success.
John Deere and NASCAR; Excellent Use of Brand
We should all recognize the marketing efforts of John Deere especially as we have spoken before with regards to their TOYS. They have a complete line of nearly every tractor or agricultural attachment they make available in small, micro size.
Brand Equity - Brand Identity Guru
7 Qualities Of A Strong Brand:
Which Of These Words Attract Your Clients
Whether it's your business card, tagline, article title, web site title and description or ad, just the difference of a few words can either pull in prospects and clients or push them away. Getting it right can determine whether your phone is ringing off the hook or you are twiddling your thumbs hoping someone will call.
Product Positioning for Enterprise Software and Information Technology Companies
Good marketing positioning is like good lying. No, we're not suggesting that you lie when creating your company and product positioning. Anything but, in fact. But, it's remarkable how much the properties of good positioning resemble the properties of a good lie.
Speech on Branding from a Franchisor Founder
I was asked today by a group of students; What do you feel is the best way to build brand name and why? And what significance do you feel are relevant to a strong corporate identity?
How Do You Define a Good Logo Design?
Everyone wants his company logo to be the best but how good is good? How do we define a good logo? Is it necessary to be colorful or an exquisite piece of art? Can a simple design work as a good logo? We are often in a dilemma.
Branding Your Radio or TV Campaign With A Musical Identity (aka Audo Logo, aka Jingle)
You don't think twice about a business card and letterhead logo for the visual aspect of your campaign, why not an audio logo to brand your broadcast campaign?
Branding: You are the Brand
What's in a brand name? Everything! Think of these brands: Coke, Barbie, Hershey, McDonalds, Madonna, Pepsi, Bono, Microsoft, Kleenex, Xerox, Steven Spielberg, Dell and GM. Did you notice that brands can be things, replicas of people and actual people? Brands are the public perception of a thing or person. Companies work very hard to establish their brand, sometimes failing when they attempt to tie a secondary product into the popular brand name. Does anyone even remember A1 chicken sauce?
How to Work with Your Graphic Designer
As a graphic designer, I can tell you something right here, right now, right off the bat without blinking?.the graphic design process is a pain in the butt. From the graphic designer point of view, here's what it looks like.
Brand equity can be defined in many different ways. I have developed a simple, yet powerful, definition of brand equity. For a brand to be strong it must accomplish two things over time: retain current customers and attract new ones. To the extent a brand does these things well, it grows stronger versus competition, and delivers more profits to its owners.
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