A bundle of blue headed matches with a single red head match right in the middle

From Bland to Brand: 5 Smart Ways to Create a Stand Out Brand

If you own a business, there’s no one else more passionate about seeing it succeed than you.

That’s why you’re the ideal person to do the work of creating a stand out brand.

But it’s not easy, is it?

What can you do to position your brand so it’s unforgettable?

How can you make your business the first one that comes to mind when your ideal customer is looking for a solution like yours?

The route to a stand out brand is not paved with bland marketing efforts, that’s for sure.

Build a stand out brand that's unforgettable, like this curvy road in the mountains of Switzerland. Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.

Here’s how to craft a stand out brand for your small business.

Follow these five steps, and you’ll be on your way from bland to brand.

Read article …

How to Stand Out from the Crowd with an Unforgettable Personal Brand

How to Stand Out from the Crowd with an Unforgettable Personal Brand

Oprah Winfrey has a stand out brand.

If I say her name, you get an instant image in your mind of Oprah: her physical appearance, her personality, her TV shows, her movie roles, her magazine.

As these thoughts flow through your mind, consider that they have been carefully crafted by Oprah’s marketing team over many years to create a consistent brand image of her in your mind.

After all, what is a brand but a harmonious series of images, thoughts, and beliefs about a person, business or product?

We often talk about creating a strong, consistent brand for your business or product.

What if the “product” you’re selling is you? Can you stand out with a personal brand that’s as strong as Oprah’s?

Read article …

Uncover Your Brand Personality in 10 Minutes or Less

make your brand personality shine throughNOTE: This post includes a free worksheet you can use to do the exercise I describe below. Enjoy, and let me know what you discover! – Pamela

Every brand has a personality, and if you’re in charge of your own brand, it’s crucial to figure out what that personality is, and how to communicate it consistently.

What is a Brand, Really?

You probably expect me to talk about your logo, don’t you? A logo can be part of a brand, but it’s not the whole story — not by a long shot. Your brand is the experience customers have when doing business with your company. It includes:

Read article …

Black background with a light shining down on a golden grail that is standing on top of a stack of books

Do You Honor Your Business?

One of my favorite things about helping small businesses with their marketing is seeing an ugly duckling become a swan.

Businesses with no marketing materials, or ineffective ones — OK, ugly marketing materials — come to me for help. Either I help them directly, or they use my branding products, and over time, I see a transformation take place. The ugly duckling turns into a beautiful swan.

Their marketing materials make them stand up straighter and feel more confident selling. They’re proud to share their web site URL. They can’t wait to press a business card into a prospect’s hand because it’s so beautiful!

Read article …

Design: It’s Not Just Wrapping Paper

I’ve been invited to a birthday party, and I want to get a fabulous gift for the person who we’ll be celebrating. What’s the best way to choose something they’ll like? I can’t start picking out wrapping paper colors or writing the message on the gift tag quite yet.

Think about the recipient

I like to think about what their hobbies are. How do they spend their free time? What’s their daily life like? When I focus on them, it’s easier to find a gift they’ll enjoy.

Once I’ve purchased a gift, it’s time to wrap it. I can’t wrap the gift until I’ve thought about who it’s for, and I’ve purchased it, right?

I have to know who I’m giving it to, and what I’m going to give before I look for a box and pick out the wrapping paper.

That’s the way it is with design, too.

Read article …

A person sifting flour

Shake It Baby, Shake It for Real Good Marketing!

The past few weeks I’ve been rolling out the lessons in a new course, and one of the concepts we’re talking about early on is target markets — or as I like to call them, your ideal customer.

It’s important to define and clearly understand your target audience before you work on your marketing materials. If you don’t know who you’re aiming for, you’re almost guaranteed to miss.

Don’t be afraid to lose

When you market your business, you have to imagine you’re dumping the whole of humanity into a big sieve.

Everything you do – what you write, how you present it, and where you share your messages – gives the sieve a little shake.

Read article …