Branding Strategy: What Is Yours?
Branding Strategy: What is It?
I went to a FREE Social Media Bootcamp last week and was pleasantly surprised by the branding strategy information given by the speaker named John. Not only was it timely information it was practical rules of engagement for all network marketing and business professionals who care to build and grow their business into the new millennium.
A branding strategy is necessary when building a community of followers who will inevitably help you to build your brand.
Think about it:
- Why does anyone care about you or your product?
- Why do they want to share it with others?
- What value do you bring to the marketplace that others don't?
When you think of branding strategy you think of Caca-Cola, iPod, iPad, Apple, Nike, Swoosh, McDonald's, and the like. Big name brands with big name dollars to back up their branding strategies and a whole arsenal of people dedicated to social media and branding strategies.
When you think of YOUR branding strategy you think of....???? Who are you and why do people care? What do you offer and why should people listen? What is your knowledge and why do people share it? Branding strategy on a personal level all of a sudden becomes hard to discern and suddenly you find yourself overwhelmed with all of this branding strategy stuff.
Branding Strategy: Who is your audience?
A branding strategy is necessary for you to create a target audience based on your niche. A target audience who will not only follow you, but will continually come back to you because you've given them valuable information without attaching a valuable price tag or an expectation. Think of Susan Sly and Jeffery Combs; two very marketable brands who have taken their branding strategy to the next level by using their knowledge to achieve notoriety and followers in their niche market: personal development and coaching.
Branding strategists implement 90/10 Rule which is most important when working on developing your brand and achieving followers. What is the 90/10 Rule and why is it so prevalent in your branding strategy when branding yourself as a leader in your business and in your life for that matter.
- So what is your branding strategy and how do you implement it?
- What makes people want to share your stuff?
- What makes people care about your branding strategy and what have you achieved in the marketplace to help them grow and build their business?
Branding Strategy: Why Should They Care?
First, let me give you a piece of advice that was and is continually given to me on a daily basis:
- People don't care about you, they care about them.
- People don't care about your problems, they care about their problems.
- People won't buy from you because you're telling them, they'll buy from you because you're LISTENING to them.
A branding strategy is key to implementation of a solid foundation for your business. I struggled with this daily until I learned a bit more about branding and what I wanted to achieve with my brand: Nicole L Jolie. It's been a journey and I reinvent things so that I keep my brand fresh and unhindered by the noise of negativity. Actually, I reinvent things because I get overwhelmed, nervous and then decide that I need to change it up because I'm not doing it 'right'. Something I've learned not to do and a hard lesson to keep learning. In the beginning we all want to get it 'right' but for some reason we find ourselves falling on our faces more often than we get up and walk. It's really an embarrassing situation to find yourself in as a professional network marketer.
As an aside, an interesting comment came up in a conversation the other day with one of my friends, she owns a talent and modeling agency and was - at one time - a very famous model. Her comment about brands and branding strategy was this, [sic]"Cindy Crawford had it down. She knew she was a brand and she showed up like a brand. She had the business mind from early on and that's why during any bad days she was unflappable because she was a brand and well-executed branding strategies sell."
What is a Branding Strategy? And How do I come up with one?
So I bet you're wondering well, Nicole, why don't you tell us how to come up with a good branding strategy? What's the secret?
1. Stories sell - tell your story. Tell a story. Tell the story of a lifetime. Tell the story of your dreams. Tell a personal vulnerable story. Tell a story of strength and humor. Tell a Story!!
2. Success stories and case studies are tantamount. Everyone loves a good underdog story for inspiration and motivation, but they don't want to hear Debbie Downer whining about how everyone is at fault because she failed. Listen, I've lived my story my whole life and was told by someone who didn't even know me I looked pathetic living this story. It was not easy on the ears, and I had to give him kudos for being so blunt with me. I needed to hear it and moreover I needed to ACT upon it. Success stories are only successful if you've acted to create success.
3. What are your product comparisons? Are you your product? If so, how do you find yourself comparing yourself to others and if you do this, then why? If you're using your product as your selling point you'd better be selling toilet paper. Look, you are your product and no one is going to buy from you unless they like you, trust you and have had a conversation with you. So, if you're looking to this magical product to save you...only open the can and ask the powder inside, "Hey are you going to save me?" I don't know if the powder will answer back, but you'll smell a lot of that product. You are your product!
4. What are your corporate objectives for your branding strategy? And why are they the most important objectives for you to achieve with your branding strategy? Come up with your objectives and really sit down and think about how you're going to run your business for the next 5-19 years...Literally. You are your business and if you're not ready to hear that then you're not ready for this business.
In conclusion, this is not something you're not going to hear in various quantities and definitions over the lifetime of your business. I have heard it since the day I got into this business and didn't understand what to do with it. Now, after a year and many many failing days, weeks, months and oh yeah, this past year, I finally "get it" now I too must implement the same thing I am saying here. Off I go to branding strategy land...la la la la la la
**That picture up top is on google images and really gives the definition of branding strategy to me. I don't know if the baby was tatooed, so don't send me mean messages about the baby's tatoos. I don't have kids.