Previous month:
August 2008
Next month:
October 2008

The Anatomy of a Small Business Brand

IStock_000003091344XSmall[1] Large businesses spend millions of dollars annually to create a brand image. They spread their identity through extensive advertising campaigns designed to interrupt and then attract viewer attention.

Advertising agencies create messages designed to convert viewers into buyers both by getting people talking and creating immediate desire. The Super Bowl is probably the best stage to view large business branding in action.

The problem with this approach for small business is the money to gain brand traction through advertising channels alone is simply not there.

Instead, small businesses have to rely on the power of their direct selling effort to proliferate their brand into the market place.

In small business, clients are the driving force behind the brand message. The philosophy is, what you think is conjecture. What clients think is gospel.

Client answers to the following questions should be the driving force behind every small business brand.

1. What do clients find compelling about your business offering, in their own words?

2. How do they describe the value your business delivers?

3. How does the buyer know you can really deliver? Why should they trust you?

Now that you have a buyer-centric story, it’s time to make it a picture to complete the brand.

In today’s competitive business climate the MEME, meaning a unit of identification, has replaced the outdated logo concept.

Your MEME tells a complete story. It incorporates a picture, with your company name and compelling tag line to help buyers understand what you offer, at a glance.

When you tell a compelling buyer-centric story consistently and have a brand image that portrays your that sales and marketing story at a glance you’ll gain new found confidence. You'll actually want to go out and sell your service or products often.

The reason is you’ll start hearing the magic words of sales and marketing consistently. Those words are “Tell me more about that.”

Where Small Business Has a Huge Impact

Diver When people dive into a small business, they are often looking for one thing; control.


Control of their financial future, control of their career destiny and control of the satisfaction received from their work.


Small business has a huge impact on millions of people’s lives. When set up correctly and done for the long term, a small business can offer personal freedom. You can control your schedule and even work from locations other than a traditional office, if you choose.


If set up for the wrong reasons, it can become the greatest trap imaginable, because you can’t quit.


To build a small business that offers control and satisfaction takes a little creative thinking.


First, figure out what you want to create lifestyle wise with your business. Get clear on the schedule and lifestyle you want to create so you don’t start or expand into the wrong kind of business.


Then focus on creating a value that enhances the lives of other people. Simply "go on a mission."  


With all of your passion, consider what difference you want to make in the world with the business you’re creating.


Next, poll the market. What do they want out of the type of business you’re structuring?


When you understand what the market wants you can simply provide it for them. Use their words and ideas when creating marketing and sales messages.


Finally, target the people you see as a good fit, based on your research, and make them a compelling offer. Provide them with an idea that adds value to their life.


Now you have a small business that makes a difference in your life. You’re happy with it; you are passionate about the mission you’re on. You are making a difference in the lives of other people every day.


If you’re sitting on the fence, jump off and go for it. The world needs your ideas now, more than ever.

The Big Idea or the Ability to Read Your Clients Mind

IStock_000005732397XSmall Historically, in advertising, the big idea has reigned supreme. It’s what propelled the largest ad agencies in the world to prominence back in the golden years of advertising.

The challenge is the big idea is commonly getting blocked out by advertising saturated consumers of the Twenty-First Century.

There are 3,000 advertising message coming at you every day, according to Michael Brower, PhD, and Warren Leon, PhD, in their article called, Practical Advice from the Union of Concerned Scientists.

Buyer's want to do business with people who understand them and their challenges. They want answers that go beyond conceptual big ideas.

As a result, the next phase of advertising, sales and marketing is not the big idea. It is to gain the ability to read your clients mind.

Learning how to read your clients mind is really quite easy.

It requires business owners and their sales team to ask questions and be truly interested in their client’s wants and desires.

Contemporary marketing genius Jay Abraham has called this falling in love with your clients instead of your business.

I think it’s a good analogy. After all, everyone knows what falling in love is all about. When you’re in love, you care more about the other person. You go out of your way to show that caring and do unexpected things that delight your partner.

In today’s marketing and sales message resistant world, the big idea is what your business is all about from your perspective.

But buyer’s don’t care about you and your business. They care about finding solutions to the challenges they face.

The logical conclusion is to gain the ability to read your clients mind and give them the value they are looking for.

When you do, you will generate far more business now and in years to come.